Henry van Dyke guitar practice

Henry van Dyke on Performance, Perfectionism, and the Art of Sharing

 

How good do we need to be before sharing our music with someone?

Do we need to get to a particular level or speed before letting someone hear us play?

One of the mistakes we often make is thinking that playing music is about us. It’s not. When we play music for someone, the act itself is the point.

Kids are comfortable with this. They can draw a picture and present it as a gift without any notion of “not-enoughness”. They don’t feel the need for their art to be museum-quality. It comes out, and they pass it along. Clean and easy.

But as adults we think we’re already supposed to sound perfect. We compare our daily practice to a professional’s edited studio recording and find ourselves wanting.

This is akin to not leaving the house because we don’t look like the airbrushed models in the magazine ad.

Sharing music can be scary, sure. We put ourselves in a vulnerable position. We remove our armor and expose our soft underbellies.

But if we select our audience carefully, and show up with enthusiasm and generosity, it usually goes well.

Not only do we build confidence and enjoy a personal victory over our ego, but we also inspire others to do the same. And that’s a gift as well!

Music is communication, and it truly is the thought that counts.


      Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.

                               Henry van Dyke


 



allen mathews classical guitar

About Allen Mathews

Allen Mathews learned guitar as an adult, and has been a full-time guitar teacher for almost two decades to students age 4 to 96.  He has taught classical guitar at Reed College and Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, and has been a guest lecturer and clinician at schools and universities throughout the U.S.  Allen is often praised for his creative teaching abilities, and his dedication to helping adults learn classical guitar.  He has a popular Youtube Channel offering regular classical guitar tutorials, and has gained fans worldwide for his weekly emails and articles at ClassicalGuitarShed.com.


I practised your system for three days, and it solved the I-M alternation problem I had been struggling with since I undertook classical guitar three years ago.  Many thanks!


-Johnny Geudel

Hi Allen, I am a Dutch guy who plays classical guitar (solo and together with a flute player). Unfortunately I have been suffering from focal dystonia since begin 2016. Of course I tried physical therapy which didn't help… But I tried some of your [technique] lessons (I had teachers before but I was never taught your techniques) and to my big surprise the nasty feeling in the back of my right hand which pulls my index finger upward was gone! So now I practice your lessons. Anyway, I am very happy to have found you on the internet. Thanks very much!


-Arnoud Reinders


Become a Member and Play More, Beautifully!

“The basics are the basics, and you can’t beat the basics.”
Charles Poliquin  

Join the program that takes you from the beginning fundamentals to advanced mastery, so you…

  • Move your hands safely and fluidly

  • Enjoy fulfilling practices and meaningful work

  • Play beautifully with expression and flow

Click the button to take a step towards an organized, effective guitar practice. >>>



Featured Courses

$39
jesu bach classical guitar

Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring – Bach

One of the best loved of all classical guitar arrangements.

See more...

$39
read music guitar high positions notes

Play and Read Music in the Higher Positions

Learn to read music and identify notes on the entire neck.

See more...

$39
how to play segovia scales

Better Technique, with “Segovia’s Favorite Scales”

Detailed explorations of this popular technical tool.

See more...

« » page 1 / 2

See more…