This ebook, An Alexander Technique Approach to Harp Technique, is published in a PDF format. It is very detailed and practical, and it will give you the physical tools you need to take the limits off of your ability to create the accurate harp technique you want without sacrificing your body.
This ebook is also for sale on all AMAZON websites in a KINDLE format.
Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, U.S.A. (MOVEMENT THERAPY)
Recently I did an Alexander Technique phone lesson with an extraordinary trumpet player. He was wanting to know what to do over the next month or two, in terms of what to practice and what his goals should be. This is during the Coronavirus, and he isn’t performing at this time.
I INSTANTLY SAID HIS GOAL SHOULD BE COMPLETION OF ALL WE’VE BEEN WORKING ON THIS LAST YEAR IN OUR ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE LESSONS.
What did this mean?
It means it is time for him to internalize a technique and acceptance of that technique, to be able to consistently play with an effortless technique and cause no harm to his body, and to use this technique most of the time.
Musicians, especially, and others like golfers can be stuck in a cycle of improvement. This means they have a goal of how good they want to be, BUT THEY ARE NOT TAKING THE STEPS TO REACH THEIR GOAL, AND GET ON WITH PERFORMING OR COMPETING BY REACHING A CLEAR GOAL.
I get we are works in progress, but there must be a point where the musician or athlete sees what needs to be done. He or she gets it done, and accepts they are now good enough for themselves and the world stage.
It is extremely easy for the practicing musician or training athlete to get caught up in striving for a concrete goal, and not realize that the striving has replaced arriving at the concrete goal.
What is happening is the musician or athlete usually semi-consciously or unconsciously keeps gathering evidence that he or she hasn’t reached his or her goal, because they can’t do certain things easily in their sport or on their instrument.
At this point the dissatisfaction with how good you are at a semi-conscious or unconscious level becomes a permanent way of being. What do I mean?
IT MEANS THE MUSICAL PERFORMER OR ATHLETE IS CAUGHT UP IN AN ENDLESS LOOP OF DISSATISFACTION WITH THEIR IMPROVEMENT, BY GATHERING EVIDENCE THEY’RE NOT GOOD ENOUGH.
AND THEY SHOULD BE DISSATISFIED, BECAUSE THEY’RE NOT TAKING THE STEPS TO SOLVE THEIR TECHNIQUE DEFICIENCIES AND GET ON WITH THEIR CAREERS!
Getting back to the beginning of this essay and my Alexander session with the trumpet player, it became apparent he knew what he needed to master on the trumpet better than me, since he’s the trumpet player. Why hadn’t he?
He had reached a level of awareness in his playing and technique, so that he could create the steps to take to go from being an extraordinary player to an incredible player. Again, why hadn’t he?
BECAUSE UNCONSCIOUSLY HE HADN’T ACCEPTED THAT WHAT HE HAD DONE, BEEN TAUGHT TO DO TO BECOME A FINE TRUMPET PLAYER, DIDN’T WORK ANYMORE. It had worked, but it wasn’t working anymore, because it was based on endless, grueling, straining practice for a goal even his trumpet teacher DIDN’T believe was attainable.
Many performing musicians and training athletes believe having an unattainable goal is what is necessary to be the best at your sport or instrument.
“Trying to attain” are the key words here. By definition you can NEVER reach an unattainable goal.
BUT YOU CAN REACH AN ATTAINABLE GOAL, AND IT WOULD BE AN EXTREME ACT OF SELF KINDNESS TO SET A GOAL OF EXTRAORDINARY GREATNESS AND TAKE THE STEPS TO REACH IT. REACH IT AND GET ON WITH COMPETING OR PERFORMING AND LIVING.