Friday, May 20, 2011
To Play Beautifully
After dinner this evening I was tending to online matters and I came across this blog post by Alexis Del Palazzo - Retake: Musical Perception - Developing Artistry within Technique. A good read which reminded me to clarify my intention(s) when I play. The evening was beautiful in my yard, and I decided to play outside. As the sun was setting the birds were doing their evening serenade, and if I had not felt pressed about practicing I could have just enjoyed listening to their songs.
Looking at the tall trees, I mimicked their connectedness with the world. Trees are just trees, can I just be a guitarist? Using the Alexander Technique and my breath to connect with myself, the moment, and the beauty around me I began to play. Quickly I was distracted by the birds, listening to them, but not myself. Why can't a play like a bird sings? Their songs are so beautiful, just a part of their being. Beginning again and again, as I continued getting lost. Reconnecting again via the AT directions, my shoulders feeling wider as I took in the panorama around me. My length reflecting the trees. And then I remembered to connect with my intention. What is my intention as a player I asked? To play beautifully was my first thought, so for tonight and I suspect beyond, this was my intention.
As I began to play, I simply listened to myself within the gesalt of the songs of the birds around me. The trees being trees, the birds being birds, and for 30 or so minutes me just being a guitarist. In a subsequent exchange with Alexis via twitter I was reminded of my post on Why I Play Music. A very good reminder indeed. Healing, beauty, love, joy, peace and wonder - life itself - are available when I am connected with the moment.