Friday, August 2, 2013
Am I Listening for the Whispers?
Am I listening for the whispers I heard myself stay after another false start with the new piece. Tonight the recording device was annoying me, or I was annoying me, or my grappling with the unknown had me on edge. When the question arrived - am I listening for the whispers - I still had difficulties playing but now I began to hear why. The judgemental whispers in my mind coupled with the subtle yet unrealistic expectations that something profound would emerge from my repeated efforts with this musical idea were robbing my attention.
Now at least I was listening. I returned to stillness, opening my hearing to the sounds of the AC, the chirps of the evening insects, and then to the sound emanating from my strings. Difficulties presented themselves, but I returned to the listening; and then I let go of the playing.
What was my goal in recording? To learn about this piece that is developing. Then let go, play with all that I am, and keep listening and learning. Once again I see that I have to love the process of practice and all that goes with it. The drudgery, the repetition, and my feelings of not having what it takes this time. I hear the whisper of let go, let go, let goooooooooooooooooooo ...
I press record and play. Ninety seconds in I have arrived somewhere unplanned and pause. Perhaps a new way to begin the piece. I press record again, follow the form and and in a later part of the piece arrive at another new area. Record once more and let it rip. Intensity in one section nearly derails me, but I hang on. An idea from listening yesterday that I thought I wanted to explore did not happen but arrived a few bars later. Time once again to let go. Let go and listen.