Hey, teacher friend!

Recital SURPRISES and More...

Published about 1 year ago • 5 min read

The theme of this week's podcast episode was: Give Students the Chance to Surprise You.


My studio recital was this past Sunday, and WOW - did my students surprise me!

One of my favorite parts of Recital Day is seeing how students react to playing for a live audience. Some students pull inward and play timidly, but others just know how to harness the energy of that moment and absolutely COME ALIVE.

I have one student, in particular, who delivered a most-memorable performance of Chopin's famous Prelude in E Minor (opus 28 number 4).

Truthfully, I never wanted him to play the piece. He's a recent transfer student, and I was not convinced he understood the musical demands of the work (I hold a high standard for that phrasing, you guys...).

But - long story short - he ended up performing the piece for a few different events this spring, including Sunday's recital.

Oh. My. Word.

The performance he gave was SUCH a departure from his usual playing, I actually laughed out loud in surprise multiple times.

In our lessons, his playing tends to be rather flat.

To my absolute surprise, the emotional journey through musical colors he took us on that afternoon was anything but flat.

What is more fun than seeing a student seize the performance moment?

I had several similar surprises from other students on Sunday as well. In fact, a handful of performances I was most anxious about beforehand ended up being some of the most engaging of the day.

I'll say it again: Give your students the chance to surprise you.

(and then, let them SEE your delight)


One last recital story: As my 6-year old daughter played her piece, her headband began to slowly slip down her forehead, until it looked like this:

Fortunately, she continued playing confidently and ended her performance with THE SWEETEST little giggle. It was a favorite moment of many on Sunday.

If you are up to your eyeballs in recital preparations, here's a reminder that it IS, indeed, worth it all, friends. Cheers to YOU and your own unique brand of recital magic!

Featured Help for Studio Teachers:

Cheers to YOU, my music teacher friend! Be sure to hit reply and tell me where YOU are in the recital-season journey!

Onward and Upward toward more (pleasant!) student surprises. Here, here!


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