For the last eight weeks, I’ve had a weekly practice session with another of my piano teacher’s pupils, Maggie. I wish I had discovered this sooner — practising with someone else makes such a difference!
I feel much less nervous about playing during the lesson now because it’s no longer the only time where I play in front of someone else. Rather it turns the lesson into yet another practice session which takes some of the pressure off. I feel more confident in asking and taking advice and trying out new things. Being able to give someone else advice and tips (and receive them, of course) in turn seems to give me more confidence during lesson because I no longer feel like an impostor. Instead of grimacing and sighing and approaching a minor meltdown when things go wrong, I now shrug, grin and then practice harder.
All of this seems to change the way I see myself: Because playing and practice no longer takes place only at home (and the lesson) I feel less hesitant to say of myself that I do, indeed, play the piano. Not brilliantly, not even close to the pieces I want to be able to play, but I do.
Lastly, sight reading duets is such a good practice to just.keep.going. No matter what. Even though we often end up finishing a bar apart … even when counting!