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The Art of Practicing: A Guide to Making…
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The Art of Practicing: A Guide to Making Music from the Heart

by Madeline Bruser

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Subtitled “A Guide to Making Music from the Heart”

A very useful guide to practicing a musical instrument, with tips on everything from physical to mental preparedness. Some of the advice is evident and common sense, some is unexpected. ( )
  samfsmith | Aug 12, 2009 |
Outstanding in philosophy and practical principles. ( )
  librisissimo | Jun 3, 2009 |
In an attempt to address the basic aspects of practicing and interpreting, this book includes both the physical and the spiritual. Instructions are given for stretching exercises to relax and flex the body and for meditation to prepare the mind, often addressing both physical and interpretive problems through a combination of both approaches. The bulk of the instructions are for pianists; here the author feels confident and speaks in her own voice. For other instruments and voice she relies, unquestioningly, on the opinions of others. The format is straightforward instruction combined with the somewhat stilted Socratic question-and-answer approach.

"Madeline Bruser has put together a valuable and insightful look at the art of practicing. If more people read this this book, perhaps we might see an increase in the number of inspired and joyful music makers who, rather than viewing practice as a punitive activity, regard it as the supreme opportunity to explore their own creativity." American Music Teacher

"An essential and brilliant book. Madeline Bruser gives us insight, wisdom, and tremendous practicality." Don Campbell

This landmark book enlightens amateur and professional musicians about a way of practicing that transforms a sometimes frustrating, monotonous, and overly strenuous labor into an exhilarating and rewarding experience. Acclaimed pianist and teacher Madeline Bruser combines physiological and meditative principles to help musicians release physical and mental tension and unleash their innate musical talent. She offers practical techniques for cultivating free and natural movement, a keen enjoyment of sounds and sensations, a clear and relaxed mind, and an open heart and she explains how to prepare the body and mind to practice with ease, understand the effect of posture on flexibility and expressiveness, make efficient use of the hands and arms, employ listening techniques to improve coordination, increase the range of color and dynamics by using less effort, cultivate rhythmic vitality, and perform with confidence, warmth, and freedom. Photographs show essential points of posture and movement for a variety of instruments.
  antimuzak | Mar 26, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0609801775, Paperback)

This landmark book enlightens amateur and professional musicians about a way of practicing that transforms a sometimes frustrating, monotonous, and overly strenuous labor into an exhilarating and rewarding experience. Acclaimed pianist and teacher Madeline Bruser combines physiological and meditative principles to help musicians release physical and mental tension and unleash their innate musical talent. She offers practical techniques for cultivating free and natural movement, a keen enjoyment of sounds and sensations, a clear and relaxed mind, and an open heart and she explains how to

Prepare the body and mind to practice with ease
Understand the effect of posture on flexibility and expressiveness
Make efficient use of the hands and arms
Employ listening techniques to improve coordination
Increase the range of color and dynamics by using less effort
Cultivate rhythmic vitality
Perform with confidence, warmth, and freedom

Photographs show essential points of posture and movement for a variety of instruments.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:18 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

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