Music has a way of impacting us to our very core – no matter if you’re listening to it, playing an instrument or singing. Cultivating that passion will help you go far in your music lessons. Read on as Mesa, AZ teacher Karen R. explains…
My musical passion was ignited as a little child because I was raised in a musical family where I was surrounded by music. My parents, sisters, and I were singers and instrumentalists. Through private music lessons, musical ensemble, and group experiences, I learned to sing and play instruments well. I latched on to music as a child because it gave me joy, hope, inspiration, self-esteem, delight, and enjoyment, especially during difficult circumstances. It became my flotation device in hard times. Through music, I could escape into a world of beauty and joy. I have seen “The Sound of Music” innumerable times, because it captures the truth of how music powerfully transforms lives by creating joy, encouragement, and healing. Therefore, it is important that we, as musicians and music teachers, not only find our passion for music, but develop and sustain it.
The first step for musicians is finding their musical passion. For beginning music students, they can start by researching different instruments and talking with music teachers to find out what instrument/instruments would suit them. They can reflect on what instrument they feel passionate or excited about. Budding musicians can also discover their musical passion by journaling about how listening to and playing music makes them feel. This will get them in touch with the powerful, healing and inspirational impact of music on their souls.
Second, we need to envision and reflect on how we want to develop as musicians and what and who we want to become. All musicians including beginning, intermediate, and advanced, and even music teachers need to set short and long term goals and assess daily, weekly and monthly if they are where we want to be as musicians. Also, imagining and seeing ourselves as that musician is powerful. My short-term goals was to get back into musical theater and recently I landed the role of Mrs. Paroo in “Music Man!” My long-term goal is that I want to get a doctorate and do my thesis on the powerful impact of music on people. I envision myself as a musical theater actress and having a doctorate in music! Furthermore, all levels of musicians who want to grow and develop should practice with their instruments regularly, take private lessons, read musical literature, go to concerts and musical theater so they can listen to and observe other musicians and artists.
Finally, we need to work on sustaining our musical passions on a daily and ongoing basis so we won’t become bored, disheartened, and discouraged. When I was a music major, there was a time that I felt discouraged and defeated because I felt so criticized. I then wrote self-affirmations on notecards about who I am as a musician, my strengths, and that this is God’s gift to me. I carried these notecards with me and looked at them frequently. Also, what is equally helpful is to write a mission statement about why we are musicians and music teachers. What is our purpose? My purpose is to perform music to lift, encourage, and give joy to people. My purpose as a teacher is to help maximize my students’ musical potentiality so they can create joy.
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Karen R. teaches guitar, piano, singing, Broadway singing, music theory, Opera voice and songwriting lessons in Mesa, AZ. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Grand Canyon University, and joined the TakeLessons team in December 2012. Learn more about Karen, or search for a teacher near you!