Rasputin wrote: ↑
Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:12 pm
Adrian Allan wrote: ↑
Tue Nov 14, 2017 8:56 am
Has anybody tried hypnotism, or does anybody think that hypnotism would work?
I can understand that they might tolerate all of that - but why anyone would want to manufacture a desire to perform, just to put themselves in that position, is beyond me.
Situations may vary. Here is my take on this.
I teach guitar and other classes at the college level here in North Carolina. I also have a private studio. From my experience, people-who don't necessarily want to pursue a career as a performer- find themselves in a performance situation pretty much by default. The system pushes music students regardless of their emphasis to perform on a semestral basis in order to get a grade. Students who don't major in music performance but music education, general studies, or even a minor in music instead, still need to have a principal instrument and perform a recital in order to graduate. For most of them it is a nerve-racking experience, but one that is important to have no matter what your emphasis is in your musical career. It is very formative for the future. Just people who end up as musicologists, theory teachers, or administrators can get away without performing at all later in life. Everyone else will need to deal with that in one way or another.
As for students who belong to.my private studio outside of college, I always encourage them to play at the end of the semester's studio recital, but it is not mandatory whatsoever. I try my best to make the occasion feel like a celebration, and to choose an adequate repertoire that will allow them to have the best experience on stage. The month before the recital we do recorded runthroughs and we invite family members to attend the lessons. This exercise helps them to overcome the feeling of self awareness that kicks in once you play in front of others. By the time the date of the performance comes "almost" everyone feels ready and do a great job. They end up having a great time and their families and friends in attendance feel great as well. I, as their teacher, am taking a risk as well, but a controlled one. I don't want my students to look nervous or embarrassed. That will make me.look bad and is not good for business:)
Having said that, definitely classical guitar is not for everyone. I am the first one to recommend to try commercial music or songwriter guitar style to those who don't find joy in classical guitar. But soon they will find out that even when they have to play chords to the lyrics of their favorite tune, if it is in front of an audience, they still will have to deal with nerves.
Here is an anecdote. I live in an area that has a vast military population. I have in my studio military people who have been deployed many times. I had a student once who was a Jump Master. Great guy. He used to show up for lessons late in the afternoon, and during the day he probably had jumped from am airplane 3 to 4 times training soldiers. And yet, performing Classical guitar in front of an audience was something that he found overwhelming. That shows us that is not the nature of the task itself but instead the sense of not feeling 100% in control of the task, what triggers an anxiety reaction. It is all about tricking our minds into believing that there is no uncertainty.