"Somehow the cello is both the best and the worst thing that has happened to me..."
"At first I was not very much into cello playing but through the years my feeling changed, and my life too!"
No matter how it started....
You and your cello are on a relationship!
9 TIPS FOR A HAPPY AND LONG LASTING CELLO-RELATIONSHIP!
1. QUALITY TIME
Organise your practice schedule by topics, but always keep time for romance ;)
Date night ;)
Romantic repertoire helps you connect with your feelings. Choose and easy piece you particularly like, listen to the tone of the instrument, sing together.
- My cello is not good
- I don't like my strings
- My bow is too weak
- I sound bad
- I am always too tense
- I can't do spiccato
Tip about the bow: your bow needs good tension. Tense your bowwhen you need quick answers from the strings/your cello.
Develop analytical skills
Pay attention to the vibration of your strings.
How does your cello respond: too slow? Too difficult to play? Discuss your issues with a luthier, or two...
- Before making changes on your cello, try to change the way you sound your string, with less or more pressure on the string, speed, weight.
Keep your body posture optimal, record yourself with video. Be your own teacher.
4. FUN TIMES - HOLIDAYS
Non-guilty days or holidays without playing cello are also important!
Take a day off* regularly, do something else, enjoy other activities without your cello.
*A day off is not a day where you think you should practice but you don't, a day off is a day where you plan not to practice and don't think about it all day, guilt free ;)
If you cannot take breaks, you might have Obsessive Cello Disorder ;) be careful with burnout...
5. KEEP AN OPEN MIND - EXPERIENCE
People change and relationships change all the time, be curious, learn from other experiences.
- Listen to different interpretations, welcome them and try to understand the point of view of the performer without judging.
- Try different set-ups, instruments, accoustics etc. ! PLaying a different instrument forces you to listen to the sound of the cello with new ears, finding how to interact with the cello, how to adjust etc. Here are a few exemples of experiences to make...
- Electric cello
- 5 strings cello
- New cello
6. HEALTHY CONFLICTS
Accept those little conflicts as challenges to become a better person and cellist!
When you do not expect people to be perfect or who you want them to be; you can love them for who they are...
-> it is the same with your cello, and with yourself ;)
Keywords to help you deal with frustration
How to trust, who to trust...
- The better you know yourself the better you can take the decisions which are best for you, and the better you can trust yourself.
- The better you know your cello, the better you will know it's limit and potential, know what you can expect, what you can ask.
- Trusting others is also important in order to get other opinions and advice. Having teacher, colleagues, luthiers you can trust will help you find solutions when you can't solve a problem by yourself.
9. ACCEPTATION & COMMITMENT
Cello goals and commitmentWhen you decide to commit to your cello on a professional level, this relationship takes another dimension. The cello becomes your work partner, you take competitions, auditions, play concerts, practice for hours and hours.Always together, next to each other on the plane, restaurants, metro, carrying it on your back. "Cello" might even have a name.
Need counseling? I'll be happy to help! Let's make a plan