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Bryon Tosoff
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Bryon Tosoff

7/15/2019 3:00:16 PM ---- Updated 7/15/2019 5:32:12 PM

Playing Sheet Music upside down
Yup actually happened

I had a student who was having trouble with one of her songs, and asked me to play it for her

So away I went, dang if that song sounded like crap,here I was going along and thinking what a pile of junk song, this thing sucks, going backwards I guess, then it dawned on me. it was upside down,well then I turned it around ,and well that was better lol

what happened when I copied the music the treble and bass clef got missed when I placed it in the copier, so there you have it, Piano Teacher giving music to a student who just could not figure it out, strange ,kinda a Victor Borge situation all by accident

well there is my crazy topic which I have never shared here before.


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Shoe City Sound

7/15/2019 5:44:52 PM


Hahahahahaha YES! wish you had recorded it - what piece was it?


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Bryon Tosoff

7/15/2019 6:11:39 PM


Somewhere in Time, John Barry
I still remember my students name. Karla never seemed to be able to hold it together at recitals , although a fabulous player, exceptional, recitals she fall apart, always painful to watch her struggle, when I knew she was a good pianist and she had flair and a nice touch


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Shoe City Sound

7/15/2019 11:30:23 PM


Oh that used to drive me crazy when I was teaching. I always felt so guilty that I didn't know any way to teach someone how to not lose it during performances.

That is one of my favorite movies btw. I love the concept of time travel.


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Bryon Tosoff

7/16/2019 12:40:35 AM


I would give small mini classes with 5-8 children throughout the year. 4 times with different people. Part of performing well is being self assured, well rehearsed and knowing your project. I think part of the issue was the confidence aspect.

Doing presentations of ones songs was another method I used and still do, that is maintaining ones repertoire and I would do surprise , this is the day thing, unexpected challenges, kinda a impromptu thing at least 2- 3 times yearly where a student would present their songs, I always impressed upon all my students the need to maintain their works, and build their performance repertoire.

I think in all the years I taught I only had 2 students out of nearly a 1000 I taught over the years that were unable to hold it all together. I would work with others to develop their skill set and do what I could to assist students to become decent performers , it of course is not meant for everyone being in a concert setting even though they could play well and we would rehearse, in smaller audiences the challenge was the persons ability to have the self assured approach and self confidence, and playing though despite the nerves and miscues. It is a learning experience. a process, no easy task.

Overall I always would praise them and the efforts they did in their performance.

I think part of it is having the opportunity from young and experiencing the whole process. The few who had issues came to me as teens an did not have the teachers who gave recitals and I think that contributed to some of the reasons they were unable to fully capture the enjoyment and satisfaction of accomplishing a successful concert presentation. Not everyone can be a performer though, I feel it is to give it your best shot and do the best you can.


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Shoe City Sound

7/18/2019 2:55:25 PM


Such a good reply and I totally would employ all those methods - except I didn't teach at a studio, rather at the student's homes and getting them together for very many rehearsals was always really hard to schedule. I would have like to workshop way more than I got to. But the funny thing Bryon, is that from reading what you say about some students just not being natural born performers, I recognize myself in that! I really don't require an audience reaction to what I do - in fact I'm kind of too shy to have the full experience of audience/artist interaction which is the whole point of performance haha. I have performed all my life, but only because I never considered not doing it till the luxury of the home recording studio became a reality. So maybe my heart wasn't really in it when I tried to help the students perform their best. Most of them, as you say, didn't need any encouragement from me. They were total hams and played great at every recital.

Also - what?! on that fall from a building - boy that speaks to the idea that if it's not your time to go, it's NOT. Life is crazy


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Chandra Moon

7/19/2019 5:22:34 AM


A left-handed very wonderful musician friend of mine plays his guitar upside down rather than a left handed guitar - as a result the tunes, chords and songs he plays have a really unique sound and quite wonderful - this post just reminded my of my upside down left handed guitar playing friend!


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