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Campaign Against Fear In Musical Performance



     AIM: to banish fear in musical performance.


     Not enjoying your performance is a serious misuse of the limited time you have on this planet.


     Making mistakes means that you are human, and subject to normal tiredness, mood swings, jet lag, bio-rhythms, inappropriate comments by others, indigestion, cold halls, instrument problems etc. Some of these are partly under your control (given time), but never all of them.


     Mistakes are not a moral issue. It is not a sin to make a mistake unless you do it on purpose to annoy someone.


     No teacher worthy of the name expects you to play without mistakes. If one does, he/she has a problem and should be advised to seek psychiatric help.


     No reasonably intelligent person will think less of you for making a mistake.


     No musician will criticise you for making a mistake. If they do, they are either insensitive, unimaginative, stupid or have a poor memory for their own performances.


     You are not letting anyone down by making a mistake: either friends, teachers or family. If any of them feel you are, they should seek counseling without delay.


     Play at your optimum. That is; do as well as you can in the circumstances in which you find yourself, including your state of mind and health. No one can do more. Giving yourself permission to be less than perfect and going on with an attitude of enjoyment will help you to play at your best.

©Copyright Richard Beauchamp - November, 1998

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