I am not a great memorizer of music. Directions? yes. Instructions? no problem. Assignments? bring it on! Music? To say I struggle is an understatement. My teacher says I just need to exercise that muscle. Sure, he can play anything from memory because he can just hear what comes next. Oh, I wish I could do that! I was excited when we went back to work on the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto. It’s one of my favorites, at least out of the pieces I’ve learned. The last time I worked on it I memorized it, so I thought, hey this should be easy, right? Wrong! Months later I still struggle with it. I don’t know what the problem is. Maybe I’m thinking about too many other things. Is my bow straight, am I squeezing, the rhythm, fingerings, am I standing up straight, phrasing, tempo, vibrato on all of the notes, dang it my shoulder rest is sliding, is that in tune, did I play the right note? Is your head spinning yet? Mine is. There are so many things to think about when playing a piece, and all of them have to be memorized, not just the notes. If I work on just memorizing the notes then I get reminded about the phrasing. If I just work on the phrasing then I get half way through it and realize it’s badly out of tune. But I’m sooooooo close!! I can smell the finish! I will win Mendelssohn Violin Concerto. Just you wait and see!!

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