Tuesday, 19 March 2013

ABRSM Grade 5 - further reflections

When one thinks about a recent performance, be it on a stage or in an exam it is easy to fall into the trap of analysing it to death. But having slept on last Friday's ABRSM Grade 5 exam I have come to a few conclusions that will hopefully point the way to greater success in the future.

On reflection, any chance of a merit was scuppered by nerves. No surprises there I hear you cry and yet I sang Pleasant and Delightful really well when the nerves magically disappeared for a few minutes. Why?

My simple conclusion is this: PREPARATION. Last year I wasn't as nervous for my Grade 4 even with 'Mr Grumpy' examining. When I think about it I just knew the pieces better. This year, I only really had Like to a Linden Tree to learn from scratch, so it should've been a piece of cake.

In truth, I didn't work hard enough. It's as simple as that. In my defence, there was a multitude of reasons why that was the case and I won't bore you with the details, but in essence, the amount of work I put into that one new song was too little too late and it showed.

When I consider my performance of Bring Him Home last November, the reason that went so well was because I knew that song inside out and no amount of nerves were going to make me forget any part of it. It is only when I get to that stage that I can relax enough to sing with a bit of freedom and expression or 'with gay abandon' as Caroline likes to put it. Clearly, that is where I need to get to with everything I attempt to perform.

I daresay some of you reading this are thinking "well duh, obviously!" Well yes, I suppose it is obvious, but sometimes it needs spelling out and the exam did just that.

So apologies to Caroline, but things will be better in future. Work needs doing on music theory which should also help matters plus an all round better approach to learning songs. I have the books, I just need to get my finger out!

Despite all this navel gazing, I'm really looking forward to getting my result and feedback form which should make very interesting reading. I will bring you all the gory details as soon as it arrives.

Before all that, we've got a trip to Brum on Friday for a concert by a certain ALFIE BOE!!! Now this is a guy who can sing! Frankly, I am beside myself with excitement! 'Eeeeeeeeeeee', as Livvy would put it! A full concert review will follow on 'A Nightingale Sang' on Saturday.

All together now, 'GOD ON HIGH, HEAR MY PRAYER. . . '

Cheers for now,

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