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Practicing for consistency

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  • Practicing for consistency

    Let's take a (hypothetical) good piper. Somewhere around the point of breaking into professional competition. Good, idiomatic, fluent player.

    The problem this player has isn't technique, or timing. It's what I would call consistency at scale. Ask them to play fifty birls or doublings or taorluaths in a row, and they'll do it well. But when they play a 2/4 march, they miss one birl in the third part. The second phrase of the repeat of the second part is just a little rushed compared with the first time round. When they play their strathspey, there's a single run where the preceding note is a little too open, but not anywhere else the same notes are repeated. Four or five little problems, some that only an experienced judge might pick up.

    Then the next time round the same tunes, four or five similar issues, but in different places.

    So in short, none of these issues are things that need "fixed", as such. But what would your advice be to such a player? How would you help them achieve this "consistency at scale"?
    -- Formerly known as CalumII

  • #2
    It sounds like little lapses in focus.
    My Piping Blog (recordings, articles, reviews, etc.) - Homepage - Pekaar's Tune Encyclopedia - Convert BMW to ABC


    • #3
      It should like the tempo might be a bit high for how comfortable the piper is with the tune. Or, as Patrick says, lapse in focus. Maybe sing the tune in his/her head while playing? Dunno, each piper is different.

      Andrew T. Lenz, Jr. • BDF Moderator - Reference for Bagpipers