K - Keyboard (Playing the Keyboard)

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Teaching myself to play the keyboard was a quite offhand and random decision. I don't think I ever really officially decided to learn, it just kind of happened. In years 7-9 all students ended up playing the keyboard at one time or another as it was quite easy to pick up and play simple tunes on. In Year 9 I started to really enjoy playing the keyboard, we got to find some of our own music it and play duets and so getting some independence made me want to play the instrument more regularly. Eventually I decided I wanted to do music GCSE which meant having an instrument I officially played, so I could be assessed doing solos or duets. This meant I needed to practice more regularly and take playing the instrument more seriously; and I was lucky enough that my parents bought me a keyboard for my birthday that year, so having rehearsal time and space was a lot easier for me.

 I became really enthusiastic about playing, my teacher taught me the basics of learning to read sheet music and so I was constantly finding new piano sheet music online so I could rehearse and play different pop songs or theme tunes rather than classical songs. It was quite easy to teach myself the basics of the piano. Once you know where the chords are on the keyboard and you find a way of remembering where an A is it becomes a lot easier from then onwards, as that's the most difficult part. After that it's just learning the different patterns of chords for the songs - and the more you rehearse each individual song the easier it becomes. My Dad use to play the piano when he was younger too, so having him give me some tips when I began learning really did help.

The only thing I struggled to grasp was confidence in playing to other people. I remember the first time my teacher wanted us to perform to our class, I was terrified, I was shaking so much and I couldn't physically remember the sheet music, I think I must've attempted playing four or five times and although I was getting encouragement from my teacher, she eventually realised I wouldn't be able to perform that day. However, when we had our first GCSE music evening a few months later, I performed to a full audience of parents, teachers and friends and although I was still crazily nervous before hand but I was so proud of how much more confident I'd become in such a short space of time. But I think without doing drama along side music I wouldn't have gained any confidence at all, performing as someone else and playing a character, helped me gain more confidence in just being on stage as myself.

Do you guys play any instruments? Or had a battle with confidence?

"Music softens the pain, increases the joy and opens the heart"

Until Tomorrow,

Alice x

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