A musical repertoire is one of the most important things a musician has. A repertoire is a demonstration of your accomplishments and provides the foundation for you as a musician, so it’s important to have music that you can play at any time which defines you. It’s important that you select pieces to add to your permanent repertoire, think of it like a resume for a job.
You can study an instrument for many years and if you only work on the pieces you’re currently studying you will eventually forget your old pieces you have learned and have a limited amount of music you can play. Let’s be realistic though, if you tried to keep every piece you’ve ever played fresh in your mind it would be an insurmountable task – just imagine trying to practice every piece you’ve ever learned every day; it’s impossible!
So how do you build a good repertoire and maintain it over the course of your lifetime?
Practice the pieces you want to maintain in your repertoire. Play through these pieces on a periodic basis. (It doesn’t require practicing at every session.) Try to keep these pieces fresh in your mind and never too far away from performance level.
Refer back to the original score. This is something that many people might not consider but it’s essential. Over time, no matter how often you revisit your pieces, mistakes and inaccuracies will creep in. By going back and referring to the score you can ensure that you are playing the pieces correctly and as originally intended. You might be surprised when you go back and revisit the score and play slowly with the score that you will see things you never noticed before. This helps you not only to maintain your repertoire but to master it.
Re-study pieces you really enjoy. It’s always personally rewarding to go back over a piece you particularly love and re-learn it by studying the score carefully and getting everything you can out of it. The pieces you re-learn and study again and again will become a part of your permanent memory and form a very strong part of your repertoire.
Thanks so much for joining us here at Living Pianos. If you have any questions or comments about this subject or any other subject please contact us directly: (949) 244-3729 or email: Info@LivingPianos.com