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Saturday, December 14, 2013

#Sightreading and #Seduction. By John von Daler

               Most of my readers will know what seduction is. But sightreading? You take a piece you never have seen and play it as perfectly as possible in one sitting. Most musicians do this at recording sessions. A sexual angle however does not often come up. That's my idea. Let me make a comparison: sightreading is the musical equivalent of seduction as we know it from #Casanova and Co. Approach the score, size it up, play it and move on.

                Now what use is this comparison to you? I do not have to explain seduction to you. You have read Shamela, Fanny Hill and Fear of Flying, and probably even the Story of O. But do you really know anything about sightreading? Could this enticing juxtapositiion help you to get a feel for music played in that way?
                The basics are: You stand there with an instrument and a piece of paper with black dots on it and you make music out of the combination - hopefully fine, beautiful, powerful or sweet music. To do that you have to train your ability to understand the whole piece at once. You need to walk around the music the way you would walk around a statue or a real person. You need to have a feeling for what the whole work is like inside and out. Then when you start your rendition of the notes, it might possibly turn out beautifully.
                As far as I know, the great seducers have always had an intuitive feeling in the same way for the physical and psychological forms of their lovers.
                Now the tough thing about being the musician is that when you have recorded the most beautiful version, you go home. But isn't that exactly what the great seducers always have done?
                In defense of both sides of the comparison: feelings are also involved in a nice way. Both seducers and sightreaders often have genuinely warm feelings. I can speak for the sightreaders because I have been very good at just that. You will have to do your own research on the seducers.
                One thing I know for sure: a little bit of music could never harm any seduction. And a little eroticism never hurt a musical session. 

My book, Pieces: A Life in Eight Movements and a Prelude (WiDo Publishing) is now available. Order through, the publisher or your local bookstore. Click to buy "Pieces". Please feel free to write a short review of the book in your own language at or GoodReads. Thanks for your support!


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