YOUR WALLS ARE BARE
Two friends of mine, a married couple, came to visit me in Chicago when I first finished grad school. I lived alone at the time, and they were staying at my place. When they walked in, the wife immediately commented on how bare my apartment walls were, even though I had all these pictures and frames sitting in the corner of the living room.
I started to explain how I hadn’t decided where they were going to go, and how I wanted to update some of them with new pictures. …
Performing is something I’ve always enjoyed, and I learned a lot during my first summer tour of drum corps in 2001. Something changed, and it wasn’t “just for fun” anymore — this was serious.
Have you ever wanted to do something right so badly that it actually got worse?
For me, I made the mistake of not switching from “practice mode” to “performance mode.” In practice, I was constantly listening and thinking, critiquing myself and narrating what I would do differently the next repetition. However, you shouldn’t be talking to yourself in performance mode — you’re performing, remember?
I finally learned how to shut that inner monologue off in my head, and my approach to walking on stage completely changed. It was a process, but I figured out a lot over four summers, two of which were DCI World Championship titles. These lessons were a large part of my foundation as I continued life as a professional musician, and the lessons that I now share with my students today. …