Tag Archives | career

When your flute playing falls apart (if there was one thing I could share with you this would be it)

In her recent lesson with me, Alice, a flautist in her late 40’s, with much frustration in her voice, complained I feel as if I am having to start all over again this week in my playing. It’s driving me insane! You see, recently we had slightly moved her embouchure so that she was able […]

Continue Reading 0

How to fall head-over-heels in love with musicology (+ why it took me a while)

Have you ever considered… Why you play your classical music the way that you do? (And who decides these ‘style rules’ anyway?) Why one type of playing is valued over another in the music conservatory (by the way, who decides what is ‘proper’?) Why there are so many recordings of musicians performing the same pieces […]

Continue Reading 0

How to recharge your flute playing + creativity without spending a dime (I asked, you told)

This morning I was woken by a man driving through the streets yelling through a megaphone that he had brooms for sale. This was then followed by another man with another megaphone selling women’s pyjamas. Then the fruit and veg man arrived with his megaphone, and well, I wish you were here to see how […]

Continue Reading 0

Afraid of your musical burnout? 6 minutes of comforting advice

Recently a letter appeared in my email from a flautist I’ll call ‘Victor’. — Dear Jessica,  I studied flute in the school and this year I will graduate from the Romanian music university from Bucharest. I am not graduating from the university in flute performance, but in pedagogy. Currently I do not feel any passion […]

Continue Reading 1

“My teacher refused to teach me”. A chat with flautist Ruth Ballantyne about rising above the naysayers (+ her new flute book, too)

Surely you’ve heard about the nightmare piano teacher? She’s the one who’d hit your knuckles with a ruler if you played a wrong note at the keyboard. Shudder. While it can’t be said that ruthless teaching practices are limited to purely musical subjects, I’ve heard far too many of my flute students relate their own horror […]

Continue Reading 1

My up-close-and-personal conversation with flautist and interdisciplinary performer Zara Lawler

I’ll admit that I was skeptical (and intrigued) when I first read that New York city-based flautist, Zara Lawler combines dance, voice and text while she plays. But,  listen– that skepticism didn’t last long because after I watched her brilliant theatrics in action I was hooked. The fact that she quotes poetry by Rumi in the middle of her Andersen etudes (as one […]

Continue Reading 2

The Top Digital Tools That Have Helped Me Build a Global Flute Career

Podcast: How Digital Tools Have Built The Career of A Flute E-Diva Are you interested in offering online teaching as a musician? Listen to some tips in my latest interview with Phil Byrne of Positively Sparking, a weekly web-marketing and digital-life podcast. In this episode we chat about the digital tools that have helped me build […]

Continue Reading 0

What I Tell Myself When I Don’t Feel Like Practicing

There’s tons of advice written for how to ‘make the most’ of your practice sessions, but how about getting motivated to pull out your instrument in the first place? Here I share 25+ years of what has worked for me a flautist (and what hasn’t) — Back in the 1990’s when I was an teenager […]

Continue Reading 2

The Letter I’d Write to my Teenage-Self About Being a Musician, 20 Years Later

Hello, my whimsical, hopeful, fresh-faced girl. Since I have your attention for a moment, let me whisper in your ear 10 truths that will be your own only after you leave all those music degree programmes. Keep them near. 1) Your flute teacher –at every stage– matters. Really matters. This person will be like a […]

Continue Reading 4

Why There’s No Shame in Being a ‘Prostiflute’

Hold on, now. By ‘prostiflute’ I am not talking about mixing prostitution from the red-light area of your favourite city with being a flute player (now that would be a highly fascinating blog topic, no doubt). To be a ‘prostiflute’ (which by the way is not my term,* but is oh so fitting, no?) is to use your […]

Continue Reading 0