Tag Archives | inspiration

Want to grow your teaching studio? 10 ways to attract your dream music students into your life

Recently an email arrived in my inbox from a British flute teacher:  Hi Jessica, after many years in the profession I have decided to focus on setting up my own studio. I have recently shared some pop covers which have been well received on social media. I would be very grateful to hear any tips […]

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Totally bored of playing long tones? Not working out for you? Here’s 15 things to consider tweaking first

“What am I doing wrong here?” said Geoff, a 70-year-old learner of the flute. Clutching a well-worn copy of Trevor Wye’s famous ‘Tone Practice Book’, he grumbled with frustration: “It seems like no matter how many long tones I do, I really don’t hear much improvement in my sound!” It was our first lesson together […]

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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 […]

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Your (musical) guide to seeking pleasure (and why to stop feeling guilty about it, too)

Quick Question: What are your top 10 personal ‘cure-alls’? Below are my little ‘go to’ for pockets of pleasure: 1. The aroma of yellow buttery dahl from a Bombay café 2. Wearing turquoise anything 3. A cumbia bass-line that beckons a groove 4. Roger Federer in all-white 5. A quirky foxglove 6. Speeding around the Cornish coast […]

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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 […]

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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 […]

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What I Do as a Flautist When World Events Seem Overwhelming

It’s a tumultuous world energy right now. News events are happening that have brought me tears and a deep frustration because I just don’t know what to do about it.  I can feel small in that sense. I have learned that I have to check-in with myself in order to keep it all in perspective. I do this […]

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“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 […]

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