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Archive | Inspiration

“Jessica, fix my high notes!”[10 minute video inside]

Struggling with your upper register? Does just the thought of playing high notes make you feel tense? Secretly want to avoid them altogether? If so, this 10 minute video is for you. In this chat, I talk about a more holistic* approach to playing that moves away from solely ‘fixing’ the technical side of things. Why? Because your musicality is waaaay more […]

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The easiest, simplest, happiest way to be a musician is this…

In her lesson recently, Jane said with an apologetic voice, “I’m so sorry, Jessica. I didn’t really get to practice much. My work has been manic lately. I think I only got 4 sessions in since I last saw you. Lately I am choosing to spend my free time in the evenings with my teenage kids, it’s really […]

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15 unexpected things that happened when I said “buh-bye” to my flute career

A letter landed in my inbox last week… Hi Dr. Quiñones, I am currently a graduate student in flute performance. I have always had a drive & joy about choosing this career path. It’s always felt relatively easy to connect with why I want to be a musician or an educator. Lately, though, I’ve felt […]

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Rough times happening? Oh look, there you are making gold out of it. Here’s 3 heartfelt observations about your playing to get you through the storm

As I’ve eased back into my teaching again after my maternity leave, you’ve caught me at a really nostalgic place. Now in my 20th year of giving flute lessons, I’ve been reminiscing about the hundreds and hundreds of students I’ve taught over these past two decades–it must be thousands of flute lessons that I’ve given […]

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Don’t think it’s only a cliché. THIS is what’s possible. THIS is what could happen

Lately, I‘ve been pondering the thought what’s in store for my new baby boy over the next century and all the ‘what ifs’ that come with it. I know I’ve written about it in past blog posts before, but world events happen that bring me tears of deep frustration because I just don’t know what […]

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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 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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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 […]

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Everything I know about receiving support (artistic, or otherwise)

  On the 2nd of January, 2017 I decided that my New Year was due a restart. I was in bed with Salmonella food poisoning –there was no way I was going to start the year like that. I’ve aligned my celebrations with the Chinese calendar instead. Happy New Year of the Rooster to you–and […]

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