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Tag Archives | your hopes

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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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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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 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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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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