Sahara Naini's blog

One of the Most Important Pieces of Advice I've Ever Received

One of the most important pieces of advice I’ve ever received from a teacher over the years was to think about how I move my body as I play. While technical aspects of playing are super important, the simple act of moving your body with the music will add expression and flow to the music. Additionally, it will help you convey the feeling of the music to your audience as you perform. 

In the TikTok below, I play an excerpt on my viola, first with no movement, and then with added movement so that you can see and hear the effect that this has on the overall performance.

Improvise with Michael on the black keys!

You can learn how to compose your own music or improvise by limiting the amount of notes you're allowed to play. Once you are happy with how the notes sound,  you can add in new notes and make up your own melody. In the following TikTok, Michael plays a groove that you can play along to to practice making your own melodies using only the black keys.

If you follow us on TikTok, we invite you to create a duet with Michael!

When Things Get Difficult: How to Deal with "Sounding Bad"

Have you ever been frustrated because something you're practicing is really difficult? Well that's totally normal. We've all been there!

Here's what you can do when this happens:

Remind yourself that if something is difficult, it just means that you're learning something new. If a piece is easy for you, it means you may not be learning as much as you could be if you were practicing something more challenging.

Three things that my students do to improve the most each week

Wondering how you can make the most of your practice each week? Here are three things that my students do to improve the most each week:

  1. Scales: Practicing scales each week not only improves your motor skills, but also your agility and knowledge of playing in different keys.
  2. Sight reading: With frequent sight reading practice you will be able to learn new pieces faster, understand general patterns of melody and harmony in music, and it will also increase your confidence in your playing!