Wow!! I’ve gotten a LOT of questions about “Baroque Flamenco Bootcamp!” The course started yesterday. Registration closes Wednesday at midnight — so I want to answer those quickly!
The #1 question I’m getting is whether it’s possible to play this piece as a therapeutic or hospice piece.
And the answer is YES. In fact, several people currently in the course specifically requested this so I’m adding a special module specifically about how to do that to this session of the course. And here’s a quote I discovered on YouTube yesterday about this very thing:
“I took ‘Baroque Flamenco Bootcamp’ last Fall and …was astounded first of all that I could play something without sheet music covering my face. I learned the little phrases one by one (almost like a child learns his/her first words in a language) and then I started putting them together.
Finally I learned how to simplify the piece and play it in a whole different mode for hospice patients. It’s months later and I’m now working to play it AND use some poetry, psalms, personal words with hospice patients …
This course is DEFINITELY worth stretching yourself into the unknown…”
Margi Miller (USA)
The #2 question is “What am I actually going to learn??”
Harpists (including DHC) playing Baroque Flamenco.
That’s a great question because, of course, you learn much more than just the piece itself.
I’m fascinated with structure and how a strong inner structure supports creative expression. That’s one theme of my whole life, and everything I do — so it’s also how I create my courses and how I, personally, like to learn. I want to learn ideas and concepts that I can use over and over – and I want anything specific I learn to be a catalyst for broader learning that I can use over and over.
So by the end of the course you’ll be playing a specific piece, “Baroque Flamenco,” but what you’ll be learning is:
IMPROVISATION & COMPOSITION: We’ll use this piece to LEARN how to distill and simplify a piece of music, how to get down to its ‘bones’ and then how to build it up from there. That teaches you some of the fundamentals of improvisation, and also of composition.
MEMORIZATION: You’ll learn to see the structure of the piece so you can ‘learn’ it instead of memorizing it note-for-note. Many people come out of the course being able to ‘memorize’ for the fist time. They’re not really ‘memorizing’ – they simply understand how the piece works and so they’re able to recreate a version of it without worrying about the ‘note to note’ aspect.
STYLE & STRUCTURE: This piece is famous for being a fiery showpiece — but for years I played it as an introspective meditation. The structure was the same – the style was just different. We’ll work on both styles in the course – so you learn about style and structure and where they meet and diverge.
#3 “What if I miss a class? What if I’m out of town for a few days? Will the lesson be up longer than just a day?”
Don’t worry — you don’t miss anything. All the work is self-paced. You’ll have 6 MONTHS of access to all the lessons. You’ll also be able to download the PDFs and audio to your own computer – so you don’t need to rush or worry.
There’s only one live element that happens at a specific time — and that’s the weekly chat — (well, except that yesterday I did something really fun and had a live ‘office hours experiment’ where students could just ‘drop in’ with questions, but that was just for fun). Usually about a third of students come to the weekly live chat. The rest submit any questions they have in advance and then watch the video replay later.
You could actually take the course any time of the year as a ‘home study,’ but I personally need to ask questions – and get answers - in order to apply new learning, so that’s why I have the live element of the course.
#4: What if I can’t keep up?
We’ve got a bunch of ‘catch up’ days built in and I added a bonus integration week at the end to give everyone time to really digest the material.
My personal mission is that everyone will be have a playable-for-them version of the piece by the end of course and that’s why I’m there in the course with you – to help you create that if you run into problems.
Once you have your basic version and you understand how it ‘works,’ you can spend the rest of your life expanding and embellishing it – but you’ll HAVE your foundational version you can play right now.
But here’s a big thing. Here’s the real truth:
A lot of the time people ‘can’t keep up’ because they don’t know how to change the
thing they’re trying to keep up with so it fits them.
They don’t even allow themselves that option.
That’s part of what I help students with – to stop trying to fit THEMSELVES into the PIECE and learn to adjust the piece to fit them – and so IT becomes something they can do, right now, exactly the way they are.
That seems counter-intuitive to highly driven people (like me … and probably like you!) because we want those new skills – we want to train ourselves to BE the kind of person who CAN do the thing we can’t do!
And then we get stuck in that loop – of striving to achieve and then just constantly living inside that striving.
What I learned is we need to achieve fluency, not some ideal of performance. For me, fluency means two things:
Embracing imperfect completion and …
Simplifying and distilling ’til I have a version I can actually
perform. Right now. As I am.
Once we hit that point of fluency – even at very simple level of technical ability — and completely embrace it, we can finally actually perform as ourselves.
We become one with what we are doing. And then … we begin to naturally evolve. Once we’re finally moving at our own speed, with ourselves – we can apply new skills and techniques to this thing we can actually DO.
It blooms – and we bloom with it.
It stops being a ‘thing we achieved,’ and the piece becomes a life-long companion, ever-evolving and ever-open to helping us evolve.
(Sorry for going on about this – and I know it’s kind of esoteric – but this is really, truly what’s most important to me about the whole issue of trying to ‘keep up’ and ‘feeling behind’ and what this piece has given me in my life!)
#5: Why the heck should I pay $397 to learn the piece when I can just buy the sheet music for $17.95?
Aha! I honestly thought the same thing when I wrote the sheet music! I thought everyone and her sister would be able to just sit down and play Baroque Flamenco – and everyone would just be playing it — after all, it was all written out now.
Blllllleeeeep <== (Wrong answer Buzzer sound).
Boy was I wrong! What happened instead was what so often happens – despite our best intentions — we hit a snag, we lose steam and we drift off. Then we feel like the piece is just something we ‘should have done and didn’t.”
So many people told me they bought the sheet music … and then just never played it.
This is totally normal! It’s unrealistic to expect ourselves to simply be able to apply something new just because it’s written out!
Unless you have a teacher who knows the piece many people pay that $17.95 and just feel intimidated by the notes!
If they do end up playing it they don’t always know how to get the most out of it. And certainly no idea how to adapt it, simplify it, embellish it, psych it out to make it easier to learn and memorize, and give character to the flamenco techniques, turn it into a meditative piece or make it their own.
This is exactly why I created the course! I realized that I needed to combine the written-out music with video lessons and the ability to ask questions and get direct, personalized answers – because I want you playing this in a way that makes you totally shine – whether you are a professional concert harpist or a fledgling player.
(Actually, I originally created the course for professional-level players who where preparing it for concert – then realized that all the same principles applied for playing the piece at any level.)
So, the thing is … that ends up coming down to a little more than $75 a week — to work with a master teacher (for the 4-week course and a bonus integration week). And right now there’s a discount code, “SPECIAL” (all caps) that gets you $50 off — so that brings it to under $70 a week.
Would you pay that to work with a master-teacher, and to actually be able to end up playing the piece?
If you said yes, then the course is for you and you should go sign up right now!
If you said no, then this wouldn’t be the right course for you right now, and don’t click that link, whatever you do!
#6: Can I take the course for free?
Well … actually … you could! People in my “Harness Your Muse” program get all my online courses for free the whole time they’re in the program, so if that’s something you want to investigate, check out HarnessYourMuse.com.
I hope that answers all your questions …
But if it doesn’t, use my “Ask A Question” form!
Class started yesterday, and registration closes tomorrow (Wednesday, 3/25/15), so you only have a few more hours before the doors close. I hope you’ll join me on the inside of those doors!