BAROQUE FLAMENCO – Discovering that you CAN!

A harpist, who didn’t think she could play Baroque Flamenco, discovers in 15 minutes that she CAN.

We all have opportunities for growth, feedback, and support in what we do. In Hip Harp Academy, Half-Bake and Final-Beginning Projects are the culmination of this.

Yet around the time of Half-Bake and Final-Beginning Projects, I get lots of emails saying, “Well, I feel behind and I don’t know what I’m doing.”

I know we often feel behind or that we don’t know what we’re doing – if you’re feeling that way, don’t worry, there are lots of people in the same boat. 

I want you to know that “Completion” does not equal “Perfection.” We can often be our own worst enemies, and that’s why I created “Half-Bake” Projects. This is a philosophy I created in my life so that I could get out of my own way. It’s easy to get stuck questioning if something is done or complete, especially as an artist. “Half-Bake” means that it’s designed to be unfinished, even bad. By completing a version, even a bad one, it shows you that you CAN complete it. 

That’s why I want to share this story with you. One of the Academy Members, Anne, had sent me an email saying she didn’t feel she could complete the Half-Bake Project for the Baroque Flamenco Beyond the Page class.

Anne had said:

“. . .I love the half baked projects, because they’re supposed to be half baked. They’re supposed to be not not done at all. . . 

I really want to accept your challenge to submit something, but it’s going to be woeful. That is, if I find time to film anything. . .

. . .can you please address the feeling of being behind to help alleviate the self condemnation and inadequacy students may be feeling?”

I heard Anne, and that’s why I wanted to help her right then and there. I asked Anne if she would be willing to be a guinea pig and actually create her Half-Bake Project right there in the chat with me guiding her.

In the video below, I showed Anne she could actually do a Half-Bake Project RIGHT THEN.

(Below is an excerpt from that chat. Anne comes on at about 9 minutes 30 seconds.)

This short session lead to the completion of Anne’s Half-Bake Project and gave her the confidence to submit the following Half-Bake Project. 

What really moves me about these projects is not the technical perfection of anything, but when I can actually see YOU through whatever you’re doing.

We all – me included – feel we need to reach a level of technical perfection, or perfection in something. 

But sometimes that level of proficiency can actually lead to hiding. I’m beginning to think that the level at which I finally feel I’ve gotten everything and I’m doing it right, may be the level at which I am so proficient that I’m actually hiding. Hiding behind the levers, pedals, strings, etc. for harp or behind the words for writing.

I have a deep belief that the way we create music is by playing its fundamental arc (what I call its bones). This is true even if we are playing almost NONE of the notes. It is especially true for music that is going to express ourselves and through which we’re going to be creative.

In this way, technical ability does not have to be a barrier to artistic expression. Anne’s project is an example of how easy and simple it can be. Though Academy members often think they don’t have the technical ability to play Baroque Flamenco with a little help she was able to create a whole project in only 15 minutes. 

You too CAN free yourself from technical ability and perfectionism – join us at Hip Harp Academy.

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