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The Musician's Way


A Guide to Practice, Performance, and Wellness

Gerald Klickstein

17 September 2009

ISBN: 9780195343137

360 pages

In Stock

Price: £22.99


In The Musician's Way, veteran performer and educator Gerald Klickstein draws on the latest research and his 30 years of professional experience to provide aspiring musicians with a roadmap to artistic excellence. Written in a conversational style, the text articulates landmark strategies that equip readers to advance their musical abilities and succeed as performing artists.

  • Delivers inclusive information for improving practice, performance, and self-care skills
  • Written by a nationally known performer and educator, from one of America's top conservatories, with 30 years of experience teaching musicians to perform at professional levels
  • Unites current research findings with the author's applied expertise to provide practical strategies that musicians can promptly put to use
  • Introduces a comprehensive process for practicing music to stage-ready condition
  • Presents a groundbreaking method for overcoming performance anxiety
  • Supplies key guidelines for productive musical collaboration
  • Includes case histories of musicians who surmounted obstacles to artistic excellence, as well as inspiring quotations from elite performers

About the Author(s)

Gerald Klickstein, Professor of Music, University of North Carolina, School of the Arts

Gerald Klickstein is Professor of Music at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and an active guitarist, author, and arts advocate. He frequently lectures at prominent music conferences and appears at leading American music schools and festivals where he performs, teaches, and directs original workshops. He currently serves as Artist/Member-at-Large on the board of the American String Teachers Association and is a member of the College Board's National Task Force on the Arts in Education. He also authors The Musicians Way Blog and maintains www.MusiciansWay.com, the extensive companion website to The Musician's Way.

Table of Contents

    Part I: Artful Practice
    1:Getting Organized
    Artful Practice
    Defining Practice
    Creating a Practice Environment
    The Five Practice Zones
    Planning Your Practice
    Scheduling Practice Sessions
    Choosing New Material
    2:Practicing Deeply, I
    Practicing Deeply
    Habits of Excellence
    Essentials of Artistic Interpretation
    Mental Imaging
    Warming Up
    3:Practicing Deeply, II
    The Craftsmanship of Practice
    Starting New Material
    Managing Repetition
    Solving Problems
    4:Practicing Deeply, III
    Ripening Your Repertoire
    Taking Breaks
    Memorization Concepts
    Memorization Strategies
    5:Practicing Deeply, IV
    Building Technique
    Upgrading Musicianship
    Fueling Motivation
    Committing to the Creative Process
    6:Musical Collaboration
    Musical Collaboration
    Interacting in Rehearsal
    Correlating Solitary and Group Practice
    Igniting Synergy
    Forming a Musical Group
    Part II: Fearless Performance
    7:Unmasking Performance Anxiety
    Fearless Performance
    Unmasking Performance Anxiety
    The Basic Anxiety Equation
    Anxiety's Effects
    The Roots of Performance Anxiety
    Portraits of Anxious Performers
    Crafting Confidence
    8:Becoming a Performing Artist, I
    Becoming a Performing Artist
    The Heart of Performance
    The Five Facets of Preparation
    Preperformance Routines
    Backstage Techniques
    9:Becoming a Performing Artist, II
    Stage Deportment
    Shaping Your Stage Presence
    Starting and Ending
    Harnessing On-Stage Energy
    Connecting with an Audience
    10:Becoming a Performing Artist, III
    Dealing with Errors
    Postperformance Routines
    Practicing Performance
    Evaluating Your Progress
    11:Performing like a Pro
    Performing like a Pro
    The Peak-Performance Myth
    Designing Concert Programs
    Three Model Programs
    Creating a Preparation Timeline
    Auditions and Competitions
    The Recording Studio
    Part III: Lifelong Creativity
    12:Injury Prevention, I
    Lifelong Creativity
    Musicians and Injuries
    Causes of Injury
    Warning Signs and Responses
    Injury-Prevention Basics
    Recovering from Injury
    13:Injury Prevention, II
    Balanced Sitting and Standing
    Meeting Your Instrument
    Voice Care
    Hearing Conservation
    14:Succeeding as a Student
    Succeeding as a Student
    Student-Teacher Dynamics
    Appreciating Criticism
    Embracing Career Challenges
    Counteracting Substance Abuse
    Boosting Creativity
    Selected Bibliography


"This book is a rare example of clear, concise and useable information on music practice... If I read a better book on practice this year I'll be surprised!!" - Mike Saville, HowToPractice.com

"the main strength of this book lies in the depth with which the author engages with the processes of practising and performing. The comprehensive way in which these topics are covered provides students with clear guidance to support many aspects of their musicianship." - Noola Griffiths, British Journal of Music Education

"One of the most important books on musicianship in recent decades." - Joseph Docksey, Director, Lamont School of Music

"A masterful work, which I believe will quickly be recognized as the finest guide to the art of musical performance produced by our generation." - Kevin Lawrence, Artistic Director, Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival, Professor of Violin, University of North Carolina School of the Arts

"I predict that The Musician's Way will be an instant classic. It is the most useful, comprehensive book I have ever read on developing the skills of a successful performer. Every music lover - student, professional, amateur, and teacher alike - should own this book." - Jeffrey Solow, Professor of Cello, Temple University President, American String Teachers Association

"An outstanding accomplishment... The Musician's Way should be on the shelf of every aspiring professional musician and every serious music educator." - Clavier Companion

"Klickstein covers the gamut of issues, tips, and ideas that make up the world of the serious musician... Students hunger for this kind of knowledge." - Notes

"Klickstein takes a common-sense approach and works his way through techniques for improving every aspect of a performer's life, from ways to memorise a piece to dealing with performance anxiety... It's all very well thought through and an interesting read." - The Strad

"A comprehensive guidebook from an experienced, insightful musician... You must read this book." - Stringendo

"A wonderful tool for all aspiring musicians" - Chad Criswell, MusicEdMagic.com

"You owe it to yourself to read this book." - Christopher Davis, ClassicalGuitarBlog.net

"Written in a light, conversational style...the many case examples bring reality to the text... A comprehensive guidebook from an experienced, insightful musician. If you think you know it all, you must read his book." - Mary Nemet, Stringendo.