I have been teaching piano for a long time now, and every once in a while a scared parent will say to me: ”Help! My child wants to become a professional musician! But I hoped he would be a doctor, a lawyer, a business-man…you fill in the blanks…. My child will be forever poor, disrespected and have a hard life for the rest of their life.”
I just stand there in disbelieve at such comments and think to myself: “Only last week you were glowing about your child’s solo she got in orchestra and the success she had in her piano recital, and today you are all freaked out at the notion that she might want to do music professionally???”
How crazy and silly is that!!!!! They think their kid will be doomed to a life of poverty, kissing up to the “Kings and Queens” of the world. But Beethoven already took care of that problem, he kissed up to no one. As a matter of fact, one day while playing a concert at the King’s castle, the audience, consisting of noblemen and royalty, was very noisy, talking and not really listening to Beethoven’s piano-playing. Finally Beethoven had enough, got up, stormed out of the room saying: “For such pigs I do not play!”
Yeah, go Beethoven! Good for you!
Who in the world got society to believe that the only “safe” degrees are in medicine, business, computers and science????? Kids will not study those things instead of music, but they might study those things and be super successful at it, because of their musical background. This is what MUSIC teaches YOUR CHILD, that nothing else can teach your child:
1) How To Be Disciplined: working diligently on a piece of music for an upcoming concert, recital or audition, while the other kids are playing outside and having fun without you.
2) How to Hone a Skill: refining the vibrato on a string instrument, or overcoming a seemingly insurmountable, difficult technical spot in an advanced piece of music. Mastering a certain rhythmical difficulty.
3) How to Handle “Failure”: Failure is simply a judgment placed on a result.
Children who play a musical instrument see “failure” as a gift, because they learn that there is no such thing as failure.
For example, they come back disappointed from not getting the desired part or solo or a gig, but they keep going anyways, learning from the experience. They know this truth: you cannot control the direction of the wind, but you can adjust your sails to reach your destination.
4) How to Concentrate: staying focused and in the music, even when a million distractions are calling your name.
5) Music Prepares You For Future Job-Hunting- Experiences and Makes You Grow a Thick Skin:
Going to auditions in freezing cold churches at the crack of dawn. Singing or playing at a corporate event, where you wait in a filthy kitchen for your entrance.
You learn to roll with the punches of any audition or interview: you go, you perform, you leave. If the decision-makers like you, great! If not, great! You learn to stay at ease and keep your composure. You stop being so codependent, and you learn that you don’t live your life to please others.
You find out that you cannot control others, but simply do your best and your destined way will be illuminated.
6) Kids Involved in Music Are Smarter: Music-Kids could major in anything. Do you seriously believe that a child with a degree in piano or composition won’t make it in the real world, and will end up playing for spare change in the streets?
That’s ridiculous. Children who are actively involved in music-making outperform every other group of undergraduates when it comes to taking grad-school exams.
Music-Kids become entrepreneurs, leaders and creators, whether in the music, business or somewhere else.
7) Music Kids Are Surrounded by the Most Brilliant and Successful Leaders In the World: Don’t you think that Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, Brahms, Rachmaninoff and countless others are great role-models for your kids? Don’t you believe that their current music-professors will keep igniting their flames and guide them to make the best choices for their lives and reach their potential every day?
Don’t teach your kids to be fearful of music and stick to ‘safe’ career paths (which are anything but safe, as it turns out), but teach them to “Play The Music That Is Within Their Hearts.”
Help! My Child Wants to Become a Professional Musician! And That’s OK!!!