Benjamin Coy

Trombonist

Practice

Sounding bad

May 21, 2013 at 9:07 am

Few things annoy me more than when I play poorly. Whether it’s a performance or just a daily practice session, I really don’t like sounding bad. When I do, I get very frustrated and depressed overall, and it can affect not only the next time I play, but everything else I do in the meantime […]

Mock auditions

May 6, 2013 at 4:01 pm

When preparing for auditions, the best possible exercise is playing mock auditions for other people. Do everything you can to mimic the situation you’ll find yourself in. Play in an unfamiliar room, set up a screen, and have someone else pick the order of the excerpts. Get ready for unpleasant environments by playing in a […]

Long tones

April 26, 2013 at 9:45 am

In my last post, I mentioned long tones as an example of the kind of thing that can benefit from practice with a drone. I did so with some amount of resignation: I’ve never liked long tones. They may be the most boring part of my practice. By definition long tones are slow to get […]

Recording practice

April 20, 2013 at 1:52 pm

In my current practice schedule, I record myself playing at least one mock audition six days a week. Recording myself is an important element of my practice methodology for two major reasons. Most obviously, listening back to a recording allows me to objectively critique my own playing. By completely separating the processes of performance and […]