Robert Estrin - piano expert

Why must performers be engaged in their performance?

Being engaged during performance must not be overlooked.

In this video, Robert talks about being engaged during performance. What difference does it make to be engaged during your own performance? Does it really matter?

Released on March 4, 2015

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DISCLAIMER: The views and the opinions expressed in this video are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Virtual Sheet Music and its employees.

Video Transcription

Hi, and welcome to and I'm Robert Estrin, your host, with a viewer question. Today's question is why must a performer be engaged in their performance? Well, it seems like an obvious enough thing. You'd want to be engaged, otherwise what the heck are you doing on stage playing if you're not even engaged? But, it goes deeper than that.

I can tell you years ago when I lived in New York City I was going to school there, and I went to a lot of concerts. There were occasions I'd hear some young, up and coming pianists who played brilliantly and had great reputations. Yet, I would find my mind wandering sometimes during performances. I was wondering what's the matter with me. More often than not when this would happen, there'd be a memory slip by the artist. I would think, "Oh, they were not engaged."

Here is a secret. If you want your audience to be engaged in the performance, you must also be engaged. The big challenge is a piece that you played hundreds of times, maybe thousands, working slowly, building up speed, breaking things down, putting them together, something you just live with so long, how can you be fresh and see it as a unique event? This is the challenge of the artist as a performer. You have to somehow get there, and at that moment have that adrenaline. Hopefully, the adrenaline goes to positive use to inspire something that you've never seen in the music before that you can bring to the audience, so it becomes a unique expression that moment creating something new. Keeping yourself engaged pulls your audience along with you, and that is the long and short of it and the importance of staying engaged in your musical performance.

Thanks for the great viewer questions. I am Robert Estrin here at and
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Morganna * VSM MEMBER * on March 4, 2015 @4:42 pm PST
Always look forward to listening to your suggestions and helps.
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