William Fitzpatrick - violin expert

The Many Stories of Bill Fitzpatrick: Playing Sibelius in a competition

How disappointment can give you the right motivation to improve

In this video, Prof. Fitzpatrick tells a story about disappointment, motivation, and improvement.

Released on April 20, 2022

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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

In a competition in Texas I started by playing some Bach, a movement of a Beethoven sonata, a Paganini caprice and the first movement of the Sibelius concerto. Before beginning the Sibelius one of the juror members asked me if I could please start from the B flat just before the cadenza. I did but I really did not understand why he asked for that starting point but of course that is where I started. While I was playing, I suddenly understood... He was hoping that I would play the octaves passage at the end of the movement out of tune and so would then be eliminated. Well, that's what happened and I waited around to hear the results anyway. After the results announcement came I was silently furious and went back to my hotel room and practiced those octaves for what must have been 4 hours. Finally, I looked into the mirror and told myself ... don't you ever let that happen again...
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Comments, Questions, Requests:

Tosh * VSM MEMBER * on April 20, 2022 @1:06 pm PST
I've often noticed that many top notch performers, whether in music or in some other endeavor, have said that they learned much more from their mistakes than from their successes. Makes a lot of sense.
William - host, on April 21, 2022 @2:02 am PST
Its true, mistakes can be a blessing, if we learn from them! Thanks!
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