14 Feb 2017 -
Before the recital, I train my students to be performers. This is a sample of what I teach students:
1) The performance starts when you get out of your seat and start to walk up to the piano. Look confident and sure of yourself. 2) Sit down and put your music on the music rest of the piano. 3) If you are using the pedal in your piece, put your foot on the pedal before you begin. 4) Look at the keyboard and make sure that you put your hands in the correct place for your piece. 5) The is the most important step: Once you begin your piece, if you make a mistake, do not pause or make a sound or shake your head. Try not to start over. Try to recover and keep on going. 6) After finishing your piece, pick up your music and face the audience. With your music tucked under your arm, smile at audience then bow (look at your toes for 3 seconds). You are thanking your audience for their applause.
Professional pianists make mistakes, but they do not let you know. They continue regardless and their countenance never shows the error. You must practice performing just as you practice the notes in your music. Have a parent or relative or friend sit down and listen to you. Practice following the 6 steps above. Above all, let the joy of sharing your music overcome your fear of not playing every note exactly perfect. Enjoy!