I’m sure you’re familiar with Staples’ “that was easy” button. I just got one, and it sits on top of the piano.

My students just played beautifully at a recital on the weekend, and now they are all ready for some wonderful new pieces. As we look over the new music, I point out the most difficult sections, and I ask, “How can you make this easy?”

While we discuss the best strategy to deal with the problem, I remind them that the practice section needs to be small enough and slow enough to be easy. The results have been amazing. Perfect note reading after one or two attempts. Perfect hands together after one attempt. Perfect fingering after two or three attempts. Confidence. Enthusiasm. Anticipation.

Success.

That was easy.