I recently read the latest entry from my fellow Hello Stage blogger, Christopher Coritsidis, who wrote:
“Then, it’s time to map out how you’re going to make your intentions a reality. With whom do you need to study, audition, and connect with in order to move forward in the right direction? The group of “who” is so important that they will probably make or break your career - seriously. Building a team of the right people and seeking out the right mentors will save you a lot of time and energy (and maybe money, too!) that would, otherwise, be proven fruitless. “
Being a musician is a tough job and no one should ever go it alone. The importance of having a trusted team has become more and more apparent to me over the years. What constitutes a strong team? What sort of people should you look for?
Teachers and Mentors:
Your relationship with your teacher can be one of the most
important in your life.
I know having a teacher I respect and trust
has been my saving grace.
At every stage of my growth and career,
I know can try new things, make mistakes
and grow from them under her guidance.
To me, few things are more valuable than
a teacher who knows your habits, your strengths, and weaknesses.
These are eyes and ears you can trust to be honest with you.
Find yourself a person who you can be vulnerable around,
whose aesthetic matches yours, someone whose criticism
you trust and someone who you know has got your
best interests in mind.
Whether it be coaches or colleagues,
fellow musicians are vital members of your team.
No one understands the the ins and outs of this sometimes
crazy business like someone who is also in it.
You do not always have to see eye to eye - in fact,
it may be helpful to surround yourself with singers and
instrumentalists from different genres,
experience, and musical backgrounds.
Sing together, make music together, ask one another for advice
and share ideas with one another.
It will help you grow professionally and can also build lasting
friendships and partnerships.
Friends and Family:
Musicians themselves or not, a strong group of friends
and family is important to your success.
These people can help you out of a slump, gain new motivation,
water your plants while you are on tour,
or to simply unwind after a long day.
Surround yourself with people you genuinely care for
and allow yourself to just “be”.
Finally, the most important person on your team;
Without a doubt, the most important person on your team is YOU.
As musicians, we are day in and day out constantly striving
to be better and this can lead not only to greatness
but also self-deprecation of the highest degree.
We so often get caught up in what we lack,
on what we need to improve.
You must 100% stand behind what you do and know,
trust and understand that your best is always getting better.
Believe in yourself, in your talent, and in your dedication. Critics can be harsh. The competition is fierce. If you do not believe in yourself, it is impossible for others to do so.
Anne Wieben is a freelance operatic soprano, currently residing in Vienna, Austria. For more information, check out her HELLOSTAGE profile
or visit her website: www.annewieben.com