EppsNet Archive: Vladimir Horowitz

Teaching Computer Science: You Just Got to Really Want To

I’m volunteering a couple mornings a week in a high school computer science class . . . “Does anyone recognize this gentleman?” No one does. “Any pianists in the class?” About 5 kids raise their hands. “Do you ever go to YouTube and watch videos of pieces that you’re trying to learn?” Yes, they do. “Ok, this is Vladimir Horowitz.” Last time around, no one was able to identify Martha Graham. “I always know the name after you say it though,” one girl says. “Well, there’s more to life than technology, kids. There’s music, art, dance, literature . . . all these things help blow the dust off our ordinary existence. “I’ll get back to Horowitz in a minute. Last time I was here, I heard a conversation about how hard is it to go to college as a CS major. “I have some good news and bad news. I’ll… Read more →

The Best Advice I Got This Week

I was watching a Paul Barton YouTube video about piano practice . . . he said that when someone asked Horowitz how he’s able to play so many difficult pieces, Horowitz replied, “You just got to really want to.” That seems like excellent advice. It’s short, just a few words . . . you can remember it without even trying to. And I think it could be applied to almost any endeavor. Imagine someone listening to Horowitz and thinking, “Wow, that’s great! I’d give anything to be able to play like that!” But he wouldn’t really give anything. He wants to play like Horowitz but he doesn’t really want to play like Horowitz. He doesn’t want to practice 20 hours a day and give up everything else in his life. In any endeavor, reaching a goal often requires more than someone is willing to give . . . not more… Read more →

The Secret to Playing Difficult Piano Pieces

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