Percy the Piano Cat and the nature of creativity

I’m having so much fun writing this blog and coming up with fresh ways to teach and inspire pianists that people will often ask me, “Do you actually like to do that stuff?”

Well, yeah.. I do like it. In fact, I love it!

One reason I love it so much is that people are responding to my efforts. It’s helping my students become more and more excited about piano and music in general, and I’m hearing from people worldwide who want to connect and share our mutual love of music. Both of these are amazing!

But there’s something else too. Something that has to do with the nature of creativity as I experience it. For me, “creativity” has to do with sensing the possibility of a moment, and having a vision of how things connect to fulfill that possibility. So whether it’s with music, a casual conversation, or in problem-solving, it’s all very similar. (Of course music and the arts have an emotional component that not all problem-solving has, but I’ll leave that for another time.)

So if I want to compose a piece of music, I’ll envision who’s going to play it, the type of audience (if I know where it will be performed), and who I am as a musician, and I usually get a sense of the piece right away. It’s like I don’t have to actually “create” it at all. It’s right there, in the “ether” so-to-speak. All I have to do is keep being sensitive and receptive to that vision and start writing the notes down.

For me it’s much the same process with day-to-day stuff like shopping for dinner or teaching a piano lesson. There’s a specific possibility and I try to be open to discovering what it is.

My latest project, Percy the Piano Cat, is just like this. I loved the whole process; from thinking of the initial concept, jotting down about 25 caption ideas in the first half hour, all the way to putting together the finished cartoon. And so, if you haven’t met him yet, heeeeeere’s Percy!!!


Have a great day, and see how much creativity you can participate in!

If you like to think out-of-the-box, here’s a way to approach your piano practicing.

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