Friday, March 16, 2007

The risks to take in developing juniors

May I be granted more wisdom.
May I be guided to learn to lead people more effectively.

Maybe it is because I still need a lot more wisdom and faith, while I have decided to take the risks to allow one of my juniors to play for an upcoming concert, a small part of me is still feeling a little uncertain if I am taking more risks than I can bear.

I acknowledge that there is often uncertainties in everything. As such, in the end, I decided that rather than focusing on the risks involved, I shall look at the possibilities. The possibilities of allowing this very junior to experience the joy of music-making, and to help him realise for himself that if he would wishes to scale greater heights in music-making, he needs not just talent, but discipline and focus.

Actually this junior plays alright, at least average, except that he has yet to attend enough rehearsals as I would like him to. He does learn pretty fast and show potential to play the double bass fairly well. Given such potential, I am in the opinion that if he maintains his focus and practise more discipline, not only can he excel, but he can save all his other team-mates from having to worry unnecessary about him.

I think that playing in the orchestra is not just about playing the notes. It is about playing music as a team. It is also about learning to listen to the rest of the team, to watch the cues given by the conductor and the key players in the team, and play as an ensemble. As such, I hope this junior could assure me that he would do all these, so to assure me that it is indeed worthwhile for me to take the risks.

I could have decided to stop him from playing, and I would be technically right, because he has not meet the required attendance, because what counts is not how often I see him playing the double bass, but how often he attends the sectionals and the orchestra rehearsals. Because he has missed quite a number orchestra rehearsals, I found myself lacking faith to learn to trust that he will play together with the rest of us as an ensemble. Furthermore, to be honest, our section may be small, but we do not need him to make the numbers.

Then again, I shall like to think that there is something worthwhile from taking thoses risks. For one thing, he isn't a lousy player, and I trust that he has practised on his own. I shall decide to look at the possibilities involved: If taking a risk and giving him the chance to play in the concert may help him appreciate the joy and demands of playing in an orchestra (this is probably his first time playing in a Symphony Orchestra), maybe that would be just enough elements to help make him want to improve on himself. I reckon I can't force him to want to improve. He has to want to do so. I have faith that playing in an orchestra is such a joy that it may indeed serve as a significant motivating force.

So I decided, with knowledge of the consequences that I may have to bear if I had miscalculated, to look at the possibilities, and learn to take those risks involved.

But I am human. I can't help wavering a bit with uncertain. I could only hope this junior would prove that all my worries of him are unfounded. I hope he can do himself a good service by playing together with the rest of us as an ensemble.

Maybe one day he may learn to appreciate the chance that is given to him. Meantime, I hope one day he can outgrow his current way to life, and learn to realise that he needs more discipline and focus in his life.

Last but not the least, I wish I will have more wisdom to learn to handle future similar situations with greater stride and confidence.

Now, I keep my fingers crossed that everything will go well.

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