There is a massive difference between playing in an ensemble, wether it is an orchestra or a rock band, and performing a solo piece in front of a live audience.
The soloist has no safety net whatsoever. There is only him or her and the audience. It is one of the purest forms of communication. Whatever that soloist is thinking, it travels directly through the instrument and into the audience’s ears. No filters. No editors, or managers, or artifice of any kind.
The mind of the soloist and the audience communicate directly peer to peer. One of the really powerful things about this is that the soloist is projecting his or her musical ideas into the minds of dozens, or hundreds or thousands of people simultaneously, depending on how large the audience is.
When it goes well, and the audience goes nuts? There is nothing better on this planet.
So how does a solo go well? In short, you have to prepare. You have to plan the structure, map out the ideas, then refine your ability to execute on those ideas by practicing over and over and over, until they become second nature.
Here is an example of what it sounds like when everything goes right: grooveKSQ student Thomas L, performing at his middle school jazz band concert, brings the house to its feet - in the middle of a high school jazz band chart.
Thomas worked very hard on this, and when it was time to perform, he hit a home run. Listen to the end and judge for yourself.
THIS is what we do here at grooveKSQ: Prepare students to succeed.