do you think people who wants to learn Piano and Biola,at age of 30 are too old to learn them,,,many doctors issue many statements that,,,,older means slower...do you think learning 2 music instrument will just increasing their minds?
I dont think there is ever an age that is too late. Training the mind to work well is possible at any age, its just a matter of conditioning. Of course natural process of life (full time jobs, marriage, kids, responsibility, etc) can make you misguided and lose perspective on how to stay focused, energized and creative. But I think if you can afford the time to be self-absorbed in your music, there is nothing that can hold you back.
Well, it'll help them to save their memory and train their brain for the time they get old. Starting a new instrument at age 30 might be a little hard, but it isn't impossible. Nothing's impossible actually! :)
Sorry to bring some negative info in this discussion. If you did not intensively play piano before age 17-18, your palm and fingers will never be flexible enough to play virtuosic or transcendent pieces. You will play piano only as an amateur. This will not, however, hinder you from enjoying piano transcriptions of great masters (e.g. Goldenweiser's transcriptions of Beethoven's symphonies, Bach's transcriptions of old masters), transcribing orchestra scores, accompanying, etc.
So, you will be able to use the universality of piano, but not some of its specifics.
I agree with you Andrew, if ones goal is to be a concert pianist and live the competition circuit and seek employ as a piano soloist for the major symphonies. But I think for just about anything else, one can adapt with time commitment to practice and dedication. Its very possible to become a master of the instrument in other ways than concert performing, especially for the sake of composing, but in other ways also ;-)
Well, I said exactly this. If one already cannot become a circus acrobat working on a trapeze, he (she) still can be a jongleur, a weight lifter, a comic, a director of a show, and even a circus owner.
All the UNIVERSALITY of piano is open for this person except some special things; I can give examples if this is interesting. Just look at Liszt's etudes.
I have a piano student who started taking lessons when she was about 48 yrs old. We've been working for 3 years and while she couldn't stretch an octave when we started she can now stretch a 9th. She is also participating in jam sessions. Her goal is not to become a professional musician, she just wants to have fun playing music. That's what we have worked on and she now enjoys getting together and jamming with friends. She has gotten over her fear of playing in front of people and is having fun with her music. Since I started teaching her piano she has started playing the drums and just a couple of weeks ago she started learning the harmonica. She is very good about practicing both the piano and drums. For me that's the most important part, you need to spend time at your instrument to really learn it. It's never to late. Have fun!
As if on cue...I happened on to this book in the library right after reading this discussion: Mozart's Brain & The Fighter Pilot by Richard Restak, M.D.
and flipped it open at random. I came across the following passage and thought you might find it interesting:
Chapter 4 Your capacity for learning remains and may increase as you grow older
Traditionally, neuroscientists believed that once the human brain achieved adult proportions, it remained stable over the next several decades and then underwent an inevitable decline in structure and function. They also believed that lost brain cells could never be replaced. Neither of these formerly hallowed tenets is still thought to be true.
According to recent research, brain cells continue to multiply in the hippocampus, an important center for learning and memory. In addition, the brain is not a static structure, but exhibits a remarkable plasticity over time according to the richness of the person's experience. For instance, professional musicians use more neurons in brain areas related to music when compared to the brains of nonmusicians. Even when they're just listening to music, musicians activate more neurons than non-musicians. Although these changes vary according to the years of musical instruction, it is never too late to enhance the musical appreciation centers in the brain."
I was actually denied lessons on the violin: I was told by more than one teacher I had started "too late" and would never amount to anything (and essentially be a waste of the teacher's time). (Despite not even being allowed to play for them!) Fair enough. I taught myself. I'm a fairly decent violinist now and always learning, despite having started "late" and having been mostly self-taught, though admittedly extremely self-conscious in performance for having spent so many years berating myself for not having made the decision to study straight from the womb. [I have studied hard on my own and now teach all ages of students, no matter how old they are.] So, you can imagine my surprise when, as an adult, I have run into several string players who all started between the ages of 11 & 13, not to mention a professional opera singer who didn't start singing until he was 20. I repeat, they are ALL currently professional performers. I cannot turn back the hands of time, but can say that I did waste many, many years believing what the professionals told me--that I was "too old to learn"!
I also ended up being stand partners in an orchestra gig (playing viola) with a woman a few years ago and talked with her during break. I was shocked to find out that she was 54 and had only started playing when she was 50. She played AMAZINGLY well! She said that's what she wanted to do and that's what she did! I did not notice any glaring physical deficiencies, her technique was impeccable, her playing musical, & her reading without fault. After that experience, I will never believe the statement "too old to learn"!
Don't listen to anybody but your own heart and see what YOU are capable of doing, not what some doctors thinks you are capable of doing! (They often change their minds anyway.)
This became a very interesting discussion. I hope I was not right with my warning about the finger flexibility. Although I do not have good examples from the musical field, in other professions indeed there are brilliant people who achieved great success starting their study quite late. I know at least one example of brilliant writer who started writing in 52. As for the body flexibility, there exist even techniques of "rising a new spine" from the old one, and of improving the sight sharpness (cf. Norbekov's lessons). So the intelligence and motivation of a person can substantially overcome the body limitations. It would be very interesting to conduct a historical research about great musicians started their study late. As an example, Aram Khachaturyan started professional musical study in the age of 19 (before that he studied mathematics and planned to be a mathematician).
Shinichi Suzuki began to play/study violin supposedly at the age of 19. Perhaps he never became the best violinist; however, his impact on the world of violin pedagogy has been incredible. (Unfortunately, though, in ways he never intended by those who use the books without understanding the method, but that would be under a different forum's discussion!) Ironically, his method is geared towards teaching those who aren't even out of diapers.
There are some really good stories of Tai Chi masters being able to do incredible things at an amazingly advanced age...or things that the average Joe couldn't do at all (like my husband's Aikido instructor who decided to grow his hair black again after years of being completely white headed--and DID!)
Anything is possible with enough discipline, training and mindfulness.
Didn't Grandma Moses start painting in her 80's, give or take a few decades? :)
btw, and please feel free to check me on this, but I believe young Mozart really set the stage for early beginnings; however, I *believe* this was NOT the norm, rather the exception. I have read several pedagogy books from pre-Suzuki that claimed lessons should not start until after the age of 7 yrs.
I have always had on my list of to-do's to read a book support of the Suzuki method called, Rarely Too Young and Never Too Old To Twinkle Suzuki should know; it's the rest of us who shouldn't be so pessimistic!