Visitor Book

Your Stories – Here’s what others like you have had to say…

James Thomson

I am a ex military man who plays the pipes. Some of the tunes I play I find hard to memorise but I think with the help of your books this will improve tenfold.

Richard King

I have been playing pipes for over 30 years. I have had many musical hurdles during those years. Before reading “Practice Strategies that Cause Musical Improvement” I had already engaged in practice of this nature. Playing slowly enough where I can mentally say “down up” for each movement in something like a birl. This has worked great for me and many of my students; however, getting it to stick or work in a tune is the difficult thing. I have also taught that playing tunes at a very slow pace will help to integrate it into a tune, but I really like Stephanie’s suggestion of finding the difficult passage and then slowly working back from it. One thing I have recently started doing, which is very uncomfortable, is playing in a corner. You can still march if you want, but it’s almost like hearing a recording of yourself instantly, or it’s like listening to a performance from someone else. The precision in your playing can’t escape you or get lost in a big open room. It is very demanding on the brain, and I have a tendency to turn away so I don’t have to listen to how bad it sounds. I then force myself back into the corner and slow it down.

James Mullen

Found Stef’s webinars on cisco and have watched and gained very useful tips on how to imprint study material into the mind – the section on learning from text (Formerly known as reading) was very informative. Only problem is not with the webinars – they were great – but Cisco only has the first 2 sections available, would it be possible to get access to the remaining 4 sections please. Thank in advance for all your help and fantastic teaching. Jamie.

Bruce Mitchell

I was at Winter Storm 2020 in Kansas City Missouri and attended a class by Jack Lee and one by Stuart Liddell. Both are always enjoyable to learn from. After the classes I found two books by Stephanie Burns on Practice Strategies for Musical Improvement and Strategies for Learning and Memorizing Tunes at one of the vendors. Bought both books and found Jack Lee and Stuart Liddell used material from the books in the recent classes. The books are amazing. The methods of memorizing then learning was an eye opener. Proving it worked I took it to the band to try out. Using those principles we memorized measures, phrases – to a new tune. Then learned the first part, then the second part. You should have heard the initial grumbling “I NEED the music”, “this is not how I learn”, “this is not how my brain works” and “this is a gimmick”. By the end of the first rehearsal session they played the first part on the practice chanter without the music. By the end of the second week they had the second part memorized and learned – and played on the pipes slowly as a group. This was not a hard tune but they all commented about how quickly the band had memorized, learned and taken it to the pipes – without music to refer to (they had to “see it in their brain”). It was interesting to watch them play with their eyes closed “looking” in their head for the music. All have commented that the thoughts in the books work. Two have been motivated to buy both books so they can learn more. The new learning processes have helped me and by extension, the band, memorize and learn music quicker. I look forward to the next two

Sue Costello

Thank you, Stephanie, after your seminar and appearance at WIMWA I have a renewed enthusiasm. I would wake up every day tired and drag myself to work, now I’m waking up with new interest, finding there are not enough hours in the day and a thirst for learning and helping others. I had dedicated myself to raising my beautiful family. I am so proud of them, but I felt I had put my desires on hold for years and I hungered to rediscover myself and it was time for my family to walk their own paths. I have a new drive to try anything and I’m taking on new challenges out of my comfort zone. I do fail often and question myself but take lessons from each moment and keep moving forward. I would not have it any other way and love the feeling of fulfilment. It’s funny how you can hear the simplest thing and with just a few words it can change your whole perceptive on life, this has occurred with me in recent months. I have now joined The Smith Family Toy and Book Appeal for Christmas 2019 and applied to volunteer for the itrack online mentor programme 2020 and looking forward to see where the future takes me. Thanks again, you are an amazing women.

Sue Elsbury

Yay Stef!! Your website is back! Life is now back to normal…. 🙂