I have been making a (fairly casual) effort to learn the flute for a while now. Today I took another step forward, playing it in a semi-public setting – I have been attending a lunchtime choir at work and the flute was an ideal solution for providing a pitch reference (much easier to cycle in with than a bass!).
It was a bit nerve-wracking and my fingers slipped to the wrong keys once or twice but I think performing in public, even in such a relatively low-key situation, is an important step to gaining the confidence that leads towards fluency and a worthwhile level of skill.
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