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Comment: Re:Gladwell (Score 1) 187

by u38cg (#48034025) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise
Getting to the Met involves a lot of things, only one of which is vocal skill. A random adult would not have a lifelong network of contacts, experience, acting skills, and a depth of knowledge of the repertoire that someone who grew up doing it would. And there are certainly arguments that brain plasticity and physiology plays a part in developing talented child musicians in a way that may not be replicable in adults.

But that aside, yes, an adult can be trained to a high standard of opera singing, sufficiently so to take on significant roles in commercial productions. Bearing in mind, of course, that we are talking here about 5-10 years worth of daily training - but it is possible. Just rare.

Comment: Re:Gladwell (Score 1) 187

by u38cg (#48033951) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise
"fast"=/="good", but even leaving that aside, I'm sceptical. Fast solos on guitar don't involve that much lefthand speed in absolute terms. I suspect it is something about the way you practice or think about your own performance. Musicians are their own worst enemy when it comes to improving their skills and a large part of my job as a teacher is breaking down roadblocks so that you can actually improve. A lot of teachers don't recognise this (and I suspect it's worse for instruments like electric guitar where teacher training may be, well, variable).

Comment: Re:Teachers know this (Score 1, Flamebait) 187

by u38cg (#48025733) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise
No, your wife recognises the people that fit her teaching style and can't adapt to deal with the rest. I also teach people who arrive and on day one are fingers and thumbs. They have different challenges and need different support, but at least one of my pupils who arrived in this state is now a recording artist.

Comment: Re:Related work? (Score 1) 187

by u38cg (#48025725) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise
Yes. There's a book - something like "The Child As Musician" that goes into some detail about childhood musical skill acquisition. The lesson I took from that for my teaching is that different kids arrive for their first music lesson with wildly varying levels of musical skill, despite never having had a formal lesson in their lives.

Comment: Re:Gladwell (Score 3, Insightful) 187

by u38cg (#48025711) Attached to: New Research Casts Doubt On the "10,000 Hour Rule" of Expertise
As a music teacher, I have never - ever - found that I could not teach someone who practiced regularly and intelligently to be as good as they wanted to be. Your teacher was too damned lazy to teach you properly and as a consequence has denied you the ability to be the musician you could perfectly well have been. I can't comment on whether you ended up in a better place or not, but I can say, with absolute certainty, that your teacher was dead wrong.

Comment: Re:Google Stock Split 04/14/2014, 2 Classes of Sha (Score 1) 167

by u38cg (#48000869) Attached to: Now That It's Private, Dell Targets High-End PCs, Tablets
Yes, basically if you reinvest all your profit in growing your business you minimise your tax bill which is in some sense beneficial for shareholders. The overseas thing just multiplies the effect slightly. However, at the end of the day the only reason to own part of a company is to receive profits from it and if you're not receiving profits and have no expectation of receiving profits any time soon, you're putting an awful lot of faith in capital growth. This is Warren Buffet's great trick: he buys companies that pay strong dividend streams and reinvests the lot. Berkshire has never paid a dividend (well, once, in 1967).

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