Ask Augustin 24 - Musical vs Technical Questions
In this episode I talk about the distinction between musical questions and technical questions. I think it's best to think of musical and technical things as being connected: what we want to do (musical questions) and how we do them (the technical execution. Whenever you try to improve something musically (for example playing a beautiful long phrase, or changing the sound color somewhere) you will have technical problems to solve in order to realize what you have in mind musically. And the techniques we learn are only a means to an end, they are only there in order to help us express musical ideas clearly.
So I recommend thinking along musical terms even when you are trying to improve aspects of your technique - don't ever play unmusically, even if you're working on an etude! Always think about musical issues too.
And conversely, when you are mulling over musical question about expression, sound color, phrasing, structure - think immeditaely about how you will realize these concepts technically, what you actually need to do technically to get closer to your musical vision.