May 18, 2013

Performance and competition: a personal link with the Olympics

How does music relate to the Olympics? Both involve music, physical ability, practice, discipline, and competition. And Tomoko is involved directly because her daughter Beata competed in the Olympics in couple ice skating. Here are some of her experiences.

Tomoko took her two year old daughter to the skating rink as a fun way to exercise; Beata’s teacher said that skating was better than being in the park – and more elegant. Beata began serious skating at age 6, but didn’t compete until the U.S. Nationals, rather perfecting her form first. Tomoko supported Beata’s persistent interest throughout the school years, driving her to practice, and paying for lessons through teaching piano. Tomoko notes, “Both ice skating and piano require lots of sacrifice. Even one week without practice will be embarrassing.”

Competitive skating was Beata’s dream, and Tomoko also advises her piano students to have a dream: “Improvement is harder without a dream. If the road is right you will reach up, stepping up nicely.” Tomoko accompanied Beata to competitions. For example, Tomoko helped her daughter navigate airports and transfers. They would see judges on the plane, but not interact because that was part of the process of being professional. Tomoko remarks, “All my efforts and experiences in competition can be good advice.” 

The actual competition is a suspenseful time; “It’s like a horse race, waiting for the results,” says Tomoko. She goes on to say, “To be accomplished once in your life is something you cannot buy. It makes you a leader.” Tomoko knows that feeling, for she has competed successfully for years, and has the accolades to prove it – as well as the quality of her performance.