13 feb INTERVIEW WITH ELIN MARIE CHRISTENSEN
Interview with musicians who have immersed themselves in Timani over a period
Tina: Tell us about your path to becoming a violinist. What inspired you to start playing?
Elin: Mom and dad always brought my sisters and me to all kinds of concerts and performances from a very early age. I remember my little sister usually fell asleep during the concerts. I used to love sitting as close as possible to the performers and feel it all and I guess that’s what made me interested in maybe creating something like that one day myself. The fact that I chose the violin was rather coincidently or convenient, but today I’m happy I did:)
Tina: When did you know that you wanted to be a violinist?
Elin: When I started playing in my own little string trio I really started loving it! We used to get small gigs like weddings and birthday parties and the whole thing with performing and getting around with music was the thing that made me want to continue. It’s just during the very last few years I’ve really started enjoying practicing on my own (a lot because of Timani), so without the chamber groups (one of them; Sorella Quartet still exist) and the orchestras I played in, I’m certain I wouldn’t be playing today. I’m far too social to sit alone too much. It’s the interaction between the different musicians and the audience that make the magic moments for me.
Also, a few months ago I started realizing that it actually might be possible for me to become a violinist and still be happy, haha, and I guess that made me recommit to really going for it.
Tina: Why did you start learning Timani, and what have you gained from it?
Elin: I was kind of forced to start – and I’m so grateful for that now! I had an inflammation in my left arm during my very first semester at the Institute of Music in Trondheim, and luckily I met Tina through the physiology program there. Timani has changed my entire relationship to playing, both mentally and physically. It took away the whole personal thing with «I’m not good enough» or «I will never learn this and that» as I started realizing that playing an instrument is mainly learning how to use your body in a way so that it’s not in the way of the music running through you. I don’t know if it makes sense? With Timani the process of getting better became fun. Before I always felt like I was running late because I hadn’t done those 3 hours every day from the age of 3…
I was so relieved when I learned a concrete way of understanding what exactly produced the different sounds and where exactly to create the physical tension necessary to create musical tension. And I started understanding what the teachers actually tried teaching me, haha!
And of course not to forget – I today never experience any pain related to playing, before Timani I had pain 24/7 because of playing and even though my situation was extreme, I know a lot of musicians who think that being in pain is part of being a musician… you just have to put up with it… Now I know, this is not true.
Tina: What are your dreams around physical and mental mastery as a musician?
I have so many dreams! That’s what is keeping me going! I certainly want to keep exploring my technique until it feels 100% reliable and effortless, because I know with Timani it is possible. And I want to keep exploring how present I can be every time I’m on stage. I guess my biggest dream musically is to really feel like I give away the music exactly as I want it to be.
Tina: What would you say to inspire musicians around the world?
Don’t ever go around with pain without doing anything about it! The same goes for mental issues or problems with nerves. There is so much cool research out there about how the mind and the body works. And yeah, of course I recommend Timani since that is what mainly has helped me. I also practice a meditation technique called Ascension Meditation and I so much recommend finding a tool to get beyond the constant thinking of the mind.
So far I’ve never met a single person with a so-called «straight-forward-life». Mine has certainly not been like that, so finding a way to become present and from there accept whatever the situation is, is something I see as the only way I can really enjoy life a 100%. I experience a ridiculous amount of joy and ease in my life now that I never ever thought possible.
I guess you can sum it all down to one phrase; enjoy playing and enjoy life, if you don’t then do something about it! 🙂