Smile, it’s contagious

African Djembe Player
Seny Daffe from Guinea teaches African drumming at the Zenbarn Studio in Waterbury, VT.

When my mom was alive. She’d come to see some of my shows. She’d sit in the audience, clap loudly, tap her foot and let everyone around her know that her daughter was the one playing fiddle on stage. She’d watch me with a big-ass grin on her face. It didn’t matter what I played or whether I played well or not, I could tell she was proud of me.

There was however, one critique she always gave me. Every show she went to she’d say “Trina, you need to smile more.”

Though I keep learning new things on my fiddle, the one thing that is the hardest thing to do while playing, is smile. I’m not sure why that is.

Today I went to an african drumming workshop. During the class, the teacher would teach us a rhythm that we’d all play together. Every now and again he’d go off and play a solo while we held the beat. Each time I looked over at him playing his solo, he was smiling so wide it was hard not to smile myself. It reminded me that if you’re having fun, or even if you look like you’re having fun, your audience will too. Because a smile is just like a yawn, it’s contagious.



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