Group 2

Mastering the art of subtle timing flexibility is crucial for delivering performances that are as expressive and speech-like as possible, captivating your audience's attention. Have you ever marveled at how the fluid manipulation of timing by your favorite performers adds depth and expressiveness to their music? If you aspire to imbue your musical expressions with similar vitality, or if you aim to perfect and evolve your ability to produce seamless legato, this course is tailored for you. We will introduce techniques designed to equip you with the skills necessary for integrating these practices into your own rehearsal routines with pieces beyond the scope of this course.

Course Highlights:

馃幎 Dynamic Timing Flexibility: Delve into the nuances of timing flexibility to achieve a more expressive and speech-like performance. Discover the secrets behind the captivating, ever-changing stretch of time that adds color and expression to music, drawing listeners into your sonic world.

馃敆 Legato Mastery: Explore the techniques to perfect your legato playing, ensuring seamless transitions and a fluid, singing quality in your music. This segment focuses on cultivating the ability to convey your musical ideas with the same vitality and expressiveness as your favorite performers.

馃洜 Technique Enhancement: Engage in specialized exercises designed to improve your timing flexibility and legato execution. These practices are crafted to help you integrate these skills into your personal practice routine, allowing for continual growth and refinement.

鉁夛笍 Customized Feedback: Benefit from personalized feedback tailored to your unique musical journey. This course offers the opportunity to receive direct guidance and strategies from an expert, enabling you to overcome challenges and achieve your musical goals.

馃 Collaborative Learning Community: Join a network of like-minded musicians and enthusiasts. This course fosters a nurturing environment for sharing insights, experiences, and encouragement, building a community of learners dedicated to musical excellence.

Enroll now and unlock the potential of your guitar playing like never before!


  • Sign-Up : NOW until March 17th
  • Course Period: March 18th until March 28th
  • Optional check-In via Zoom: March 23rd, 10 am PST


Assignments Week 1



  • Try to experiment with different tempos (bigger, smaller, etc.).
  • Always listen to yourself. If what you were playing was gradually becoming clear or audible, keep at it.
  • For exercises 4-7, it is important that you emphasize the melody and make the accompaniment quieter.
  • In exercises 6-7, you can use appoyando to bring out the melody.
  • Please send me videos of exercises 1, 2, and 3, and choose only one from 4-5 and one from 6-7.


Exercise one:

Exercise two:

Exercise three:

Exercise four:

Exercise five:

Exercise six:

Exercise seven:




Assignments Week Two

First exercise:

Second exercise:

Third exercise:

Fourth exercise:

Fifth exercise:




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  • Hi Borbala Seres I'm glad to participate in this TWI with you and I apologize for being late with my submission. Here's a quick 芦montage禄 of the requested exercises (that need more practice 馃槶), I did 3 takes of each and took the one that seemed the more valuable (or less terrible!). I'm also testing out a different setup than usual to ease sharing this kind of videos (the microphone needs a better position), and it looks like I got a buzz on the third fret due to extreme temperature changes we have here 馃く!

    • Blaise Laflamme exercise 4

      Your interpretation was such a beauty. The tention was there, you built it up very nicely very dramatic. Great job! So you see this is what I meant with the stretching of time! 

      Thank you

      Like 1
    • Blaise Laflamme exercise 6

      Your version was very nice!

      I am sure that you were cutting the bass notes intentionally because the rhythm was short, but you could try to play them longer than it's written, because that could help you to build up a bit more fluent Melody and musical phrase. This is again only matter of taste, I wouldn't play tenuto almost on each first melody note because as I said the phrase can easily fall into too many parts and then the listener cannot follow you. But please don't misunderstand me, I don't want you to play it in a complete tempo, that wouldn't be good. I just mean, you could handle the timing a bit more gradual. Try to listen to my recording, only if you want to work on it , and listen to the smooth flexibility of the timing. And listen to yourself back that you can understand what I meant with these tenuto places.

      I really hope that you didn't take it wrong way! Anyway it was really beautiful everything what you were doing, thank you!

      Excellent job

      Like 1
    • Borb谩la Seres Thank you Borbala for your detailed comments, very much appreciated 馃檹. Well, I'm not that hard with myself in a negative way (it could sounds like that) but as you said being maximalistic makes you see and hear things in a way that small details can ruin the whole picture, you know what I mean 馃槄. I agree with all your comments, and I rarely take comments on a personal level, always in a constructive way to enhance what I'm doing. I usually try multiple musical formulations, in an exaggerated way to help me identify the limits of what remains interesting and relevant, and up until I find what seems right. In this case #3 and #6 were a bit too much about small phrases and bass articulation as you noticed, I would have need more time to find my way for the bigger picture, I was still in the details of smaller chunks. Again thank you for your time and generosity, I appreciate and value your work and artistry as a musician (and as a guitarist of course!).

    • Blaise Laflamme dear Blaise,

      Of course I know all of these. Since I'm a maximalistic too, I can always realize the tiny little things which are not yet perfect.

      And I wanted to tell you that in the learning process I always used to do the same to experiment with the different kind of executions and exaggerate things. Actually my main problem used to be that I want to show too many details of the beautiful music and I used to overdo them sometimes or overshow it because I enjoy to play them so much. There is so much beauty in the music. So I tend to do the same. But therefore I always try to figure it out without the guitar, mental only in my head how it supposed to sound, how it sounds the best, because you can hear it much more clear without playing the guitar. Sometimes we are just too busy with the technique which will have an effect on the musical material too. It's also important to have a better picture let's say from the outside and therefore I make many times recordings to listen to it back if it was enough clear, I mean the musical idea, or if my musical character came through the music. 

      Thank you for not misunderstanding my comments. 

      Like 1
    • Borb谩la Seres Thank you for sharing your personal insights, I totally understand you as I have a similar process and I recognize myself in what you say. The 芦phase禄 where I overplay varies in time up to until the musical ideas flow in a good way, and/or up until the music reference is clear in my mind (including my emotional relation to it). I have to admit that I have an hard time playing notes without giving them a sense (or a context) even with single notes or just technical patterns! 馃槄 Recording is our friend!!

  • Greetings Borbola,


    i found some time after work to do the recording for exercises 1, 2 and 3.  I will attempt to do the recording of the others tomorrow morning.  I do not believe that i can attend the zoom meeting at 13:00 EST (10:00 PST) later today (it is 1:14 AM EST). 


    When i review the sequence of exercises that you have given us, i understand that exercises 1 to 3 were meant as basic exercises to practice/warmup and get the feel of rubato and get us up to speed with legato playing.  Exercises 4 to 7 introduce the rubato in well known studies.  The suggested rubato are very interesting but you did not provide any justification that would help us understand your thought process that resulted in these interesting and beautiful exercises .  What i am now looking for the next week (or perhaps in the zoom meeting) is that you provide us with some insights on how to decide where/when to wander into rubato land.  (music tension buildup, resolution etc..).  I am always hesitant to insert some rubato in my playing and tend to stay on a steady beat because i want to stay in the main stream.    Hoping that you can help us grow our musicianship with your explanations. 


    For the time being, following is the link to my first 3 exercises:



    Best Regards,


    • Michel Giroux Hello Michel,

      Thank you for your videos!

      You are absolutely right all the first second third and actually also exercises 4-7 meant to help you to prepare you for the legato execution and for the time flexibility for rubato playing.

      Exercise 1

      It was really nice gradual.

      I think it could help you to make it even more secure if you imagine the way of the execution and the graduality before the playing. If you have a very clear imagination of it then you can execute much easier and much more perfectly.

      Thank you

    • Michel Giroux exercise 2

      It was very nice I find your bass legato very good. It was almost every perfectly only in some cases you touched the string with your thumb a tiny bit earlier. But actually it was not so audible, so I would say that you did a really great job. 

      Just pay attention that your  left-hand fingers never come earlier then it's necessary. Sometimes because of the preparation of the next finger you touch a little bit earlier the string which increase the stopping of the resonance. 

      Great job thank you

    • Michel Giroux exercise 3

      It was also very nice thank you!

      Alternated stroke is always a beast because we have even more factors which we have to focus on . I believe that the guitar is one of the most difficult instrument. It depends on so many tiny little details that we have to manage at the same time and to be able to focus still on the music is really challenging us. So that is why I try to find metaphor for each movement of each hands and patterns, because if we can compare it with something or with some idea , kinesthetic feeling, or experience of our life it will become easier. And I can tell you, playing the guitar easily it's always just about the right movement. If you find the proper movement then everything will become completely easy and natural it will work by itself.

      Your exercise 3 was nice and you handled this delicate issue really good. It happened only a few times that you put your left hand fingers a bit earlier and then as I said it increases a kind of non legato.

      My metaphor for legato playing is like you would play the piano with your both hands at the same time. Only the direction of the left hand is different. 馃槉

      Great job thank you

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    Week Two Assignments are posted, see you in the TWI Check-In!

    Date & Time: March 23rd, 10 am PST

    •  Borbala Seres Thank you for the Zoom session, I was able to listen to most of it but somehow my computer was always disconnecting! 

    • Blaise Laflamme Yes, I could see, no problem. I am sorry that you had this trouble with the connection. But good news, will be able to listen to it back probably very soon. 馃槉

      Like 1
    • Borb谩la Seresmeand if you would have had any questions to me just don't hesitate to ask me here! 

      Like 1
    • Borb谩la Seres sure I'll do, thank you!

  • Here I send you two PDF files. After your conversation about recording yourself in practice room (in group one) I thought it could be also useful for you to know all the possible details you could check during an observation. Have fun! 馃槉

    • Borb谩la Seres Thank you for sharing these two PDFs, good reference for both musical and technical stuff! 

    • Blaise Laflamme Thank you Blaise.

      I was collecting these ideas when I was making that tonebase streaming about "quick tips to improve your technique and musical expression". Maybe it's not complete, but I think the basics which we should observe are there. 馃槉

      Like 1
  • Hello Borbala,

    Here is a video the week1. My main difficultie is to play forte : quality of sound, lack of precision (see ex n掳5)...

    I know there is a mistake in the n掳5, but it was difficult to makeevery thing good in one recording

    Thant you very much for these two intersting weeks.

    • GALAIS Olivier Hi Galais,

      Thank you for the videos.

      Exercise 1

      I found your video really very good. Your acc. and rit. was beautiful gradually. I liked the way how you did it, you did more repetitions to build it up nicely and you were really listening yourself which is very important. 

      Thank you excellent job

    • GALAIS Olivier exercise 2

      Really beautiful. It was so nice that you also formulated it musically. Your legato seems very good . The synchronic is nicely there, only a couple of times you touched the string just a tiny bit earlier with your p finger. Pay attention that you are always coming from the air.

      Perfect thank you

    • GALAIS Olivier exercise 3

      Your alternated stroke legato is also very good. Try not to put the next finger of the fret notes earlier then it's necessary because that increases sometimes a kind of non-legato. 

      Also musically formulated, so I was glad.

      Thank you

    • GALAIS Olivier exercise 5

      It was really so beautiful musically. Great job! You chose to play some different musical ideas which I find nice too, that would be the final goal that you can find your own version. So I'm glad that you were brave enough to add some of your own ideas.

      Excellent job thank you

    • GALAIS Olivier exercise 7

      Also really very nice. The melody on the top was audible super clear, you could highlight it enough which guides are ear very good.

      We could argue about couple of musical solutions, but this is the bottom line that we express something with the music and the rest is taste matter, subjective. 鈽猴笍

      So thank you for it and great job again

    • GALAIS Olivier about your sound quality.

      Yes I can see and hear your problem what you meant. Indeed when you start to play forte it becomes a bit too harsh and kind of metallico. As I see the problem is with the right arm position. When you start to play forte you are sleeping down a bit closer to the bridge. That increase this kind of tongue quality. You become perpendicular with your a finger maybe also with m to the strings and not diagonal. Try to stay always diagonal if you wish for a softer and nicer ton quality. You should also pay attention that you are not sleeping with your right arm when you want to give power. I assume that when you have to play forte you are tensing your right arm a bit too much, and also you used to kind of conducting with it which can increase also this kind of contacting to the strings. Please try to use a mirror and come more close to the sound hole and closer to the threat board actually.

      The other problem what you mentioned lack of precision can come also from this tension of the forte. I cannot see exactly the angle of your plucking when you play louder but I assume that probably your fingers starting to move also a bit too big with forte and with tempo. Try to stay always a bit closer to the strings also when you are playing forte and try to prepare always all the fingers really close to the string which they have to pluck.

      Also the angle of your wrist doesn't look too relaxed and comfortable, but it's always different for each hand so I wouldn't say that it's a problem. You should know it better how you hear with it.

      And please look at yourself because when you are playing more piano then you used to come intentionally higher closer to the guitar hole. So actually naturally you do the good thing. That would be necessary also for forte.

      Please let me know if these instructions don't help you, but I hope that they will and you can get a better solution for it.

      (Tone quality is also depending on the shape of the nail, but since you have very nice tone during the piano I would say that's not the problem here.)

      Good luck! 

  • Nijwm Bwiswmuthiary Michel Giroux
    Hi Everyone!

    There was some questions about rubato playing, so I made a video about this topic. I hope it will answer everyones questions.

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