I can only pass on a word of caution gained through my own experience if you are intending to play from memory.
I went through grades 1 to 4 and although I had the music open on the right page, and even though I kept on throwing the odd glance in it's general direction, I never actually read a note of it during the performance.
During the grade 5 exam, I fluffed a couple of notes in the middle of a piece, which absolutely threw me out of sync and I got completely lost. I looked at the music to pick up where I had dropped off, but at that given moment, it was a load of dots on a page that resembled binary code and I was right up the creek without a paddle.
The net result was, I had to start again from the beginning
But the problem now is my confidence in my ability to perform, without reading the music, is shredded. So! I deicided that reading was the only way to get through it.
My main sticking point now is, because I have played the piece over and over, without reading the music for so long. And now I am forcing myself to read music I haven't read for ages. I have turned the piece into second sight reading test
Although I passed the exam
, I got myself a really bad score (19) for the piece.
So! I guess my advice would be to at least keep one eye *actually* on the music, just to keep a tab on whereabouts you are during the performance.
Just in case the pressure gets to you