Santa Clara University

Benson Memorial Center


Feb 18, 2014
noon - 1:30 p.m.
Music and Dance Facility, Recital Hall
Cost : FREE

MASTERCLASS: Beyond Your Hands, Beyond Your Lips: A Preventive Approach for Optimal Music Performance

Music Department

WHAT: WORKSHOP & MASTERCLASS: Beyond Your Hands – Beyond Your Lips: A Preventive Approach for Optimal Music Performance
WHEN: February 18, 2014 - 12:00-1:30 PM
WHERE: Music Recital Hall, Santa Clara University

Open to all performers! (instruments and voice)

- Have you ever experienced any playing-related pain or injury?
- Wondering what are the best posture habits to prevent pain caused by playing an instrument or singing?
- Are you interested in Music Physiology?
- Interested in improving stage confidence, breathing, posture, freedom of motion while performing?

This workshop with Dr. Carina Joly is an introduction to the basic science regarding good posture for musicians (both seated and standing positions), and will include exercises tailored to each position. Two or three volunteers will be invited to perform a 30-second segment of their repertoire before and after doing the exercises and a video of these performances will be recorded. The audience will be invited to watch the videos and to discuss changes in posture and sound observed in each volunteer.

BACKGROUND: An alarming number of musicians suffer from occupational health problems. Studies have shown that two thirds of professional musicians deal with playing-related problems, while half of musicians still in training (i.e. before becoming professionals) experience symptoms of pain and other physical discomfort related to playing.

The strict requirements of music study surely contribute not only to the physical, but also to the psychological and emotional pressures of a musical career. In spite of the high occurrence of pain among musicians, access to preventive treatment remains scarce in the majority of music study institutions. The early 2000s saw a rise in the interest in preventive techniques amongst instrumental and vocal instructors, resulting in the development of the first specialization programs in the new field of Music Physiology and in the inclusion of related courses in the curricula of conservatories worldwide. Students exposed to physiologically oriented training have confirmed the improvement in relevant areas such as posture, breathing, freedom of motion while performing, and confidence on stage.


1. Provide musicians and music instructors with practical information on the prevention of playing-related injuries;
2. Identify common postural behavior among musicians;
3. Introduce preventive exercises developed by medical doctors and physiotherapists especially for musicians; and
4. Discuss body stabilization and its implications for musical performance.

Dr. Joly is finishing a post-graduate Diploma of Advanced Studies in Music Physiology from Zurich University of the Arts (ZHdK), Switzerland, and is a Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance and Pedagogy (degree awarded by University of Oklahoma, Norman).

The workshop is free and open to the public. For more information, please contact SCU faculty Bruno Ruviaro (, who is organizing the event.

Please RSVP if you would like to receive a printed certificate:

More Information
Bruno Ruviaro
(408) 554 4428
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