Vienna Talk 2015 on Music Acoustics
“Bridging the Gaps”     16–19 September 2015


Performance space: The spotlight and its implications for performance psychology

Williamon, Aaron 

Proceedings of the Third Vienna Talk on Music Acoustics (2015), p. 205


Professional training in music often lacks repeated exposure to realistic performance situations, with musicians learning all too late (or not at all) how to manage the stresses of performing and the demands of their audiences. This lecture will explore the physiological and psychological differences between practising and performing, specifically examining cardiovascular and neuroendocrine responses in musicians when performing under pressure. It will also introduce the Performance Simulator, an innovative new facility which operates in two modes: (i) concert and (ii) audition simulation. Initial results demonstrate that the Simulator allows musicians to develop and refine valuable performance skills, including enhancement of communication on stage and effective management of high state anxiety.


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