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Music performance anxiety--part 1. a review of its epidemiology

Ariadna Ortiz Brugués
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 26 Number 2: Page 102 (June 2011)

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Abstract: Music performance anxiety (MPA) affects many individuals regardless of age, gender, experience, and hours of practice. In order to better understand the epidemiology of MPA, a review of the literature was done. Sixteen articles, meeting EBM criteria, were identified and analyzed. Children rarely suffer from MPA, while adolescents show symptoms similar to adults. Females are generally more affected than males. There is no relation between professional experience and performance anxiety. Great musicians such as Pau Casals and Enrico Caruso suffered from MPA. Nevertheless, students affected by MPA may decide not to become professional musicians because of their inability to cope with the devastating effects of performance anxiety. Solo performances showed higher MPA scores than ensemble performances. Despite these conclusions, long-term cohort studies with larger, homogeneous groups of subjects would be desirable, according to the evidence-based medicine criteria.

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