Playing in Pain


A twinge in your finger, tightness in your forearm, a pain in your shoulder; when practicing intensely or playing at a high level these are all normal experiences for a musician. Unfortunately, our reaction to a playing-related injury is often anything but normal. Many times musicians react to pain as being scary and something we should hide from others and suffer through in silence. But by hiding these experiences, musicians are creating a negative stigma around injury rather than seeking help for an issue that can be easily treated.

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About Author

Angela Schwarzkopf is a professional freelance harpist and teacher in the greater Toronto area. President of the Toronto Chapter of the American Harp Society, Angela is the first harpist to pursue a Doctorate of Music in Harp Performance in Canada. Angela is a course instructor at the University of Toronto, and a regular adjudicator at the Glenn Gould School of Music. This season Angela can be seen performing with Orchestra London, the Niagara Symphony Orchestra, the Kingston Symphony, and the Talisker Players, among other orchestras and ensembles. In her spare time Angela enjoys writing for Harp Column.

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