Enhancing Musical Performance through Somatic Pedagogy
About Body Mapping
Body Mapping is a self-inquiry somatic (mind-body) educational technique that teaches musicians the skills to attain freedom of expression through poised and dynamic musical movement by understanding neurophysiological connections (body maps) in the human body. Quality of movement is critical for musicians because movement is the underlying basis for musical communication and expression.
Body Mapping is based upon the scientific fact that the brain contains neural networks (body maps) of the bodily structures and functions that govern our involuntary usage. It teaches freedom of movement though accuracy of the body maps related to our musical movement.
Preventing injury and promoting technical facility are two primary benefits for musicians who master and apply Body Mapping principles in their performing. Research with university-level music students in particular showed a range of positive experiences including enhanced ability for musical expression (e.g. dynamics, phrasing, conveying emotional information), the ability to focus more easily on elements contributing to expressive outcomes, and greater personal confidence in being more musically expressive.
© Photo by Mike Peters, Montclair State University.
Teaching the Art of Movement in Music