Stage Fright in Music Performance
and Its Relationship to the Unconscious
by Michael I. Goode
review by Ed Vincent
A very well written book. It's research and
anecdotal entries are both vast and interesting.
Some aspects of the writing are at times high brow
and technical and the balance is reached with the down to earth examples
of actual case studies.
The book has the feel of being suited to the horned
brass orchestral player, but it is also a must read to music instructors
and parents who have children in the musical performance arts (singing,
The author Michael Goode has been sought out to give
some lectures and presentations to groups of stage actors from across the
nation (and soon perhaps global). His works before
these groups are targeted towards live theater and film actors. Mr.
Goode's work is a long time in coming and we are all pleased that he has
produced this book for the many who may find it both informative and helpful
in their individual situations. Mr. Goode has been interviewed and
written for publications around the
world and we are pleased to have him as wonderful
citizen, writer, and musician from Oak Park.
recommended book for those who want or need to
know more about stage performance.
Author: Michael I. Goode
Price: $ 24.95
The study of classical music, voice, and their performance
have been the subject of many books and magazine articles. Many of these
writings discuss the rules of etiquette, protocol, and musical style with
regard to performance of musical works in the orchestral and vocal field.
However, very few have touched on the role of the unconscious in music
performance. On the stage, few books have ever touched on the role of the
unconscious in acting.
There are both positive and negative aspects of the
role of the unconscious in the performance of music, drama, dance, courtroom
work, athletics or any other field. The positive aspects result in a joyous,
memorable performance, and the negative aspects result in a disastrous,
uncomfortable experience for both the audience, and even more so, for the
performer. When performers cannot display their talent to their highest
level of ability in front of an audience, it is most likely that they are
suffering from performance anxiety, more commonly known as stage fright.
There are underlying psychological reasons for the
condition of stage fright and its potentially devas- tating effects. These
reasons can also be described in physiological and biochemical terms. We
will discuss present medical and other solutions to this problem.
All of the case histories found in this book are composites
derived from many performers in the field of music including those in the
operatic and vocal field. Any resemblance to any one particular living
or deceased individual is unintended and is purely coincidental.
The book also gives examples of great performers from
the orchestral world, who had no stage fright at all, particularly the
legendary members of the Chicago Symphony Brass Section, led by Adolph
Herseth and including Arnold Jacobs, as well as William Scarlett. The fact
that these great performers had no stage fright whatsoever is analyzed
Included in this work are color photos, other illustrations,
an index, a glossary of helpful terms, and an extensive bibliography of
all the sources used to research this text.
Although this book uses examples from the field of
classical music, the concepts presented within are useful.