In addition to music and viola, my other passion is neuroscience, especially the study of music and the brain. I am especially interested in how neuroscience can help musicians get the most out of their daily practice and also how musicians’ brains differ from non-musicians’ brains.
Here are two recent papers that I wrote for the Journal of the American Viola Society:
Performing from Memory Doesn’t Have to be Terrifying: How Understanding the Science of Memory Can Help
TL;DR: if you don’t want to read the full articles above (although I encourage you to!), below are summary sheets for each:
While a graduate student at NEC, I wrote two papers on topics having to do with music and the brain, which you can read by downloading the PDFs below. Both need updates and revisions because of the constantly evolving research, so check back periodically for new and improved versions!
If you’re looking for a quick (and more up to date) summary of the practicing paper, this is what you want:
What Musicians Can Learn About Practicing from Currently Brain Research: The Quick and Dirty Cheat Sheet
And if you’re looking for a huge list of practice ideas (which is by no means exhaustive), here it is:
I also co-authored a paper with Dr. Anthony Brandt and Dr. L. Robert Slevc, published in the fall of 2012, that argues that language is a kind of music, not the other way around like everyone always claims. You can download that paper here:
When it comes to purely musical scholarship, my primary area of interest is viola pedagogy, specifically how to prepare advanced violist for the challenges of their largely 20th-century solo repertoire. I wrote my dissertation on the topic, which you can download and read here: