Send to

Choose Destination
Med Probl Perform Art. 2015 Mar;30(1):30-7. doi: 10.21091/mppa.2015.1005.

Music performance anxiety in young musicians: comparison of playing classical or popular music.

Author information

Freiburg Institute for Musicians' Medicine, University of Music and University Clinic Freiburg, Breisacherstrasse 60, D-79106 Freiburg, Germany. Tel 0049 761 270-61610, fax 0049 761-270-61690.



Music performance anxiety (MPA) is an issue frequently experienced by musicians. It occurs not only in experienced musicians but also in children and adolescents. Furthermore, most research on MPA has been done with musicians who specialized in classical music. This study investigated the development of MPA across the ages in young musicians focusing on the classical and popular genres.


In a cross-sectional survey, 239 students at German music schools, aged between 7 and 20 yrs, were asked about their perceived MPA and musical background. The data were analyzed according to musical genre and age. Multiple regression analyses were performed to investigate the influences of musical experiences on MPA.


The analyses yielded high levels of MPA for classical musicians between 7 and 16 yrs, which was reduced in older students; for popular musicians, low MPA was seen in the younger (7-11 yrs) and high MPA in the older (16+ yrs) musicians. MPA was influenced by gender and the number of performances in the classical music group and only by gender and age in the popular music group.


The results showed clear different trends for the development of MPA between musical genres that should be taken into account for educational aspects in musical training.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center