January 21, 2022: “Why is experiencing music together necessary for maintaining emotional health?”

Presenter: Dr. Lois Svard
January 21, 2022, noon Eastern Time


All of us, whether musicians or audience members, suffered from the lack of live music during the corona virus pandemic. It’s not just that the sound was not as good listening to streamed concerts, we are hardwired to experience music together, whether making it or listening to it.  A kind of proto-musical language was the only form of communication for our Stone Age ancestors, and this has had a profound effect on the structure and function of the human brain. Consider just two examples of many: the brain waves of two musicians who don’t know each other sync before they even begin to play. Children learn to sync to a beat at a much younger age when they are playing with an adult – making music together.  We are missing a part of our humanity if we are not able to experience music together and that has an effect on our emotional well-being. This webinar will explain why that is the case. 

Dr. Lois Svard, pianist, has received critical acclaim for her performances and recordings of contemporary American piano music.   She is also well-known for her work in applying current neuroscience research to the study and performance of music.   She has presented her work at multiple national and international music conferences and has also taught a university course that explores the applications of current neuroscience research for making music.  She writes The Musician’s Brain, a blog that has introduced readers in more than 120 countries to some of the latest research in neuroscience and music, and her book, The Musical Brain: what students, teachers, and performers need to know, will be published by Oxford next year.  Svard is Professor of Music Emerita and former chair of the Music Department at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, PA.

E mail: [email protected]