Testimonials

Laura Lucas

Father Sean [Duggan]: I am so grateful that I was able to study with you these past two years. Thank you for your patience, kindness, and understanding. I have grown so much as a pianist and musician. I truly believe God brought me to your studio and allowed me to study Taubman, the adaptation that enabled me to play this recital. I am confident that if it was not for learning the Taubman technique I would not be playing. Thank you for that gift! I look forward to using its insights when teaching students and clients in the future.<...


Dr. Therese Milanovic

My story is a fortunate one.  Upon commencing my undergraduate studies, I was very inspired to improve and to work hard.  With an important exam looming, I increased my practice from two to seven or eight hours a day.  Unaware of the existence of playing-related injury or the severity of the consequences, I played for the exam in pain and was diagnosed later with tendonitis in my right thumb.  Six weeks of no practice seemed like an eternity.  A cortisone injection was presented as the only option, and after the injection I went back...


Charlotte Williams

(From the East Cobber Magazine, Marietta, Georgia)

Starting Over

In 1996, at age 40, pianist/composer Charlotte Williams was faced with two options: she could continue to play piano professionally and endure the ever-increasing pain of tendinitis and carpal tunnel syndrome, or she could set out to find a new career. With over 34 years invested in the study of piano, however, neither option seemed quite right.   “I had reached a real crisis point,” explained Ms. Williams, “because I was literally in pain 24 hours a day.” One evening, during a performance at...


Diego Taccuso

Dear Professor Golandsky:

You don’t know me, but since I bought the complete video series of The Taubman Techniques a few years ago and watched them hundreds of time, I “know you” very well.

You and Dorothy Taubman are very important figures in my life, even if I’ve never met you. Without any doubt you are the best teachers I’ve ever had.

Don’t worry: I’m not going to tell everybody that “I studied” with you (I wish I had)....


Maureen Volk, DMA

I’ve been on the piano faculty at Memorial University of Newfoundland since 1979. In 1990 I hurt my right hand, an injury that caused almost constant pain in my hand, arm, elbow, shoulders and back. The injury occurred away from the piano, but in retrospect I suspect that it was made possible by years of misuse at the piano. Most everyday activities became difficult and painful, including washing dishes, ironing, carrying and lifting, turning a key in a lock, etc. I was unable to play the piano at all for over a year. Even the oom-pah-pah teacher accompaniments in...


Ron Stabinsky

My earliest technical training was in the tradition of the finger independence and stretching exercises that are far too familiar to most pianists. However, I eventually studied with a teacher who encouraged a technique that resulted in less stress to the body. This approach involved much relaxation and was a welcome change from the finger isolation of my earlier playing. For a number of years, I believed that this relaxed approach would prevent future injury and satisfy my needs as a pianist.

Unfortunately, as years passed I became less satisfied with my tone production. My sound often...


Elizabeth Shahane

My mother keeps a picture of me reaching for the piano before I could even walk. Sound was a delight to me. Even when confined to my highchair I would shake crackers to see if they made noise. I remember crawling about the house opening drawers in order to hear the hollow closing. Nothing ever made the same sound twice. I was elated when my parents asked me if I wanted to take music lessons because an instrument meant instant sound—sound I could make myself, whenever I wanted.

I fell in love with the piano....


Linette A. Popoff-Parks

Like so many pianists, I began my love affair with music at an early age, learning quickly and negotiating my way around the keyboard with a rather natural technique. And also like so many pianists, I began to experience difficulties when I moved into the advanced repertoire. The holding/stretching/finger independence exercises required by my college training proved disastrous to my hands, exacerbating the compensatory movements I acquired to handle the advanced literature, resulting in extreme tension and fatigue in my forearms, plus tendonitis in my right thumb and wrist. The symptoms were so extreme that I felt...


Amy L. Aberg McLelland, BM, MM, NCTM

My Personal Experience with the Taubman Approach

The doctor, in his starched white coat, intoned without empathy, “Why do you have to play music anyway? There are plenty of other jobs out there.”

I am a pianist for whom music is the only choice, and that was the lowest point in my pilgrimage from injury back to health. Truthfully, I was never aware how important music was to me until I could no longer play. I had always played — and thought I always would. Even before my parents enrolled me in formal...


Carla Levy, BM, MFA

Every day as I begin my early morning practice, I become aware of motion and sound. I take pleasure in knowing that coordination, fluidity and freedom have replaced tension, fatigue and discomfort.

I cannot remember a time when playing the piano was anything other than an intense struggle. By the time I was ten, I was already so injured that I felt I would never be able to play challenging repertoire. At seventeen I was accepted to the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where, four years later, I limped through my senior recital playing music I loved with...


Paula Gorelkin, M.M.

I was about 57 years old when I started to feel shooting pains in my fingers and hands. I had been a piano teacher for 30 years and had performed, primarily as a chamber music pianist, on a professional series in Atlanta of which I was artistic director. I was fortunate in being able to associate with first chair Atlanta Symphony players and their equivalent. I had come from the school of "play with your foot if you have to" as long as you create the sound you want, which I now know can cause all kinds of injuries. I saw...


Janine Byrne

Hi John:  First of all, I want to say a BIG THANK YOU for taking the time from your Christmas holiday to spend time with my son Brian helping him out with his piano playing. I was very impressed by your insight and ability to identify Brian's issues so readily, and most importantly come up with solutions to fix the physical, technical and musical issues he's developed from years of improper position when playing piano.  I was particularly impressed with your ability to relate these important and detailed points to the level of a 12-year...