Book Chapter

Learning to perform: From 'gifts' and 'talents' to skills and creative engagement

J Davidson, G McPherson

Musicians in the Making Pathways to Creative Performance | Oxford University Press | Published : 2017


To perform any skilled activity to expert level requires committed and intensely motivated learning. This chapter explores how musical development, particularly as it applies to learning an instrument, depends crucially on inventive and productive opportunities that coalesce in configurations unique to each learner. It reveals how an obsession with gifts and talents on the parts of researchers, teachers, parents and musicians alike has led to confusion over the nature and acquisition of the skills required for high-level music performance. It traces key theories on family scripts and self-determination to illustrate the ways in which psychological constructs shape belief and thus motivate le..

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