Andreas C. Lehmann, John A. Sloboda and Robert H. Woody

in Psychology for Musicians

Published in print March 2007 | ISBN: 9780195146103
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199851164 | DOI:

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This chapter tackles motivation and its crucial role in the development and improvement of musical skills. The manifestations of motivation are treated as behaviors, and its sources are identified and classified as either intrinsic or extrinsic. The chapter also presents the results of research on the topic. First, it is found that music is intrinsically motivating and that the support of parents and mentors are vital in generating and sustaining this motivation. The next point revealed is that a musician's social standing among his peers, coupled with his own self-perceptions of ability and success, help to strengthen his commitment to the art. Lastly, motivation in music is linked to the musician's own reaction towards challenges. Musicians who aim for mastery in their field have been found to exert all necessary efforts in achieving this end result, which allows them to enjoy otherwise repetitive and tedious practice activities.

Keywords: motivation; music; musician; social standing; self-perception

Chapter.  7177 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Music Theory and Analysis

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