Advanced Level Pianists Sought For LIVELab Research Study

Piano Performance Research Study

What this study is about:
Examining neurological and physiological aspects of high-level music performance.

Who can participate?
Advanced-level pianists (Grade 9 RCM+) who perform a minimum of 3 times a year.

What is involved?
Participants will perform music while fitted with non-invasive physiological measurement devices (e.g., EEG cap, Heart Rate Monitor) on a stage.

Participation will involve 2 sessions on two different days.

Potential benefits and risks?
To better understand the psychological and physiological processes underlying high-level musical performance. You will receive compensation for your time. There are no known risks to participating in this study.

For more information about, or to participate in this study, please contact:

Sarah Lade, PhD Candidate

About the LIVELab

This pianist is currently performing while physiological measurements of muscle tension and heart rate are taken.
These measurements are displayed on-screen for the purposes of easy visualization only (in the context of the photograph). These measures are not displayed on-screen during the performance session itself.

This study has been reviewed by and received ethics clearance through the McMaster Research Ethics Board.
Principal Investigator: Dr. Laurel Trainor Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Behaviour, McMaster University

The LIVELab at McMaster University


Sarah Lade is a PhD candidate in McMaster University’s Clinician-Researcher Trainee program. Her dissertation research focus considers the underlying causes of severe Music Performance Anxiety in elite musicians. Her work explores this issue from four different perspectives (cognitive, behavioural, physiological, and neurological). Her primary area of clinical focus is in neuropsychological assessment and in providing intervention for individuals with both acquired and naturally-developed brain disorders.


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