Performing arts medicine conference in Toronto

By Brittany Duggan

The Performing Arts Medicine Association (PAMA) and the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music presented “Performance Awareness from Studio to Stage” in Toronto on March 26th. The day-long conference for teachers, performers, students and health care professionals working with performing artists was held in the Conservatory Theatre at the Telus Centre for Performance and Learning and included lectures, panels, live performance demonstrations and participatory workshops. The conference featured international dance medicine specialists, expert teachers and artistic directors, and was co-hosted by Dr. Bonnie Robson, of Pivot Sports Medicine and Orthopedics, and John Chong, president elect of Musicians Clinics of Canada. Lectures covered diagnosis and treatment of common dance injuries, hearing loss in the arts, and the neurobiology of injury and illness. A panel titled ”Working with Artistic Directors to Prevent Injuries in the Studio and on the Stage” was moderated by Roger Hobden, sport physician and board member for Danse-Cité and BJM Danse; the panel was concerned with teaching practices that prevent injury at all stages of training. Demonstrations and hands-on workshops catered to the crowd of predominantly dance and music community members, with tips to prevent injury and ways for teachers to identify the early onset of injuries in students. “Performance Awareness from Studio to Stage” was the inaugural regional meeting for PAMA in Toronto. PAMA is an international member organization of physicians, therapists, trainers, educators, administrators, as well as performers and students interested in improving the well being of performing artists.

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