Why do some people find the Taubman Approach controversial?
July 1, 2012
Taubman was one of the first to acknowledge playing-related injuries in the 1950s, and to correlate specific problems with particular incoordinate movements at the instrument. For some, her claims posed a major threat to the piano establishment. As one Taubman student summarised, “If she’s right, a lot of traditional training is wrong” (cited in Dyer, 1995, p. B21).
Taubman called for unchallenged traditions of piano pedagogy to be “weighed, codified, and tested against our contemporary knowledge of the basic principles governing body movement and the mechanical laws governing the piano” (cited in Schneider, 1983, p. 21). However, this was greeted with “hostility” (Taubman, cited in Del Pico-Taylor & Tammam, 2005, p. 47). At that time, there was little interest in musicians’ problems; “Teachers denied any such thing existed” (Taubman, cited in n.a., 1986, p. 40). Apart from a handful of specialists, the medical profession has also been largely reluctant to embrace her work. One of the exceptions is Dr. Frank Wilson, a neurologist, who asserted that “She has challenged the medical establishment with remarkable results” (cited in n.a., 1986, p. 40). Other testimonials from medical professionals can be found at http://www.golandskyinstitute.org/about/doctors
Del Pico-Taylor, M., & Tammam, S. (2005). The wisdom of Dorothy Taubman. Clavier, 44(10), 19, 46-47.
Dyer, R. (1995, August 13). Dorothy Taubman teaches piano without pain. Boston Globe, p. 21
n.a. (1986, Sunday, July 27). Piano school tones up the hands on the keys. New York Times, p. 40.
Schneider, A. (1983). Dorothy Taubman: There is an answer. Clavier, 22(7), 19-21.