Keynote Speaker, Dr. Bronwen Ackermann


Dr. Bronwen Ackermann is a specialist musicians' physiotherapist, musculoskeletal anatomist and musicians' health researcher at the University of Sydney. Her interest in performing arts health grew as a result of working with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra since 1995, going on to work on improving occupational health as well as developing best-practice injury prevention and management strategies with all the major Australian Orchestras, as well as the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. She received a Churchill fellowship in 2002 allowing her to spend time with international colleagues involved in both research and clinical work in the field of music medicine. She completed her PhD in 2003 looking at physiotherapy management of performance-related musculoskeletal injuries in violinists, and joined academia in 2006, where she has lectured in physiotherapy and functional musculoskeletal anatomy. She continues to conduct research into musicians' health focusing on performance-related injury prevention, performance-related injury assessment and management, optimizing performance through enhancing physical and psychological well-being, and understanding the anatomical, physiological and biomechanical mechanisms underpinning musical performance.

She has run several large prestigious national musicians health projects including an ARC linkage grant investigation developing evidence-based guidelines for best management of occupational injuries occurring in musicians ('Sound Practice'), and an ALTC national music health curriculum initiative in collaboration with colleague Associate Professor Suzanne Wijsman from the University of Western Australia ('Sound Performers'). She is a High Performance Consultant at the Australian National Academy of Music, guiding the education and implementation of their innovative and ground-breaking Musicians' Health program. She was the inaugural president of the Australian Society for Performing Arts healthcare and is the Chair of the International Liaison Committee and the Education Committee of the USA based Performing Arts Medicine Association (PAMA). She has presented nationally and internationally to many orchestras, health professionals and music organizations about evidence-based principles of injury prevention and management for musicians and clinically applied anatomy. She is the Director of the research group Sound Practice: Australian Musicians Health in Performance working with associate directors Professor Tim Driscoll, Professor Dianna Kenny and Dr Mark Halaki on testing and implementing evidence-based solutions for musicians' health issues.

Dr. Ackermann will be available for private sessions, focused on optimizing movement in musical playing actions at the conference.