Katrin Meidell, DMA, is Assistant Professor of Viola at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana, where she teachers undergraduate and graduate students, and coaches the award-winning BSU Viola Choir. In addition to regular solo recitals, she performs with the Hibiki Trio (flute, viola, and harp), in residence at BSU, and Trio Harmonia (flute, viola, and piano). In the orchestral realm, she is Principal Viola with the Muncie and the Anderson Symphony Orchestras, and also performs with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and the Fort Wayne Philharmonic. She enjoys playing new music and often commissions and performs new works.
As a scholar, Katrin is interested in Music and Medicine, and serves as Chair of the American String Teachers Association Health and Wellness Taskforce. Her interest in Music and Medicine began soon after finishing her undergraduate degrees (Boston University, BA in Psychology and BM in Violin and Viola Performance, 2003), when she experienced an injury that was debilitating to her performing career. With the guidance of her viola teacher, doctors, and therapists within several disciplines, she eventually returned to a state of playing health. Since that time, she has been focused on the most holistic approach to viola playing possible, and has a successful record of helping students significantly reduce tension and often completely eliminate playing-related pain. Much of this is due to her specialty in the Karen Tuttle Coordination method of viola playing and pedagogy, which encourages violists to play in the most natural and physically-relaxed way possible. Though the doctors and therapists helped a lot, Katrin is sure she would not currently be a professional musician were it not for Carol Rodland, her teacher during the Master of Music degree earned at the New England Conservatory of Music (2005), who helped her relearn how to correctly use her body when playing viola.
Once she finished her MM, Katrin left Boston and moved to Denton, Texas, where she earned her Doctorate of Musical Arts degree in 2011 at the University of North Texas, with a primary area in Viola Performance, and a secondary area in Music and Medicine. Her time at UNT was greatly influenced by Dr. Kris Chesky, who encouraged Katrin to research the relationships between performance anxiety and pain and also why string players are prone to injury. Katrin’s dissertation, Epidemiological Evaluation of Pain in String Players, yielded fascinating results that she has presented at regional, national, and international conferences. It was the first large-scale study (over 100 participants) of string players to take anthropometric measurements and to examine results based on the instrument type instead of grouping all string players into the same category.
Meidell, Katrin Liza Epidemiological evaluation of pain among string instrumentalists. University of North Texas, ProQuest Dissertations Publishing, 2011. 3486493.