Evaluations from NYU Steinhardt Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions:

Masters Candidates

Marcia allowed learning through exploration, movement, mental awareness and breathing. She is an incredible coach and she really helped me to explore my fears, examine them and then approach them from a grounded standpoint. This is possibly the best course I have taken while at NYU because for me personally, Marcia helped me to face my performance anxiety and taught me how to approach these situations and feelings not only in performance but in life as well.

She created an incredibly creative and safe environment. I’m leaving with a deeper understanding of myself, a more developed sense of my surroundings and my presence in those surroundings, and a more substantial level of confidence in my work and how I move through life.


I cannot begin to describe the wonderful discoveries I made this semester under the guidance of Marcia Lesser. After our seven weeks together, I find myself much more aware of my body and the space I have in the world. I feel taller and much more open to communication in my work. The work from these coachings seems to have continued to grow, even after the seven weeks. I have had many comments in the last semester regarding the way I perform and work to be incredibly different than it was before; I owe a lot to Marcia!

I feel that this instructor really took the care to get to know me personally. She is kind and welcoming and will take extra time to contact me with thoughts about our work. I feel very comfortable with her and greatly look forward to meeting with her. She has helped to embrace my unique individuality and talents. I owe a lot to who I am right now to our work together this semester.

“Before working with you I never really gave any thought to how my body was responding to my instrument or visa versa. I never realized that how I held my posture or the way I distributed weight on my feet actually affected the sound that came out of my instrument. Before I began my sessions with you, practicing was all about getting each note right, making things technically perfect. The efficientcy of my playing wasn’t ever a main concern….I started to realize that maybe the physical aspect of my playing is directly connected to my playing. By working on unlocking my knees, I was able to stand up so that I was more balanced. This way, the top portion of my body was more connected to my legs and feet. By becoming more balanced and grounded on my two feet, I was much more secure as I was playing. My sound was becoming more crisp, clear, with more of a core….now when I’m not happy with my sound, I check to make sure my feet and legs are grounded. Before I started work with you, I would have probably played through any kind of pain in my neck, shoulders or back. Now, whenever I feel some kind of tension or discomfort, I stop, take time to analyze what I’m doing and try to find the source of tension.”

M.L.K, 18 years old The Juilliard School

“I have worked with Ms. Lesser for several years and I have found her work extremely informative, enlightening and life changing. Her work with my students has been extremely helpful to them with their body awareness, enabling them to absorb the concepts learned in lessons with greater ease and understanding. It is with this combined knowledge that I feel students can begin to find their voices and develop their expressions from a deeper place.”

Catherine Cho The Juilliard School Violin Facullty

“I am honored to write this letter on behalf of Ms. Marcia Lesser, about her remarkable achievements in helping musicians to pain free playing technique and effective use of their bodies. I came to know her when my son’s violin teacher….recommended he work with Marcia on his body and his violin playing. I was extremely impressed at the first meeting when she did some initial assessments of my son’s body through some simple movements. She was able to tell which muscle was tight and which was more relaxed immediately. Marcia took this whole body awareness technique to work with her client-meaning she is not just correcting one posture or one part of the body at a time but slowly changing habit through awareness of the body as a whole…it works miracles when applied to musicians. My son is now standing and walking much more naturally than before and at the same time all the pain he experienced in his arms and neck are now gone. He looks taller and more open in the chest, and at the same time plays the violin with much more ease and confidence.”

M. Ting, PH.D President Juilliard Pre-College Chinese Parent's Association

“Since we’ve been working together I’ve felt much more conscious of what my body is doing while I’m playing. I look at musical technique through a different perspective now….in small thing, like when I put up my violin, I can feel where the motion is originating. I’ve overall felt much more comfortable in my body and am conscious of how my body is performing everyday tasks. When I bend over to pick something up, I think of how my back is arching and when I sit, typing on my computer, I think about straitening my back and opening my chest. My chest feels more open and when I breathe, my body feels much more relaxed.”

Conrad Tao, 14 years old Juilliard Pre-College Division