London 2012: Many accomplished musicians among Olympians

On Sunday, August 5, the Toronto Star published an article in their front-page section highlighting The Conservatory’s Olympic alumni, and focusing on the performance training parallels between music and sport.

Included in this article were:

  • Interviews with Conservatory alumni who have competed in the Olympics, past and present
  • Quotes from James Anagnoson, Dean, Glenn Gould School, and Jesse Cooney, Centre Coordinator, The Achievement Program
  • Mentions of Conservatory Medals and Exams, The Glenn Gould School, The Achievement Program, and “the finest instrument is the mind”

An excerpt:

“I think it’s helped with the rhythm. The other thing I’ve heard (that is) helpful — I’m in the sculling group — scullers have an oar in each hand. (They say) pianists always make good scullers because of their awareness of their hands and their fingers on both sides,” [Michael Braithwaite] told the Star’s Shawna Richer.

Classically trained pianists, cellists and clarinetists are all part of the Canadian Olympic team. They include hammer throw champion Heather Steacy and fencer Sherraine Schalm.

“The skills are transferable,” says Jesse Cooney, a gymnast and member of the 2010 world champion coed Team Canada Cheerleading squad.

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