OBJECTIVES: Several studies have shown that performance related musculoskeletal disorders present a significant and common health problem for instrument players. This study was conducted to investigate the symptom prevalence rate of performance-related musculoskeletal disorders and risk factors on symphony orchestra players. METHODS: The symptom prevalence rate of musculoskeletal disorders and related factors including demographic factors, occupational factors, psychosocial factors, practice and performance-related behaviors of on 156 symphony orchestra players in Taegu city were surveyed with a self-administered questionnaire. RESULTS: Instrument players have performed for 14. 6 years in average and worked 4. 9 for years in average as a member of symphony orchestra. The subjects consisted of 106 string players, 48 wind players, and 8 percussion players. The symptom prevalence rate of musculoskeletal disorders according to the NIOSH surveillance criteria was 79. 6 % and operational criteria by authors was 45. 9 %. The prevalence rate of viola players was higher than violin players, and the prevalence rate of the bass players was higher than that of the cello players. In univariate analysis, job insecurity, irregular performance, stress from family problems, and performance related psychosomatic strains had a significant association with the prevalence rate of musculoskeletal disorders. In multiple logistic regression, job insecurity, irregular performance, and stress from family problems were significant variables affecting the prevalence rate of musculoskeletal disorders of instrument players. CONCLUSIONS: This study suggest that symphony orchestra players are high risk group of musculoskeletal disorders. Irregular performance schedule and psychosocial stress including job insecurity, and psychosomatic strain were important risk factors of players musculoskeletal disorders. An exercise program such as stretching before and after performance, regular performance schedule and reduction of psychosocial stress might be helpful for prevention of musculoskeletal disorders of instrument players.