Presenters – Continuous Learning
Continuous Learning (CL) sessions are given by very experienced Alexander Technique teachers. Choose two different classes running over two days each.
Loved and cherished Continuous Learning sessions are back, of course!
Check out our presenters' bios and class descriptions to find your favourites. Information about the ratio of practical/doing/active time to lecture style time is also included to allow you to understand not only what you are going to learn, but also how.
Continuous Learning sessions are the only classes that require pre-booking. We plan to begin this 4-6 weeks prior to the Congress. We will let you know when we have an exact date and inform you via website and newsletter. Please check back.
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Continuous Learning List
Presenter Profiles Count:
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United KingdomUnited Kingdom Anthony Kingsley has been teaching and training for 35 years. He is also a trained psychotherapist. He has been training Alexander Technique Teachers in London since 1990 and assisted in the training of over 100 teachers who are now working in the UK and throughout the world. Anthony’s school, the Alexander Teacher Training School, based in Golders Green, offers ongoing personal development as well as professional training in the Alexander Technique.
Anthony has evolved a powerful mind-body approach to the Alexander Technique. He is particularly passionate about what medics refer to as \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\”somatisation\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\”, which is when the body reveals and reflects our trauma and pain. Anthony sees the potential of the Alexander Technique not just for posture, aches and pains, but also and crucially for emotional healing.
He gives workshops and seminars on the Technique to the general public in the United Kingdom and abroad. He also consults to industry and the medical profession on stress-management, personal effectiveness and trauma healing. He offers bespoke Alexander Technique sessions in at his Studio in London and on-line.
Anthony was very honoured to have written the new introduction to the recently republished, 2019, Alexander classic: \\\”Use of the Self\\\”.
IsraelIsrael Avi Granit trained with Patrick McDonald, graduating in 1983, and teaches full-time in Haifa and Tel Aviv, Israel. He was the senior teacher trainer in Rica Cohen’s AT school for many years before opening his own training course in Tel Aviv in 2006.
Avi is a popular presenter at International Congresses, and works regularly abroad in the UK, Austria and Korea. He continues to hone his skills by applying the AT to his daily life activities including running, hiking, skiing, boxing and carpentry.
NY, USAUSA Caren Bayer received her certification from Patrick MacDonald in London in 1984. Since then, she has maintained a private practice in New York City as well as around the world. Caren opened Manhattan Center for the Alexander Technique, certifying teachers from 2001-2014. As a former dancer and longtime student of the martial arts, Caren brings 36 years of movement research to her teaching.
WA, USAUSA Cathy Madden is a Teaching Professor for the University of Washington School of Drama, Author of Teaching the Alexander Technique: Acting Pathways to Integrative Practice (Singing Dragon, 2018) and Integrative Alexander Technique Practice for Performing Artists: Onstage Synergy (Intellect 2014), and Director of the Integrative Alexander Technique Studio of Seattle. She is a founding member of Alexander Technique International, an ATI Sponsoring Teacher, has served and has served as its chair. Her original exploration of this work began with Marjorie Barstow and she is a regular visiting teacher at training schools and performance centers around the world. Her specialty is integrative practice of this work, particularly in relationship to the performing arts and professional communication, is part of the Integrative Alexander Technique Circle, and she is also a theatre director, clown, doula and Creative Collaborator with Lucia Neare Theatrical Wonders
IsraelIsrael Born in Jerusalem 1948. Graduated AT teacher 1978. Since 1989 I trained AT\\\’s teachers in Germany and in Israel. Studied Theater and literature. Exercised much Zen meditation and Qigong. I published some books of poetry in Hebrew. Now I am going to retired from my work in Germany and live in Tel Aviv.
AustraliaAustralia David Moore is the director of the School for F.M. Alexander Studies in Melbourne which he established in 1998. He is the author of “Smart Yoga: Apply the Alexander Technique to enhance your practice, prevent injury and increase body awareness.”
Besides training teachers in the technique and running a private practice in Melbourne, he has been running regular workshops and trainings in Europe, the UK, China and Taiwan, both for Alexander and yoga teachers.
Mate-Ehuda, IsraelIsrael A teacher of the Alexander Technique, developed a unique method for working with children, youth and parents in accordance with the principles of the Alexander Technique
Education: Graduated in 1988 from the Jerusalem School for the Alexander Technique, under the direction of Schmuel Nelken
1998-2002: Established and directed the non-profit organization \”Mishal\”, founded in April 1998 by the parents of children who had been helped by the Alexander Technique.
2001-2006: Member of the professional team at a residential institution for teenagers at risk
Teacher of the Alexander Technique at various institutions: “Yedida”, for adults suffering from light or medium retardation; “HaTene”, a Jerusalem school for special education; Ilan Children’s Hospital; ‘HaSatat”, a teacher of the Alexander Technique at “Kessem” School Jerusalem municipal nursery school.
Teacher of the Alexander Technique at “Kessem” School.
2004-2006: Chairman of the Israeli Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique (ISTAT)
2008: Chairman of the professional organization for complimentary medicine
Director of the training course for teachers of the Alexander Technique in Jerusalem.
Associate Director of the training course for teachers of the Alexander Technique in Tel-Aviv;
maintains clinics for the Alexander Technique in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv for adults and children.
Personal: Born 1963, married with 3 children
Cumbria, United KingdomUnited Kingdom Jamie McDowell is co-Head of Training at Cumbria Alexander Training. He is Editor of Statnews and co-Editor of The Alexander Journal, published by STAT. He originally studied Physics and Psychology and had a short career in teaching before training as an Alexander Teacher at ATA, London in 1980.
Isle of Man, United KingdomUnited Kingdom Trained in London with the Carringtons in the mid 1970s and remained for eleven years as one of their full-time assistants. Subsequently directed AT teacher training courses in Melbourne, Australia, Brighton, England, and New York, USA, training in total more than one hundred teachers. Now travels to teach in many different countries: see johnnichollsat.com for calendar, articles, videos, podcasts, and blog posts (which are actually mini essays on aspects of the Technique).
Québec, CanadaCanada Trained by Macdonald and qualified in 1984. Author of the Art of Running and the Art of Working Out. Founder of The Art of Running applying AT to running. Developed an A of R teacher certification course in 2016. Current provincial holder of 4 age group indoor track records at 400m. 800m, 1500m and 3k.
Michael Frederick and Carol Prentice
Ojai & California, USAUSA — Michael D. Frederick —
Michael D. Frederick is an internationally recognized teacher in the field of psycho-physical re-education. He trained as an Alexander Teacher in England with Walter & Dilys Carrington and in America with Marjorie Barstow (all master teachers trained by F.M. Alexander in the 1930s).
He studied in the U.S. and Israel as a Feldenkrais Practitioner with Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais and has extensive training in the Yoga tradition of T.K.V. Desikachar from Madras, India. Michael also trained as an actor at The Bristol Old Vic Theatre School, Bristol, England.
As founding director of the first three International Congresses on the Alexander Technique, he has organized and taught over 250 workshops in the U.S. and Europe since 1978.
Michael worked for two years at the Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute and taught for over a decade in The Old Globe Theatre’s MFA Acting Program at the University of San Diego.
From 1994 to 2000 Michael organized Alexander Technique Master Classes with Marjory Barlow (F.M. Alexander’s niece) and Elisabeth Walker in San Francisco, Basel and Paris.
He has conducted presentation skills seminars for upper-level corporate management in such companies as Du Pont Corporation, Merck Pharmaceuticals, and AMOCO.
He is former Chairman of the American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT) and is now Co-Director and on the Board of Directors of the Alexander Training Institute, LA. Currently, Michael teaches in Los Angeles, Ojai, and Santa Barbara, California.
Michael attended the International Acadamy of Continuous Education near Oxford, England from 1972-1974 under the direction of J.G. Bennett. He studied in the mid-1970s with Suleyman Hayati Dede, Sheikh Muzaffer Özak, Hasan Shushud in Turkey and with Sheikh Muhammad Nazim in London. From 1976 to 1978 he taught theatre at the Brockwood Park School in Hampshire, England founded by educator philosopher, Jiddu Krishnamurti. From 1986 to 1992, Michael was the Co-Director of the David Bohm Dialogues series that took place annually in Ojai, California.
Michael was voted best Alexander Teacher in Los Angeles Magazine’s “Best of LA.”
— Carol P. Prentice —
Carol P. Prentice is a senior teacher of the Alexander Technique specializing in somatic education and health for 30 years. Carol trained with master teachers Frank Ottiwell and Rome Robert Earle at the Alexander Training Institute in San Francisco. She graduated in 1986. Since graduating, Carol has furthered her training with first generation Alexander Teachers here in the U.S. and in Europe.
Carol graduated from the California College of Ayurveda as a Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist (CAS) and a Pancha Karma Specialist (PKS), She was the Internship Director from 2008 to 2017. Carol is also a certified 500-RYT Yoga Teacher in the tradition of Sri T. Krishnamacharya from the Healing Yoga Foundation in San Francisco.
She has created Hands-On Retreats, a 5-day retreat where she combines her training of Alexander, Ayurveda, and Yoga empowering people to take responsibility for their own health and healing.
Carol currently lives in Ojai, CA where she has a private practice. She is an AmSTAT certified teacher and was the a Co-Director of the 11th International AT Congress in Chicago.
ItalyItaly Paolo Frigoli trained as an Alexander Technique teacher from 1989 to 1992. In subsequent years he spent long periods of professional development in UK at the Brighton Alexander Training Centre directed by John and Carolyn Nicholls, while he could also take regular lessons from Walter Carrington and Peggy Williams. Since then he has kept working regularly with John Nicholls who has become his mentor. Paolo has taught the Technique for 29 years individually and in groups, both in his private studio and in public institutions, and has been invited to teach in various Alexander schools. In 2008 he was on the Continuos Learning faculty at the International Congress in Lugano. In 2015 he started his own STAT approved teacher training course in Italy. Paolo qualified as a physiotherapist in 1989, then trained in the Mézierès method with Dr. Laura Bertelé and in the Cranio-Sacral Therapy of Dr. John Upledger, which is still part of his daily practice.
United KingdomUnited Kingdom Peter Nobes has been teaching the Alexander Technique since 1993. He is based in central London and has taught the Alexander work in thirteen countries on three continents.
Peter has been training teachers since 2013. He delivered the Keynote Speech at the ATI conference in 2016.
His book ‘Mindfulness in 3D – the Alexander Technique for the 21st Century’ was published in 2018. He is currently writing another book about how to make sense of FM\\\’s writings, provisionally titled \\\’Illusion or Reality – Are We Teaching What FM Was Teaching?\\\’
When he isn’t teaching, Peter builds wooden boats and then rows, paddles and sails them.
SwitzerlandSwitzerland Priska Gauger-Schelbert attended the Performance School in Seattle in 1991. From 1992-1995 she was trained by Jaqueline Webster in Zurich. Since 1995 she has her own Alexander Technique studio in central Switzerland.
Between 2001 and 2003 she developed the pioneering adaptable concept balance-time® based on the Alexander Technique, at the world-famous company Victorinox AG. Since then, this concept has successfully been introduced in numerous institutions and companies throughout Switzerland. Priska Gauger-Schelbert has developed a competent team around balance-time®.
It is central for Priska, mother of four, that everyone is responsible for his or her own health. Alexander Technique is a method which sees this personal responsibility not as a duty, a task or a job, but as an innate potential for lightness, freedom, naturalness and awareness in dealing with oneself, daily work and activitites. To support unfolding this potential in oneself and one’s clients has always been the passionate motivation for her work.
Richard Brennan and Annedore Kleist
Germany, IrelandIreland — Richard Brennan —
Richard Brennan has studied the Alexander Technique since 1983 and has teaching individual and group sessions since 1989 having undergone a three-year teacher training course approved by STAT (UK); he travels internationally giving talks and courses on the Technique. He has taught the Technique at many educational centres including Galway University, Limerick University, DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama (Dublin), Dartington College of Arts (Devon), and Middlesex University (London). Temple University (USA). He regularly teaches on holiday courses in Spain, Germany, Greece, Croatia and Slovenia. He was a director of the 2015 Alexander Congress in Limerick as well as the 2013 and 2017 Alexander Teacher’s Conventions in Ireland.
He has written eight books on the Alexander Technique, which are translated into 22 languages and are on sale world-wide – the titles including The Alexander Technique Workbook, Change your Posture – Change your Life and How to Breathe
Richard has been the director of the only Alexander Teacher Training College in Ireland for the last 22 years, Ireland which is STAT and ISATT approved and is also a past president and the co-founder of the Irish Society of Alexander Technique Teachers. (ISATT). He strongly believes that the technique is in essence very simple and easy to understand, but often it is made far too complicated and uses this believe as the basis of all his workshops.
— Annedore Kleist —
Annedore Kleist is a professional actor and experienced teacher of the Alexander Technique. She studied acting at the School of Music and Theatre Hamburg and since her diploma in 1991 she has played in many theatres including Theater Basel, Theater Wuppertal, Théâtre de Vidy Lausanne, Ruhrfestspiele Recklinghausen and Wiener Festwochen. Since 2002 she has travelled to festivals all over Europe with the Berlin based theatre company Nico and the Navigators. Annedore also plays in Film and Television.
In 2004 she finished her training at the School for Alexander Technique in Berlin with Dan Armon and ever since then she has specialized on working with actors and performers. She is also very experienced in breath and voice work. In 2018 she became a regular guest teacher at the Alexander Technique Teaching Training program in Galway, Ireland and now she is the permanent assistant of the course.
CA, USAUSA Robert Britton had his first lessons in the Alexander Technique with Frank Ottiwell in 1974.
He began training to be an Alexander Technique Teacher with Frank Ottiwell and Giora Pinkas in 1975 at the American Center for the Alexander Technique – San Francisco, and graduated in 1978. In addition to his private practice in San Francisco, he has been a professor of the Alexander Technique at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music since 1984.
He has helped train Alexander Technique Teachers since 1989. He regularly teaches at Alexander Technique teacher training schools in Berlin and Hamburg.
He served as chairman of the American Society for the Alexander Technique from 1997 to 1999, and he also was a long-time faculty member of the Bay Area Summer Opera Training Institute. Bob was one of the directors of the 2011 9th International Congress of the Alexander Technique in Lugano Switzerland, and continues to serve on the Board of the Alexander Technique Congress Association.
He was awarded the George S. Sarlo award for Excellence in Teaching in Colleges and Universities in Northern California in 2012, and served as the Department Chairman of “The Complete Musician” Department at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
Robin John Simmons
Wallis, SwitzerlandSwitzerland I trained with the Carringtons (1969-71). Since then I have been continuously giving individual lessons. Simultaneously I was privately studying T’ai Chi. In 1982 I began training AT teachers. Since I learnt the Dart Procedures from Walter Carrington when training with him, I have been continuously working with them and incorporate aspects of what Dart discovered in almost every Alexander lesson I give. I have also written a complete set of summaries of Alexander’s four books (The Gold Dust in the Writings of F.M. Alexander) which has been well received. In 2018, Mouritz published my book The Evolution of Movement which not only shows how to practice the Dart Procedures but also how the Procedures are grounded in the Alexander Technique.
New Mexico, USAUSA Robyn has been studying Alexander’s Work since 1975, being first introduced to it as a young professional performing artist. She is the Founding Director of the Contemporary Alexander School, offering self-paced, non-residential teacher training programs in Santa Fe, NM, Portland, OR, & NYC, and in satellite cities throughout North America; as well as Co-Director of the Alexander Alliance International, offering workshops, teacher training, and post-graduate studies throughout Europe and Asia. Robyn is also the Creator of Living in a BodyTM, a Professional Body Mapping Certification Course translated into 6 languages and taught worldwide.
Robyn’s primary studies were with Marjorie Barstow, Bruce Fertman, and the Alexander Alliance, and she now continues Marj’s lineage in her own training programs. In addition, Robyn has also had the pleasure of being mentored by numerous first and second generation teachers over the past 45 years, and enjoys exploring ways to bridge all styles.
At this point in her teaching career, Robyn’s main interests include training Alexander Teachers in Group Teaching/Crafting of Alexander Games; teaching in real life Situations and Activities; incorporating Body Mapping (LIABTM), Bridging Classical and Contemporary styles of the Work; and helping bring more awareness to Equity and Diversity issues within our profession.
Robyn lives in New Mexico & New York City, USA, shares her life with her wife of 30+ years, 2 adult sons, and 4 cats, and loves to tap dance.
SC, USAUSA Sarah Barker has a passion for teaching people how to live in a conscious body, how to embody their imagination, and how develop physical intelligence. She focuses on giving her students independence and personal success by helping them discover their own inner abilities and the power to change their quality of moving and living.
She was introduced to the Alexander Technique and the Human Potential Movement during her graduate study of acting at the Southern Methodist University. From the moment she began working with Marjorie Barstow she knew she had a thread that would stitch all of her studies together into a unified approach. The idea that one could use conscious awareness and intention to change one’s whole experience of life and art was revolutionary. She dedicated her studies in the art of acting to the psycho-physical realm. Over the 48 years since that first discovery Sarah has studied more than forty somatic systems for unlocking the freedom and ability that comes with a mind/body unity. She became a Theatre Movement Specialist helping to establish the Association of Theatre Movement Educators. She is also an actress and an acting teacher. She has directed two graduate programs for actors and has developed a body of work for physical approaches to acting and other performing arts. She is now professor Emerita at the University of South Carolina. Sarah continues to teach regularly as an invited guest for Alexander Technique teacher training schools around the world.
She has been teaching the Alexander Technique since 1974 with a focus on providing tools that help people learn the technique when there is no teacher available and then for practice as they work closely with teachers to develop the mind/body connection. More recently she has investigated the scientific understanding of touch and its implications for teaching and learning. She has delivered hundreds of workshops, demonstrations and panels throughout the United States and in Japan, Germany, the UK, Canada, Portugal, and Switzerland.
Sarah writes regularly for theatre movement and Alexander Technique publications. Most recently she launched Allez-Up!, her wellness app for smart phones. In the last few years she has authored chapters in two internationally published books: in Galvanizing Performance (with Jessica Knightly) a book of essays on new developments in applications of Alexander Technique in performance and in Physical Dramaturgy (with Routledge Press) a book of essays on physical approaches to theatre performance. Her book, The Alexander Technique, has been distributed worldwide for forty years and has been translated into French, Japanese, Portuguese, Italian and German. Moving with Ease, her innovative DVD for learning the Alexander Technique, is available in English (through easyalexander.com) and in Japanese (through Being Net Press).
FinlandFinland Soile Lahdenperä has Doctorate in Dance (2014) from the Theatre Academy in Helsinki, Finland. She is University Lecturer in Dance program at Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki since 2013. Soile is also assistant teacher at the Alexander Technique Institute of Estonia and moderator in FINSTAT.
Soile did her AT teacher training with John and Carolyn Nicholls from 1992 to 1995 in Brighton, UK. She has been teaching the Technique from then on in the Sibelius Academy and in the Theatre Academy amongst other institutions, as well as having a private practice. She is deeply involved in the Finnish dance scene and received five-year government dance grant from 2010 to 2014.
United KingdomUnited Kingdom As a child, Steven’s love of being in the water led him naturally to join his local swimming club where he took up competitive swimming. At the age of seventeen, he quit – burnt out from the long hours of hard training and suffering from a severely sprained neck and upper back. At this point in his life, he vowed never to return to swimming.
While at University he was introduced to the Alexander Technique™as a means of relieving his pain and became enthused by the ideas of F.M Alexander. In 1990 he started the three-year Alexander Technique™ teacher-training course in Israel.
During this time he began to re-explore his relationship with the water and by applying principles of the Alexander Technique™ in that element rediscovered his passion for swimming. He developed a new approach to teaching swimming – the Shaw Method.
Using his unique approach he has over the years helped thousands of people to find freedom and ease in the water. Steven enjoys working with swimmers and non-swimmers of all levels ranging from those who are fearful of putting their faces in the water to competitive swimmers looking for a healthier approach. He teaches groups and individuals throughout the UK and has introduced the Shaw Method to Japan, Australia
“Steven Shaw is the horse whisperer of swimming. Just as riding does not to be about breaking the horse, swimming does not have to be about fighting the water. Steven Shaw teaches you how to join with the water.\\\\\\\”
Steven is the Course Director of the Middlesex University accredited Diploma course in the Shaw Method and has trained more than 100 teachers. He is the co-author with a former pupil Armand D’Angour of the 1997 ‘Art of Swimming in a new direction with the Alexander Technique™ and has produced four DVDs. His second book on learning to swim with the Shaw Method, ’Master the Art of Swimming’ was published in 2006.
NY, USAUSA Ted Dimon, Ed.D., is Director of The Dimon Institute, where he is developing Sensorimotor Awareness (SMA), a new program in kinesthetic education and the mindful study of the self in action. An internationally renowned teacher and lecturer in the study of mind and body, he received both his masters and doctoral degrees in education from Harvard University. Ted has written ten books, including Anatomy in Action; Anatomy of the Moving Body; The Body in Motion; Anatomy of the Voice; Your Body, Your Voice; The Elements of Skill; The Undivided Self; A New Model of Man’s Conscious Development; and Neurodynamics: The Art of Mindfulness in Action.
The Constructive Teaching Centre
United KingdomUnited Kingdom Alan Philps, Director of Training
Alan trained with Walter and Dilys Carrington at The Constructive teaching Centre (CTC), Holland Park, London. Upon graduation Alan was invited to join the training course staff at CTC where he has taught ever since. Alan became co-director of CTC in 2015 and assumed the role of Head of Training in 2021.
As a voice teacher, Alan has taught and coached presentation skills in the executive world. Prior to coming to London Alan enjoyed a stage and television career as an actor and singer.
Alan supported Walter and Dilys Carrington as a teacher at the international congresses in Englebierg (1991), Jerusalem (1996) and Oxford (2004). He also taught at Lugano (2007 & 2011) Limerick (2015) and Chicago (2018). He is delighted to be leading the CTC team at the congress in Berlin.
Duncan Knowles, Assistant Director of Training
Duncan trained under Walter and Dilys Carrington, graduating from the Constructive Teaching Centre (CTC) in 2001. In addition to his role as Assistant Director at CTC, Duncan has taught on Alexander Teacher Training Course in Madrid and NYC.
Duncan is an experienced voice teacher and coach, having trained extensively with Michael McCallion, author of ‘The Voice Book’ (a seminal text on voice and the Alexander Technique).
As an actor, Duncan has performed in theatre, radio and on television and taught the Alexander Technique and Voice at a leading theatre training school in London for fifteen years from 2001.
Alice Olsher moved from California , where she grew up studying acting and singing . In 1971 she moved to London where she attended the Drama Studio and met the Technique and her first teacher Mary Holland. After working in the theatre she trained at The constructive teaching Centre with Walter and Dilys Carrington. After the training Alice stayed to teach with the Carrington’s , Ruth Murray , Alan Philps and many other teachers.
In 2005 Alice returned to California and became a teacher trainer there still visiting CTC when she could. Alice is now teaching post graduate classes online and is pleased to join the CTC team once again to contribute in the CL in Berlin. It was Ruth’s plan to be there sadly she will not except of course in spirit.
I trained at the Constructive Teaching Centre, graduating in 1999. I have been involved in training teachers from 2008 and I opened my own training course, Centro de Enseñanza Constructiva, in 2016. Within the Alexander world I love meeting new pupils and finding the way to help them to help themselves. In 2017 I published Man´s Supreme Inheritance translation into Spanish. I love hiking, cycling, dancing and being in nature. I am a keen reader and love going to new places and eating well.
After a career in Events Management and years of chronic back pain, Claire trained to become an Alexander Technique teacher at CityATS with Brita Forstrom. After graduation Claire became the Administrator for The Constructive Teaching Centre and the Walter Carrington Educational Trust. Claire has completed four terms of postgraduate training at CTC with Alan Philps and is now teaching on the training course one day a week.
Massachusetts, USAUSA For the past 47 years Tommy has taught and applied the Alexander principles and concepts and has guided thousands towards a life well lived more to their satisfaction. This list includes Alexander teachers and trainees, professional and Olympic athletes, dressage riders, scientists, physicians, corporate and university professionals, musicians, dancers, actors, children, trauma victims, the sexually abused, and those with life threatening disease and the disabled to a more fulfilling and meaningfully satisfying life. He currently has an active in-person and online teaching practice and taught on 30 teacher training courses in the USA, Europe, the UK, Netherlands ,and Asia. He has given well over 1000 workshops internationally for Alexander teachers, teacher trainees and the general public in 16 countries including Ireland, France, Israel. Germany, Austria, Italy, Holland, Hungary, Spain, England, the USA, Japan, Korea, Switzerland, Canada, and served as special assistant to the 1976 Olympic USA Heavyweight Rowing Crew. Tommy served on the faculty at Harvard University for 12 years where he taught the Technique to graduate students enrolled in the Institute for Advanced Theater Training, Harvard University/Moscow Art Theater and the American Repertory Theater. He is founder and Director of the Alexander Technique Center at Cambridge, where he has been training Alexander teachers since 1983. The Center was awarded The Best of Cambridge in Alternative and Holistic Health, by the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts.
A former Assistant Professor of Drama and Managing Director of Tufts Arena Theater at Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, Tommy has acted and directed over 200 theater productions, working, acting or directing with such notable artists as Tennessee Williams in a revival of Eccentricities of a Nightingale (1977), and Michael Douglas, actor/producer and two time Academy Award Oscar winner.
Tommy is co-founder, charter member, and was inaugural Chair of Alexander Technique International (ATI). His contributions to ATI earned him the ATI Lifetime Membership Award. He is also an Honorary Member of ATI France (ATIF), the Irish Society of Alexander Technique Teachers (ISATT), a teaching member of the Japan Alexander Technique Association (JATA), and is Associate Director of Body Chance’s Japanese Alexander Teacher Education Program in Tokyo and Osaka.
Along with Richard A. Brown and Helen Rumsey Jones, wife of Frank Pierce Jones, Tommy co-founded the Alexander Technique Association of New England (ATA) in 1982 and the Frank Pierce Jones Archives and the F. Matthias Alexander Archives, initially housed in the Wessell Library at Tufts University. He was ATA’s director for six years. He is author of Touching Presence (with Rachel Prabhakar) and co-author of Scientific and Humanistic Contributions of Frank Pierce Jones. He has contributed numerous papers on the Alexander Technique, Tai Chi, and theater to Alexander and theater journals, periodicals, martial arts journals and newsletters. Tommy is currently writing another book, ‘An Awakened Life: Evolution of an Alexander Teacher and a revised edition of Touching Presence, translated recently in Japanese and French, with Korean and Spanish translations in-progress.
No newcomer to the Alexander Congresses, Tommy presented papers on his teacher, Dr Frank Pierce Jones at both the first and second International Congresses at Stoney Brook, NY and in Brighton, England and was one of the Second Generation teachers invited to give master classes at the Third International Congress in Engelberg, Switzerland, and has consistently given Continuous Learning classes at the Congresses since their inception. In 2016, along with Debi Adams and Bob Lada, he co-founded ‘In the Company of Support’ an annual Summer Retreat for advanced study in the Alexander work for teachers, trainees and the invited public. Each summer teachers and guest presenters from the Alexander community and in the Arts , Humanities and Science worldwide are invited to teach and participate.
At the onset of the Pandemic, Tommy launched ‘The Gift Of Our Understanding’ a series of online Zoom classes based on his then recently published book ‘Touching Presence,’ granting to those participants who completed the course a ‘Career and Life Enhancement Advanced Study Certificate’ from the Alexander Technique Center at Cambridge. The course continues and now extends beyond the scope of his book into an in depth exploration of how to apply the Alexander principles and concepts to the ever evolving and delightfully surprising evolution of your life. Tommy continues to teach privately in Cambridge, Massachusetts, both in person and online. And, post pandemic he continues to travel and teach in numerous countries.
Email: email@example.com Website: www.easeofbeing.com Summer Retreat: www.easeofbeingretreat.com
About Tommy’s approach to teaching from a review of his book ‘Touchng Beauty’ by Bruce Fertman and Penny Oconner:
Tommy uses the Alexander Technique as his vehicle through which he guides his students into living more compassionately conscious and self-embodied lives. Use is too narrow an arena for Tommy. He is interested in personal transformation.
In our profession, thankfully, we have many gifted teachers doing research into different aspects of Alexander’s work. Some of us are reductionists. Some of us are more physiologically oriented and want to zero in on the precise physiological mechanisms involved in bringing about improved use. This is exciting. At the same time, some of us, like Tommy, are what I would call expansionists. Tommy wants to expand Alexander’s work beyond the workings of the body into the workings of the heart and soul. That is where Tommy’s work lives. This too is exciting. For Tommy, Alexander’s work is a spiritual path, a way of life. I think this is true for many of us. Tommy is as much a healer and secular rabbi/sheik/priest as he is a teacher.
I am fine with this because when reading, Touching Presence, I feel in the presence of a person who is entirely himself, who teaches through who he is. He’s not imitating anyone. He teaches through his own personal ethical framework, expressing his own truth. He teaches through his own language. He teaches out of his own experience, sometimes painful experience. He’s real. He’s authentic.
Tommy often, like a Hasidic rabbi or Sufi sheik, teaches through story. He’s a good storyteller. He shares deeply moving stories with us of his birth, of growing up in the segregated south, of the love for and death of his wife, Julie. These are not just stories. The key concepts which Tommy holds dear about the Alexander Technique are clearly elucidated within these stories.
What are some of these key concepts? Here I will not go into detail; for that I suggest reading Touching Presence and if possible, studying with Tommy.
1.) Perhaps the deepest and most far reaching of all of Tommy’s key concepts is that of “withholding definition”. This is his way of talking about Alexandrian Inhibition, of a radical sort, one that allows a persons’ fixed sense of identity to become unfixed, fluid, changeable. Tommy’s work revolves around the issue of identity, how we define ourselves and by doing so, how we limit ourselves from experiencing who we are and what we might become. In the words of James Baldwin, “Identity would seem to be the garment with which one covers the nakedness of the self: in which case, it is best that the garment be loose, a little like the robes of the desert, through which one’s nakedness can always be felt, and, sometimes, discerned.” Tommy work seems to be about loosening the garment.
2.) Seeing a students’ beauty. Appreciating a student for how and who they are and letting your lessons unfold from there. Tommy’s work is profoundly non-corrective.
3.) Restoring a supportive sense of being as we do what we are doing. Remaining a human being rather than turning into a human doing. Our culture judgmentally demands: “Don’t just stand there, do something!” Tommy’s advice might be: “Don’t just do something, stand there.” First get a sense of where you are, what you are in relation with, how you are being, what you are experiencing and then let your doing arise out of this fullness of being.
4.) What most influences our students and allows them to change depends not so much on what we do but on who we are when we are with them. Ram Dass says, “The only thing you have to offer another human being, ever, is your own state of being.” Maybe Ram Dass heard that from Tommy! Sounds like Tommy.
Touching Presence does not read like a novel, or a textbook, certainly not a manual. Reading Tommy requires some work and some time. I found myself reading just a paragraph or two and then having to stop, become still, quiet, and just think, reflect, meditate before reading on. Touching Presence reads more like a Buddhist Sutra, or like the Cloud of Unknowing, where something important is said over and over again. Humility…is nothing else but a true knowledge and experience of yourself as you are. (Cloud of Unknowing). Or, The word is not the thing. (The Diamond Sutra). Or, Form is emptiness, and emptiness, form. (The Heart Sutra). Ideas not for thinking once and then forgetting, but rather ideas you sit on, like a mother hen, until one day, CRACK, your mind opens, your heart opens, and new possibilities you never could have imagined, present themselves.
If you are training to become an Alexander teacher, or if you are an Alexander teacher and if you are interested not only in The Use of the Body, but are really interested in The Use of the Whole Self, if you wish to go beyond teaching about the body and about movement, if you are interested in your physio-spiritual life, then this book may help you along your way.
– Bruce Fertman
STAT Teaching Member
Alexander Technique Teacher and Trainer
“At this time when the world is falling out of touch, ‘Touching Presence is an antidote and reminder of its importance.”
‘Touching Presence’ is a gift.
STAT Teaching Member
GermanyGermany Ulli’s educational path began in 1974 with studies in art and led to training as a dance pedagogue and Gestalt therapist and then to the Alexander Technique. 1985 Opening of the Studio FREIRAUM. Birth of her son Nikolai in 1995. She completed her training with Chris Stevens and Nadia Kevan in 1994. She owns her own Trainingsschool, Alexander-Technik-Schule Hamburg since 2005. Robert Britton and Giora Pinkas taught there regularly, in addition to many guest teachers. To continue her education and for international exchange she enjoys to go to AMMAS-Meetings.
Due to her mother’s Alzheimer’s dementia, she developed a work with Alexander Technique, dance and voice, which she taught for 12 years in a retirement home. During this time the film was made: “F.M.Alexander-Technik bei Alzheimer-Demenz” Mechthild Rickheit/Ulli Pawlas 2004/2008. This film is available on DVD as well,including a small booklet.
For 37 years, the Alexander Technique has permeated her life, every day and always. “A technique for life,” F.M. Alexander once said. To serve this work makes her happy and grateful.
She is as well very grateful for the many years of guidance of her Zen teacher Kurt KyuSei Österle in meditation and in his own developed practice of Archery.
Currently, she published the booklet: F.M.says:”Always have something to look forward to…” Quotes of the week. A collection of Alexander-Quotes sent out to colleagues, during the Pandemic from March 2020 to March 2021. To buy in the bookshop or under https://www.verlag-iris-foerster.de/p/f-m-says-always-have-something-to-look-forward-to
Gotland, SwedenSweden Wolfgang Weiser, Balance educator & artist trained as an AT teacher in England and Germany between 1993-97 and became over the last 15 years an internationally recognised AT teacher, with qualified educations as well in theatre, circus, ergonomics and pedagogics. He is a member of ATVD, STAT & ATME, has taught the AT at the Theatre University in Stockholm and worked with actors, dancers and musicians all over Sweden. Prior experience includes working as a performer, actor, dancer and juggler since 1984. Now, based on the island Gotland, Sweden he is together with Anna E Weiser running a residential summer project and building an educational art centre for sound and balance. When not standing on his hands or teaching, Wolfgang is doing research about sustainable movement education, where he recently started his PhD studies.