Tune UP at the 2017 Parkinson Foundation's Moving Day

18422892_1050788325055651_3208403315226545158_o.jpg

On Sunday morning, October 15, Chicago Alexander Technique teachers Lisa DeAngelisJeremy CohnAndrew McCann, and Daria Okugawa will be providing Alexander Technique (AT)  mini-lessons at Moving Day® Chicago as part of The Poise Project®'s "AT for Parkinson's" initiative.

Moving Day® Chicago is the Parkinson Foundation’s signature fundraising event, celebrating the importance of movement in a united fight to beat Parkinson’s disease. The event features a family-friendly 2-mile walk, kids’ area and the unique Movement Pavilion where instructors demonstrate Parkinson’s-friendly exercises, all of which have been proven to help manage the symptoms of the disease. 

Our team of Alexander teachers, including trainees from Alexander Teacher Training in Chicago (ATTiC), will offer brief lessons at the pavilion table and at two Poise Tune UP! stations on the walking course, as well as sharing handouts, fielding questions, and collecting contact information for The Poise Project's future programming with participants with Parkinson's and their families and friends.

Executive Director Monika Gross launched The Poise Project® in 2016 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit to promote and bring greater accessibility to AT for new populations at all socio-economic levels. The first initiative, "AT for Parkinson's" was awarded a $25,000 regional grant from the Parkinson's Foundation Moving Day® Community Grant program to deliver AT-based classes for care partners of people living with Parkinson's disease at six sites in Gross's state of North Carolina. The Poise Project is collaborating with AT teacher Dr. Rajal G. Cohen at her University of Idaho Mind in Movement Laboratory to measure outcomes of their AT and Parkinson's projects.

In the past year, The Poise Project brought a team of 18 people to the 4th World Parkinson Congress in Portland OR in September 2016, including people with Parkinson's and their care partners who had benefited from AT training, and AT teachers with expertise in the field or with science or allied health background. The Poise Project exhibited at the October 2016 Michael J Fox Foundation Partners in Parkinson's event at the Javits Center in NYC. The Project also fielded teams to give AT mini-lessons at "Poise Tune UP!" stations at San Francisco, San Jose, NC Triangle and Boston Moving Day® walkathons, and led numerous presentations for Parkinson's support groups across North Carolina.

The Poise Project has also led specialized AT for PD teacher trainings in London, Portland, San Francisco and San Jose, delivered a plenary at the April 2017 International Alexander Teacher's Convention in Dublin, delivered presentations to AT teacher training programs, and continues to make vital connections with decision makers and forward thinking advocates in the PD field in both the US and the UK.

To donate to the Parkinson Foundation's Moving Day, visit their Moving Day Donations page. To donate to the Poise Project, visit: http://www.thepoiseproject.org/donations/

 

October 22: The Thinking Person's Guide to Posture with Andrew McCann at the Andersonville String Academy

Alexander & Incognito.jpg

Most of us know that good posture is important, but paying attention to your posture is usually a pretty miserable experience. In a culture that values informality and flexibility, how do you cultivate good posture without looking—and feeling—like a stiff jerk? Or being in constant pain?

In this workshop, we'll examine our beliefs, both personal and cultural, about posture and compare them to scientific models of posture and how we think about posture in the Alexander Technique. We'll play balancing games, and look at the role of support and adaptation and how awareness and intention affect postural coordination. You'll come away with an entirely different idea of what posture is than you had before.

Class is intended for ages 16 and older.

10 participant limit.

Age range of participants: 16 and Older

Date: Sunday, 10/22/2017 4:00 to 5:30 p.m.

Cost: $25

Location: Andersonville String Academy, 4636 N Ravenswood Suite 205

How to sign up:  http://www.alexanderand.com/classes/

About the Alexander Technique:

The Alexander Technique has been taught for 100 years. There is a growing body of scientific research on its benefits. Laboratory research has determined that training in the Alexander Technique improves balance, lowers "axial-rigidity" (meaning the relative stiffness of the spine), and improves smoothness and control in initiating movement, even unusually slowed movements.

Randomized-control trials have shown that Alexander Technique lessons help with a variety of conditions. A 2002 study showed that Parkinson's Disease patients experienced improvements in posture and movement after 24 Alexander lessons. A 2008 study in the British Journal of Medicine showed that 24 Alexander Technique lessons brought an 86% reduction in days with back pain. A 2015 study in the Annals of Internal Medicine demonstrated that Alexander lessons are more effective than physical therapy in reducing chronic neck pain. And a 2016 study, found that Alexander lessons reduced knee pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis. 

The Alexander Technique is taught in leading performing arts programs around the world, including the Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Northwestern University, DePaul, Roosevelt, the Royal Academy of Music in London, the Guildhall, among many others.

About Andrew: 

Andrew McCann is an Alexander Technique teacher and professional violinist. He has been teaching the Alexander Technique privately in Andersonville, Chicago, since 2005. He has taught Alexander workshops and classes at the University of Chicago, Monmouth College, Roosevelt University, DePaul University, Wheaton College, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Richmond University, Florida State University, and the Tainan National University of the Arts in Taiwan.

Andrew trained as an Alexander Technique teacher with Joan and Alexander Murray. He has been certified by the American Society for the Alexander Technique since 2003 and holds degrees from Oberlin College and Conservatory and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

As a violinist, Andrew has performed in productions through Broadway in Chicago, the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Writer's Theater, and Victory Garden's Theater. He is a member of the festival orchestra at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in Santa Cruz, CA. He has appeared with the Grammy Award-winning ensemble, eighth blackbird, along with the New Millennium Orchestra, ensemble dal ninety, International Contemporary Ensemble, Spektral Quartet, and appeared as a backup musician with Jay-Z, Mary J Blige, and Susan Boyle.

October 8: Secrets of Sitting and Standing with Andrew McCann at the Andersonville String Academy

10-23 Chair Exp.jpg

We spend most of our waking lives either sitting or standing, but a lot of the time it doesn't seem like we're doing it right. A lot of the information out there about how to do it better is either not helpful, contradictory, or actually makes things worse. 

In this workshop, we will look in depth at different ways of sitting and standing, and the movement in between. We'll touch on basic muscle physiology, movement anatomy, how to "stand on your hips" when sitting and find balance and poise whether on your feet or in the chair. And we'll explore the role that habit plays in these simplest of movements.

Class is intended for ages 16 and older.

10 participant limit.

Age range of participants: 16 and Older

Date: Sunday, 10/8/2017 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $20

Location: Andersonville String Academy, 4636 N Ravenswood Suite 205

How to sign up:  http://www.alexanderand.com/classes/

About the Alexander Technique:

The Alexander Technique has been taught for 100 years. There is a growing body of scientific research on its benefits. Laboratory research has determined that training in the Alexander Technique improve balance, lowers "axial-rigidity" (meaning the relative stiffness of the spine), and improves smoothness and control in initiating movement, even unusually slowed movements.

Randomized-control trials have shown that Alexander Technique lessons help with a variety of conditions. A 2002 study showed that Parkinson's Disease patients experienced improvements in posture and movement after 24 Alexander lessons. A 2008 study in the British Journal of Medicine showed that 24 Alexander Technique lessons brought an 86% reduction in days with back pain. A 2015 study in the Annals of Internal Medicine demonstrated that Alexander lessons are more effective than physical therapy in reducing chronic neck pain. And a 2016 study, found that Alexander lessons reduced knee pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis. 

The Alexander Technique is taught in leading performing arts programs around the world, including the Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Northwestern University, DePaul, Roosevelt, the Royal Academy of Music in London, the Guildhall, among many others.

About Andrew: 

Andrew McCann is an Alexander Technique teacher and professional violinist. He has been teaching the Alexander Technique privately in Andersonville, Chicago, since 2005. He has taught Alexander workshops and classes at the University of Chicago, Monmouth College, Roosevelt University, DePaul University, Wheaton College, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Richmond University, Florida State University, and the Tainan National University of the Arts in Taiwan.

Andrew trained as an Alexander Technique teacher with Joan and Alexander Murray. He has been certified by the American Society for the Alexander Technique since 2003 and holds degrees from Oberlin College and Conservatory and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

As a violinist, Andrew has performed in productions through Broadway in Chicago, the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Writer's Theater, and Victory Garden's Theater. He is a member of the festival orchestra at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in Santa Cruz, CA. He has appeared with the Grammy Award-winning ensemble, eighth blackbird, along with the New Millennium Orchestra, ensemble dal ninety, International Contemporary Ensemble, Spektral Quartet, and appeared as a backup musician with Jay-Z, Mary J Blige, and Susan Boyle.

Starts October 17: Movement Mindfulness with Sarah Mayhan at Northwestern University

AlexanderTechniqueMayhan1.jpg

Learn the principles of the Alexander Technique to increase mindfulness in your everyday movements and strengthen your mind-body connection in this class with AmSAT certified teacher Sarah Mayhan. A method of postural awareness, the Alexander Technique is known for helping performing artists sustain their energy and physical presence onstage (and is part of the curriculum at Juilliard and the Yale School of Drama). By addressing and changing physical habits, it helps combat the everyday physical stresses caused by hunching over desks, computers, and smartphones. Whether you would like to gain confidence in public speaking or feel less stressed at the end of the day, this course will offer some practical help from the Alexander Technique to bring some ease into your daily life.

Tuesdays, 7:00-8:30 PM, October 17 - November 21

Location: Norris University Center, Northwestern University,  1999 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208

Fee: $71 NU/ $81 Public

**Save $8 by registering before September 18!

To sign up: call the Norris Box Office at 847-491-2305 or online see: http://www.northwestern.edu/norris/arts-and-recreation/minicourses/mind-body/index.html

September 24: Introduction to the Alexander Technique with Andrew McCann at the Andersonville String Academy

kyra-hands-on-warmer.JPG

Whatever its other benefits, the modern world is hard on our bodies. And while our activities are often stimulating to point of overstimulation, there's a repetitiveness that drills in poor habits of posture and movement. We consider it natural to develop discomfort as we age—though the age at which people complain of back, neck, arm, or wrist pain seems to get younger and younger.

The body doesn't change without the mind changing as well. When we sit all day, the body is neglected. The mind is on other things. Postures that are objectively terrible become familiar and strangely comfortable. Then when we try to change, even objective improvements feel weird. 

How do you change if you know what you're doing is bad for you, but everything else feels worse?

This class will show how the Alexander Technique brings our attention to the unconscious patterns of mind and body that shape our everyday behavior and slowly chips away at our sense of well-being. We will begin with a brief talk on the main ideas informing Alexander lessons, look at some of the scientific research behind the Alexander Technique, and then demonstrate how Alexander lessons help raise awareness and give you helpful, constructive strategies for change.

Class is intended for ages 16 and older.

10 participant limit.

Age range of participants: 16 and Older

Date: Sunday, 9/24/2017 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.

Cost: $20

Location: Andersonville String Academy, 4636 N Ravenswood Suite 205

How to sign up:  http://www.alexanderand.com/classes/

About the Alexander Technique:

The Alexander Technique has been taught for 100 years. There is a growing body of scientific research on its benefits. Laboratory research has determined that training in the Alexander Technique improve balance, lowers "axial-rigidity" (meaning the relative stiffness of the spine), and improves smoothness and control in initiating movement, even unusually slowed movements.

Randomized-control trials have shown that Alexander Technique lessons help with a variety of conditions. A 2002 study showed that Parkinson's Disease patients experienced improvements in posture and movement after 24 Alexander lessons. A 2008 study in the British Journal of Medicine showed that 24 Alexander Technique lessons brought an 86% reduction in days with back pain. A 2015 study in the Annals of Internal Medicine demonstrated that Alexander lessons are more effective than physical therapy in reducing chronic neck pain. And a 2016 study, found that Alexander lessons reduced knee pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis. 

The Alexander Technique is taught in leading performing arts programs around the world, including the Juilliard School, Curtis Institute, Northwestern University, DePaul, Roosevelt, the Royal Academy of Music in London, the Guildhall, among many others.

About Andrew: 

Andrew McCann is an Alexander Technique teacher and professional violinist. He has been teaching the Alexander Technique privately in Andersonville, Chicago, since 2005. He has taught Alexander workshops and classes at the University of Chicago, Monmouth College, Roosevelt University, DePaul University, Wheaton College, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Richmond University, Florida State University, and the Tainan National University of the Arts in Taiwan.

Andrew trained as an Alexander Technique teacher with Joan and Alexander Murray. He has been certified by the American Society for the Alexander Technique since 2003 and holds degrees from Oberlin College and Conservatory and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

As a violinist, Andrew has performed in productions through Broadway in Chicago, the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Writer's Theater, and Victory Garden's Theater. He is a member of the festival orchestra at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in Santa Cruz, CA. He has appeared with the Grammy Award-winning ensemble, eighth blackbird, along with the New Millennium Orchestra, ensemble dal ninety, International Contemporary Ensemble, Spektral Quartet, and appeared as a backup musician with Jay-Z, Mary J Blige, and Susan Boyle.

September 23 and November 12: Poised for Performance—Intro to the Alexander Technique with Jeremy Cohn at the Old Town School of Folk Music

A.T. and Singing.jpg

Is your body disconnected from your singing? Do you want fuller, easier breathing? Do you suffer from stage fright? Has poor posture or chronic body tension been getting in the way of your freedom and expression as a vocalist?

The Alexander Technique has helped people connect to their body and breath, to relieve stress, and to reduce unnecessary tension for over a century. It has been used by vocalists as diverse as Sir Paul McCartney, Julie Andrews, Barbara Bonney, and Joni Mitchell. In this introductory workshop, taught by certified teacher Jeremy Cohn, you will learn simple strategies for becoming aware and letting go of habitual tensions which distort your posture, constrict your breathing, and block your expression. You will also learn restorative exercises to help you develop your poise continually in everyday life. Besides group exploration, this workshop will feature the ‘hands-on’ bodywork which is the hallmark of the Alexander Technique. Bring your sense of play and curiosity, and don’t miss the opportunity to experience this work usually available only on the conservatory level! 

Age range of participants: Teenage on Up

Date(s):09/23/2017 Saturday · 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM; or 11/12/2017 Sunday · 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM

Cost: $30 ($28 Old Town School members)

Location: 4544 N. Lincoln Avenue Chicago IL

How to sign up:http://www.oldtownschool.org/classes/detail/?courseid=5456 

Beginning Oct 11, 14 & 16: The Alexander Technique—Effortless Performance with Jeremy Cohn

Group Work.jpg

We are all born with an innate knowledge of how to move and express ourselves. We just have to learn how to get our of our own way.

The Alexander Technique has been helping performers to let go have habits of movement that block their full expressive potential for over a century. Join 1600-hour certified teacher Jeremy Cohn on an 8-week journey of self exploration where you will learn about your natural movement mechanisms and how to stop interfering with them. You will leave with strategies to create more ease, breath, and fluidity in your performance and a more connected body and self. An excellent companion to Green Shirt’s Meisner training or any acting method. Come learn this profoundly transformative technique usually only available at the conservatory level and used by actors such as Kevin Kline, Lupita Nyong’o, Annette Benning, John Cleese, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellan, and many others.

Level 2 further explores integrating A.T. into your performance with the addition of developmental movement, creating a character's breathing and body in detail, and scene work. Previous A.T. experience is required--please message for details.

Age range of participants: High School and Up

Date(s): Level 1: Saturdays (10/14 – 12/9), 10:30am-12:30pm or Mondays (10/16 – 12/4), 11am-1pm. Level 2: Wednesdays (10/11 – 12/6), 11am-1pm

Location: Green Shirt Studio 4407 N. Clark Street Chicago IL

Cost: $275 for 8 Week Session

How to sign up: http://www.greenshirtstudio.com/classes/other-classes/alexander-technique/

June 25 and July 29: Poised for Performance—Intro to the Alexander Technique for Musicians with Jeremy Cohn at Old Town School of Folk Music

Is your body disconnected from your singing? Do you want fuller, easier breathing? Do you suffer from stage fright? Has poor posture or chronic body tension been getting in the way of your freedom and expression as a vocalist?

The Alexander Technique has helped people connect to their body and breath, to relieve stress, and to reduce unnecessary tension for over a century. It has been used by vocalists as diverse as Sir Paul McCartney, Julie Andrews, Barbara Bonney, and Joni Mitchell. In this introductory workshop, taught by certified teacher Jeremy Cohn, you will learn simple strategies for becoming aware and letting go of habitual tensions which distort your posture, constrict your breathing, and block your expression. You will also learn restorative exercises to help you develop your poise continually in everyday life. Besides group exploration, this workshop will feature the ‘hands-on’ bodywork which is the hallmark of the Alexander Technique. Bring your sense of play and curiosity, and don’t miss the opportunity to experience this work usually available only on the conservatory level! 

Ago range of participants: Teenage on Up

Date(s): Sunday 6.25 4-6pm; or Saturday 7.29 2-4pm

Cost: $30 ($28 Old Town School members)

Location: 4544 N. Lincoln Avenue Chicago IL

How to sign up:http://www.oldtownschool.org/classes/detail/?courseid=5456

 

July to September: Effortless Performance—Alexander Technique Classes for Actors with Jeremy Cohn at Green Shirt Studio

We are all born with an innate knowledge of how to move and express ourselves. We just have to learn how to get our of our own way.

The Alexander Technique has been helping performers to let go have habits of movement that block their full expressive potential for over a century. Join 1600-hour certified teacher Jeremy Cohn on an 8-week journey of self exploration where you will learn about your natural movement mechanisms and how to stop interfering with them. You will leave with strategies to create more ease, breath, and fluidity in your performance and a more connected body and self. An excellent companion to Green Shirt’s Meisner training or any acting method. Come learn this profoundly transformative technique usually only available at the conservatory level and used by actors such as Kevin Kline, Lupita Nyong’o, Annette Benning, John Cleese, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellan, and many others.

Ago range of participants: High School and Up

Date(s): Tuesdays July 25th-September 12th 7-9pm and Sundays July 30th-September 17th 11am-1pm. 

Location: Green Shirt Studio 4407 N. Clark Street Chicago IL

Cost: $275 for 8 Week Session

How to sign up: http://www.greenshirtstudio.com/classes/other-classes/alexander-technique/

 

June 27: Movement Mindfulness with Sarah Mayhan at Northwestern University

Learn the principles of the Alexander Technique to increase mindfulness in your everyday movements and strengthen your mind-body connection in this class with AmSAT certified teacher Sarah Mayhan. A method of postural awareness, the Alexander Technique is known for helping performing artists sustain their energy and physical presence onstage (and is part of the curriculum at Juilliard and the Yale School of Drama). By addressing and changing physical habits, it helps combat the everyday physical stresses caused by hunching over desks, computers, and smartphones. Whether you would like to gain confidence in public speaking or feel less stressed at the end of the day, this course will offer some practical help from the Alexander Technique to bring some ease into your daily life.

6:00-7:30 PM, Tuesdays, June 27-August 8* (Please note class will NOT meet on July 4)

Location: Norris University Center, Northwestern University,  1999 Campus Drive, Evanston, IL 60208

Fee: $71 NU/ $81 Public

To sign up: call the Norris Box Office at 847-491-2305 or online see: http://www.northwestern.edu/norris/arts-and-recreation/minicourses/mind-body/index.html