In early April Yeu Meng Chan and Josephine Horder ran a weekend workshop at Benslow Music titled ‘Liberate your Music Making with the Feldenkrais Method’.
After two and a half relaxed but intensive days all participants were indeed playing with palpable freedom and a risk-taking attitude and were clearly really enjoying applying what they had learnt.
“I feel I’m going home with lots of tools and ideas which will gradually filter through into my playing.”
The content of the workshop
Through Movement group lessons with episodes for individual attention when each participant played their instrument. They had been asked to bring a short excerpt of music or even simply a scale in order to sense change and development as the workshop progressed.
“Definite changes in mobility and posture at the keyboard.”
A silent but essential and illuminating figure was our plastic skeleton, Clint. Through observation and discussion, the four students learnt about the spine, the mechanics of the shoulder girdle and the function of the sit bones in balanced sitting.
Most helpful were the movement routines and ideas of linkages – pelvis, spine, head and shoulders, with better understanding of the skeleton, “Clint was a helpful participant.”
The workshop themes were to discover the role of the spine and pelvis in balanced sitting, and freedom of the hands arms and shoulders in relation to the whole. The participants responded enthusiastically, and by the end were looking taller, had more vitality in their posture as they played, their feet were well grounded and they had a more direct connection to their tone and projection.
“I feel I know much more about the skeleton now – it’s really clarified for me.”
The players went home with plenty of strategies to help them sustain and develop the improvements they had experienced through the workshop. Participants and tutors alike were satisfied and happy with what had been achieved and the weekend was immensely enjoyed by all.
All photographs taken at Benslow Music and used with permission.