Workshops

Playing with Ease: Unlock your Playing whilst in Lockdown!

Mon 15 – Wed 17 June 2020; 10am – 12pm
Tutors: Josephine Horder, Yeu Meng Chan

Nourish and enrich your private instrumental practice in the comfort and safety of your own home. There will be a daily Zoom session, with a 5 minute break exploring various aspects of your practising, rehearsing and performing experience. All instruments and singers welcome!

What is the course about?

In this workshop inspired by the Feldenkrais® Method you will explore how your current habits may be affecting your ease and enjoyment when you play. You will have the opportunity to develop a dynamic balance in sitting or standing which can support and liberate your relationship to your instrument. You will go on to explore how you use your arms and open up pathways to easier movement which can liberate your potential to express yourself through your playing. You will relate easier movement of the arms to what you have learnt about dynamic balance in sitting or standing. This will be a relaxed, non-judgmental, explorative workshop. We will lead you through gentle and easy movement sequences (Awareness Through Movement®) which are designed to increase your awareness of unconscious habits and open up fresh possibilities for change and improvement. 

At intervals you will return to your instrument to experience the effects of these movement sequences on your playing. We will also give an accessible introduction to the anatomy of the muscular/skeletal system, in as far as it is relevant to playing an instrument.

The Feldenkrais® Method uses movement to change the brain, to refresh our self image, to help us learn and improve, and to discover our full potential. Experienced performers, teachers, and Guild certified Feldenkrais® Practitioners, Josephine Horder (cello) and Yeu Meng Chan (piano) are dedicated to improving all aspects of music making and performance.

What will we cover?

Day 1:

How you sit to play

Use of shoulders, arms and hands

Day 2:

Breathing

Performance anxiety

Day 3:

Injury prevention

Effective practising

The sessions will include slow and gentle Awareness Through Movement sequences, (accessible to all) designed to increase your understanding of your current habits and to open up possibilities for fresh ways of moving and approaching your playing. There will also be time for sharing, questions and discussion.

“Before and After” experiencing, with your instrument,  will be muted so that you can sense any developments in relaxed privacy.

For more information, please go to the website:

https://benslowmusic.org/index.asp?PageID=2887

If you can’t commit to all three days it is possible to book just one or two. Phone Benslow to request this option.

What previous participants said about this course…

“I feel I’m going home with lots of tools and ideas which will gradually filter through into my playing.”

“Definite changes in mobility and posture at the keyboard.”

“Most helpful were the movement routines and ideas of linkages – pelvis, spine, head and shoulders, with better understanding of the skeleton, Clint (plastic skeleton) was a helpful participant.”

“I feel I know much more about the skeleton now – it’s really clarified for me.”


Uri Vardi has asked us to let you know about a course he is launching. It’s a two week virtual institute June 2-13 for musicians (particularly string players and pianists)