Throughout the schoolyear, students at Codarts have the opportunity to join Alexander Technique workshops and courses. We asked our teacher, Hildegarde De Baets, to explain what Alexander Technique is, and found several students to share how Alexander Technique has helped them to optimise their performance.
What is Alexander Technique?
“When I was a performer myself, I ran into physical and mental issues related to performing and being on stage. This led me to a path of research that resulted in engaging in a 3 year Alexander Technique training course, a method that has been recognised as an important foundation in developing the professional skills of an artist. By creating a safe environment in the classes I help the musician to identify habitual physical, mental and emotional responses that put undue stress and strain on their balance, coordination and wellbeing. By letting go of unnecessary effort the movement becomes more effortless, light and free. The students also develop a basic understanding of how the body functions based on anatomy and science. In this way, they obtain a better understanding of how we function, which leads to more awareness of the possibility of choices while they are practising.”
Hildegarde De Baets – Teacher Alexander Technique
Why did you choose this course and what do you hope to learn?
“I chose the Alexander Technique minor because I want to sing freer and more relaxed. Hildegarde helps me to become more aware of my body and posture. Her calm and gentle approach during the lessons enables me to find ways to relax. This minor is a valuable and indispensable addition to my main subject lessons.”
Yannah Bruins – Alexander Technique minor 2018-2019
How has Alexander Technique influenced your playing and performance?
“By regularly practising with Alexander Technique I have became more aware and appreciative of my body and my posture. I physically experience less stress and tension and know how to gently change this when needed. Alexander Technique has helped me to be more conscious and relaxed while playing the violin, both while studying and on stage. As a result, my playing is now more peaceful and grounded.”
Djessy van den Dries – Alexander Technique course 2017-2018
“The Alexander Technique showed me how my body reacts differently when playing under stress. Hildegarde helped me identifying these wrong habits and explained why they happen and how to avoid them. Now I am aware and can better search for a more comfortable way of playing.”
Joana Valadas Roxo Juzarte Rolo – Alexander Technique course 2017-2018