Diana Rumrill, PT. Physical therapy & more for musicians
July 17, 2014

A Belated Tribute

Dr. Brandfonbrener

Dr. Brandfonbrener

I was saddened to hear of Dr. Alice Brandfonbrener’s passing last month. Dr. Brandfonbrener was a guest on my podcast in 2009. I had seen her name on medical journal articles for years and I was a bit starstruck when she agreed to be interviewed. However, she was a down to earth and engaging interviewee, passionate and practical about performing arts medicine.

She is a pioneer in the performing arts medicine field, and will be missed greatly. I hope you enjoy revisiting her interview in her honor.

June 25, 2014

Christine Claire Reed: Dance for the Outer and Inner Self, Part 2

Christine Claire Reed

Use the player above, or this link for direct episode download.

This is a continuation of my first interview with Christine, where we talk more about the emotional and spiritual aspects of the dance work she does.

Christine Claire Reed is the creator of Reed Dance Sadhana, breath-based movement experiments for the soul and dance as spiritual practice. She creates online workshops and virtual movement experiment experiences via various media. She is currently creating an international choreography project, working with dancers/non-dancers from all over the world. She owns/operates Girl on Fire Movement Studio in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Christine writes at GirlonFireDance.com. She has had a variety of trainings from Kripalu Yoga Center in the Berkshires, including Somatic healing, Yoga Dance Teacher Training, Yoga Dance for Special populations teacher training,movement for trauma with world renowned psychiatrist Bessel von der Kolk, restorative dance and the art of Butoh, with internationally acclaimed Butoh/movement artist Maureen Fleming. She has also started her biomechanical alignment training with Katy Bowman, MS. She has studied dance since she could walk and yoga for over 18 years, including an almost exclusive focus on Kundalini yoga for the past 13 years.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ChristineClaireReed

Music mentioned:

http://www.zoekeating.com/

http://hauschka-net.de

May 12, 2014

Announcement! Will be away from DC from June 7 – early September!

I will be out of state for the summer – up north in Connecticut doing some work, practicing lots of violin, and having the chance to visit with friends and family!

I will be in the DC area until approximately June 7, and then I’ll be away for June, July, and August.

I’ll still be answering emails and can get people scheduled for September as needed.

Have a great summer!

April 10, 2014

Christine Claire Reed: Dance for the Outer and Inner Self, Part 1

Christine Claire Reed

Use the player above, or this link for direct episode download.

Christine Claire Reed is the creator of Reed Dance Sadhana, breath-based movement experiments for the soul and dance as spiritual practice. She creates online workshops and virtual movement experiment experiences via various media. She is currently creating an international choreography project, working with dancers/non-dancers from all over the world. She owns/operates Girl on Fire Movement Studio in Erie, Pennsylvania.

Christine writes at GirlonFireDance.com. She has had a variety of trainings from Kripalu Yoga Center in the Berkshires, including Somatic healing, Yoga Dance Teacher Training, Yoga Dance for Special populations teacher training,movement for trauma with world renowned psychiatrist Bessel von der Kolk, restorative dance and the art of Butoh, with internationally acclaimed Butoh/movement artist Maureen Fleming. She has also started her biomechanical alignment training with Katy Bowman, MS. She has studied dance since she could walk and yoga for over 18 years, including an almost exclusive focus on Kundalini yoga for the past 13 years.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ChristineClaireReed

Music mentioned:

http://www.zoekeating.com/

http://hauschka-net.de

January 12, 2014

Group Alexander Technique workshops in Feb and March!

Hey there everybody! I hope that 2014 is promising to be a great year already. I’m deep in the throes of physical therapy clients, daily violin practice, and getting out and walking despite the wet and gray weather (hopefully we’re now past the 6 degree days of early January!).

If you’re setting New Year’s resolutions for health, consider the small things that add up besides just being another body at the temporarily crowded gym. Go for a 15 minute walk before and after work, prop up your computer on some phone books and stand at your desk for a while (what else would you use them for?), sit on the floor and/or prop up on your stomach to read, practice a few yoga postures or Alexander Technique constructive rest for 15 minutes.

And best of all, something to look forward to for February and March – I’m offering two 4-week sessions of group Alexander Technique lessons through the Washington Conservatory of Music! Contact them by phone or email to register – it’ll be a fabulous way to spend the tail end of winter. Here’s the catalog details:

Alexander Technique for Musicians
Class 1: Tu, Feb 4, 11, 18, 25, 7:00 – 8:30 pm
Class 2: Tu, Mar 4, 11, 18, 25, 7:00 – 8:30 pm
Teacher: Diana Rumrill
Freedom of movement and efficient body position are critical to joyful music-making! Unlike a treatment or exercise program, the Alexander Technique is a hands-on educational process that is commonly offered as part of the curriculum at the world’s most esteemed music schools and is popular among actors, dancers, athletes and public speakers. In this four-week introductory session, Diana Rumrill (Alexander teacher, Licensed Physical Therapist and musician) will show you techniques to change habits that inhibit fluid movement and produce tension, distortion, or pain in your body. Benefits of the Alexander Technique include a deeper internal sense of your body in sitting and standing positions, regaining good posture, correct spinal alignment, calmer breathing, more energy, and freedom to express your music. Plan on plenty of “ah hahs” and laughter. Wear comfortable clothing. Non-musicians are welcome. 4 sessions. $120 (plus $15 registration fee to non-Conservatory students)

September 1, 2013

Dr. Noa Kageyama: Performance Psychologist

Dr. Noa Kageyama, Performance Psychologist

Use the player above, or this link for direct episode download.

Performance psychologist Dr. Noa Kageyama is on the faculty of The Juilliard School and is the performance psychology coach for the New World Symphony in Miami, FL. A conservatory-trained violinist with degrees from Juilliard and Oberlin, Dr. Kageyama studied with Stephen Clapp, Ronald Copes, Franco Gulli, Paul Kantor, Masao Kawasaki, Roland & Almita Vamos, and Donald Weilerstein before making the leap to psychology.

He specializes in working with performing artists, teaching them how to utilize sport psychology principles and more consistently demonstrate their full abilities under pressure. Dr. Kageyama has presented workshops at institutions including Indiana University, New England Conservatory, Oberlin, and the U.S. Armed Forces School of Music, at programs such as the Starling-Delay Symposium, Juilliard Conducting Workshop, and The Perlman Music Program, and for organizations like the Music Teachers’ National Association and the National Association of Teachers of Singing.

Dr. Kageyama’s work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Musical America, Strings Magazine, and Lifehacker. He maintains a private coaching practice and runs a performance psychology blog called the The Bulletproof Musician.

April 16, 2013

Jeffrey Agrell and Evan Mazunik: Improvisation for All

Jeffrey Agrell and Evan Mazunik

Use the player above, or this link for direct episode download.

Jeffrey Agrell is a teacher, performer (horn), writer, composer, and improviser of contemporary classical music. His books, Improvisation Games for Classical Musicians and Improv Games for One Player are published by GIA Music. His day job for the past decade has been teaching horn at the University of Iowa. His first career was as a professional symphony musician during a rather lengthy visit to Switzerland. He has scratched a long-time creative itch over the years with over one hundred published articles, a horn blog, and several dozen published compositions (many recorded on CDs by various performers). He is a mostly former guitarist (folk, classical, jazz), but still has a closet full of guitars (some for sale) as well as an enthusiastic if mostly amateur percussionist. Jeffrey Agrell’s horn blog is Horn Insights and his web site is the University of Iowa Horn Studio Web Site.

Evan Mazunik is a composer/performer raised on the prairies of Iowa and rooted in Queens, NY. Fluent in Soundpainting, a sign language for live composition, Mazunik is composer/director of ZAHA, his experimental chamber ensemble. His compositions include commissions for jazz band, chorus, theater, dance, and film, and his work was featured in a documentary for the Finnish Broadcasting Company. Mazunik has performed with Anthony Braxton, Walter Thompson, Carla Bley, Robin Eubanks, Danielson, and Sufjan Stevens, and has played at creative music venues such as Roulette, The Stone, Barbes, and Galapagos. He received a Bachelors degree in piano performance and a Masters in jazz studies from the University of Iowa and has taught improvisation at the University of Indiana and the Royal Academy of Music in London.

February 6, 2013

Fake it till you become it

Even though in Alexander Technique the word “posture” has a lot of negative connotations associated with it, I think this Ted talk on the power of nonverbal language on your own communication with yourself is extremely interesting. When I think about “power postures”, I also think about how the calming effects of inhibition and direction that you can learn with the AT give you much more of a sense of presence and control, no matter what your body position. See what you think.

February 4, 2013

But I know this already!

I have a wonderful young violin student who loves playing the violin – and is eager to play AS FAST AS SHE CAN. She rushes through, fudging what she’s not sure of, to get to the parts of her pieces she can play the fastest. Half notes and ritards get a lick and a promise. As soon as an etude or scale gets repetitive, she accelerates the tempo. Over the years we’ve worked together, I have resorted from everything from metronomes to single notes to accompanying her on the piano at a snail’s pace to get her to slow down, pay attention, breathe, and enjoy making the music that lies in the present details. And she’s getting there bit by bit!

Working with her has a special place in my heart because she reminds me so much of myself. Besides my own childhood propensity for rushing ahead to the next piece, she helps me to see when I try to push, force, or in Alexander technique terms, end-gain my way through all kinds of musical and non-musical problems. It’s the result of thinking,

“I know this already! What’s next?”

However. Breakthroughs and deep changes happen when we say to ourselves, again and again,

“What else is here to learn if I stay right here with this?”

Applies double for adults, “experts”, teachers, therapists, impatient people, busy people, and those who are sure they know how to do it. Bonus points for asking yourself the question when you’re in some type of pain.

What has been your experience with these two ways of being?

November 29, 2012

Glenn Kurtz talks about his book Practicing

Use the player above, or this link for direct episode download

Glenn Kurtz is the author of Practicing: A Musician’s Return to Music (Knopf, 2007; Vintage Books, 2008), which the New York Times called “a thoughtful and fluid meditation” and Newsday hailed as “the book of a lifetime.” Practicing has been featured on NPR’s “Weekend Edition” with Scott Simon, “To the Best of our Knowledge,” and numerous other NPR programs. An Italian edition appeared in 2010. Glenn’s essays and reviews have been published in the New York Times, Southwest Review, ZYZZYVA, and elsewhere.

He is also the host of “Conversations on Practice,” a discussion series about the writing process and the writer’s life, held at McNally-Jackson Bookstore in New York City. Guests have included Jennifer Egan, Patti Smith, Arthur Golden, Francine Prose, Daniel Mendelssohn, and many others. A graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music-Tufts University Double Degree Program, he holds a Ph.D. in German studies and comparative literature from Stanford University and has taught at San Francisco State University, California College of the Arts, and Stanford University. He is currently on the writing faculty of New York University’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies. His website is www.glennkurtz.com.

The music on this podcast is “Tracing a wheel on water” (2003) composed by Kevin Siegfried and performed by Aaron Larget-Caplan. A recording of this piece is available on Aaron Larget Caplan’s CD “Tracing a Wheel on Water”.

You can hear Glenn and Aaron doing a reading and recital together! More details at www.GBHConcerts.com.

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