See below for:
Listen to Mona’s audio interview about the Alexander Technique:
Certification and Experience
1985, Lydia Yohay.
1990, American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT).
2003, John Nicholls’ post-graduate “Carrington Way of Working.”
Post-graduate studies: lessons, workshops, master classes (NYC, Amherst, Massachusetts, and at international conferences) with many leading teachers from around the world, including Walter Carrington, Marjorie Barlow, John Nicholls, Deborah Caplan, Marjorie Barstow, Glynn MacDonald, Missy Vineyard, Shmuel Nelkin, Rika Cohen, and Jessica Wolf.
1985-1987, New York City
1987-present, Ithaca, NY
1999-present, Syracuse, NY
Colleges and Universities:
1980, College of New Rochelle School for New Resources, co-taught with a physician the semester-long, core curriculum course “The Human Body.”
1988-1992, Binghamton University, semester-long Alexander Technique courses (Graduate Acting Program; Music Department).
Cornell University, “Anatomy for Dancers,” “Work without Pain” (Alumni Affairs and Development); Ithaca College, “Alexander Technique for Musicians” (Viola Studio); Wells College, “Alexander Technique and Movement;” Hobart-Smith Colleges, “Alexander Technique for Dancers.”
Southern Tier Music Teachers Association; Regional Dental Association; Tompkins County Mental Health Association; Rheumatoid Arthritis Support Group; Post-Traumatic Stress Support Group; Greenstar Cooperative Market (“Work and Play without Pain”); Area Childcare Workers; Finger Lakes School of Massage; Kendall at Ithaca.
Community at large:
Introduction to Alexander Technique; Back Pain Clinic; Alexander Technique for Tai Chi and Yoga; Alexander Technique and Meditation; Alexander Technique for Performing Artists; Alexander Technique for Hands-on Practitioners; Alexander Technique for Repetitive Strain Injury; Alexander Technique and Children. 2015: State University of NY/Cortland: 3-part workshop series for Musical Theater Program–singers, dancers, actors; OperaIthaca–AT/Voice workshop for apprentice program; Guest teacher for AT teacher Refresher Course, Syracuse.
Co-relative Training and Experience
Professional singer, dancer (Trisha Brown Company 1975-1980), dance teacher.
Meditation teacher (Graduate of Jewish Meditation Leadership Training Program, created and mentored by Sylvia Boorstein, and Rabbis Jeff Roth and Sheila Weinberg.)
Studies: Kinesthetic Awareness (Elaine Summers); Body-Mind Centering (Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen); Ideokenesis; Tai chi; Chi Gung; Aikido; Karate; Yoga.
B.A., French, cum laude, Adelphi University.
Completed all requirements except dissertation for Ph.D., Comparative Literature, Binghamton University.
August 1974 I left Vancouver, Canada to study dance in New York City for three months. Luckily I stayed longer, because in April 1975, acclaimed choreographer Trisha Brown asked me to join her company.
Immersed in the most stimulating and gratifying work I could imagine, I soon faced serious challenges. Except for Trisha, I was older (29) than the other members of the company, and their years of training and experience were far greater than mine. Although I sang and tap-danced professionally throughout childhood and adolescence, I only began modern dance in graduate school (Comparative Literature, Binghamton University). I had flat feet, pronated ankles, and a mild scoliosis that would sometimes cause spasms that ached. Not surprisingly, I was often on the verge of injury. When another dancer in the company started taking something called Alexander lessons, I followed.
The lessons prevented injury and taught me more efficient and fluid ways of moving. They also eased physical and emotional fatigue and the stress of life in the city. Along with dance classes and Alexander Technique, I studied Kinesthetic Awareness (Elaine Summers), Ideokinesis (Andre Bernard), and Body-Mind Centering (Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen). I took classes in Tai Chi and Chi Gung with master teacher Maggie Newman, and studied Yoga, Aikido, and Karate. For the Trisha Brown Company and independently, I taught dance, experiential anatomy, and improvisation in New York City and on tour. I also wrote articles on performance for Soho Weekly News and an essay on Trisha Brown for Dance Chronicle.
In 1980 I left the company to develop my own choreography. A few years later I joined an Alexander training program, newly started by one of my teachers, Lydia Yohay (American Center for the Alexander Technique-ACAT). I was immediately captivated by the subtle art of using my hands in the Alexander way, while seeing and sensing the effect of my touch and presence on another person. In 1985 I became certified to teach. After AmSAT (American Society for the Alexander Technique) was formed, I received AmSAT certification (1990).
Meanwhile, my son was born in 1983, and in 1987 we moved to Ithaca, where I continue to base my private practice. I have taught Alexander courses at Binghamton University (Graduate Acting Program and Music Department) and given workshops for Cornell University, Ithaca College, Wells College, and Hobart-Smith Colleges, as well as scores of tailor-made workshops for organizations and groups.
In my late 40’s, I began singing professionally again after more than two decades. For six years I performed throughout the state with bands, including Cayuga Klezmer Revival and Catskill Klezmorim. Around the same time, I was hired as a cantorial soloist and services leader by a local synagogue. I improved and protected my voice with Alexander Technique. It revitalized me after the long drives and late rehearsals, and it helped me focus more easily under pressure.
In 2003 I completed an intensive post-graduate Alexander training course in New York City with John Nicholls. I have studied with teachers in New York City, Amherst, Massachusetts, and abroad at international conferences. Deborah Caplan, John Nicholls, Missy Vineyard, Jessica Wolf, and Glynn McDonald have had the most profound influence on my life and work.
I find Alexander Technique indispensable for learning or improving any skill with maximum efficiency and minimum frustration and risk. Last year I began swimming regularly and relied on Alexander Technique to guide my progress. I enjoy applying it to activities I love, ones that give me pleasure and support my wellbeing – walking, jumping rope, running, Yoga, hiking, singing, dance, meditation, swimming, and Tai Chi.
As I see my students leave pain and frustration behind and go forward with healthier, more satisfying lives, I want everyone, including and especially children, to enjoy the many benefits of Alexander Technique and avoid unnecessary suffering.