The Alexander Technique Applied to the Erick Hawkins Approach to Modern Dance




Nance, Michelle

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The aim of my proposal was to conduct scholarly research on the compatibility of the Alexander Technique and the Erick Hawkins approach to modern dance. My research was gathered from interviews with two experts (Nada Diachenko of Boulder, Colorado and Cynthia Reynolds of New York, New York) both known for combining the Hawkins approach with the Alexander Technique in university-level dance classes, as well as with private clients. Additionally, I gathered research from other published scholarly material on both approaches, as well as my own experiences through observing and participating in workshops, lessons, and classes throughout the project period. The research gathered allowed me to start the foundation for an article entitled, “Heads From Tails: A Study of the Alexander Technique Applied to the Erick Hawkins Approach to Modern Dance; which is scheduled to be submitted to SOMATICS Magazine; a journal that publishes features of interest to both laypersons and professionals in the mind/body fields. In addition to writing the article, I was also invited to formally present my research at three conferences and workshops in New York, NY, Edmond, OK, and San Marcos, TX from October 2004 to March 2005. (See "List of Presentations" below). Further, I have deepened my working relationship with Nada Diachenko, and have been invited to present my research, teach, and perform with her as part of an exchange program between Centro Cultural in San Jose, Costa Rica and the University of Colorado-Boulder in September of 2006. Moreover, my research has deeply affected the quality and scope of my teaching by keeping me abreast of the latest developments in the fields of dance and somatics. I currently teach modern dance courses in the Erick Hawkins Dance Technique. Because of my findings, I have deepened my understanding of the Hawkins technique and have learned how to apply information from the Alexander work into the training of college-level modern dancers.


Research Enhancement Program Final Report


Alexander Technique, Hawkins, Erick, modern dance


Nance, M. (2004). The Alexander Technique applied to the Erick Hawkins approach to modern dance. Research Enhancement Program, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX.


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