Robyn, Bruce, Midori, and Sakiko

Robyn, Bruce, Midori, & Sakiko


Robyn Avalon

Founding Director, AASW/NW & the Contemporary Alexander School; Creator/Founder, Living in a Body™, Embodying Grace, & Ways of Knowing


Robyn has been a student of Alexander’s Work for over 35 years. She is the Founding Director of the Contemporary Alexander School, formerly known as the Alexander Alliance Southwest/Northwest, teacher training programs in Santa Fe, NM, and Portland, OR. She is also on the core faculty of Alexander Alliance training programs in Japan and Germany, as well as on the faculty of Meadowmount School of Music.

CIMG0943She offers introductory thru post-graduate workshops throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Robyn is also the creator of Living in a Body™: The Quintessential Owner’s Guide to Natural Movement. This 20 hour body mapping professional certification course is offered worldwide, with translations available in English, Japanese and German, and soon, Italian and French.


In her private practice, Robyn incorporates her expertise in Alexander, Cranial Sacral, Visceral Unwinding, Deep Imagery, Matrix Energetics ® as well as her exploration of quantum and scalar physics, and altered ‘ways of knowing’ to create a unique somatic experience. She offers private lessons throughout North America, Asia and Europe in education, arts, health, and corporate venues. While devoting her practice to the future of the Work, Robyn has had the great privilege of studying with four first-generation Alexander teachers: Marjorie Barstow, Richard M. Gummere Jr., Elisabeth Walker, and Erika Whittaker, and enjoys passing on their direct lineage from Mr. Alexander.

 in the voice studio

She has worked with many leading performing arts organizations, including opera companies: NYC, Metropolitan, DC, Boston, Santa Fe, Rome, Firenze, Koln; orchestras: American Ballet Theater, NYC Ballet, Orpheus, Santa Fe Opera, NM, Performance Santa Fe, Cincinnati, Boston, DC, Pittsburgh, Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Firenze, Rome (Italy), Meinz, Frankfurt, Freiburg, Bremen, Krefeld (Germany), Tokyo, Kyoto (Japan); dance companies: NYC Ballet, American Ballet Theater, Joffery Ballet, Aspen/SF Ballet, Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp, Alvin Ailey, Merce Cunningham, Atlanta Ballet, Seattle Ballet, Maria Benitez, Meredith Monk; and circuses: Wise Fool, Ringling Bros/Barnum & Bailey, Cirque de Soleil.


In athletics, she has also taught for the US Olympic Dressage Team, the Ladies Professional Golf Association, the Texas Aggies, professional Boxing, and numerous equestrian events throughout North America. She regularly offers continuing education workshops at National Conventions for Osteopathic Physicians, Dentistry, Fiber Artists, the National Opera Association, and National Centered Riding Association, and in a wide variety of movement disciplines. She has been a guest artist in numerous universities worldwide.


In addition to her somatic work, Robyn is a professional director, choreographer, dancer and musician. She was a founding member of two rhythm tap companies – American Tap Dance Orchestra (NYC), and SOLED OUT! (NM). She has performed extensively with Honi Coles and the Copasetics, Savion Glover, Gregory Hines, Brenda Bufalino, and most of the “old timers” of rhythm tap. Her theatrical resume includes regional, stock, and dinner theaters, international and national tours, Off-Broadway, film and television. Her work has been seen in venues as diverse as Off-Broadway, NYC’s Blue Note Jazz Club, Carnegie Hall, and The White House.

Bruce Fertman

Founder, Alexander Alliance International, Peaceful Body Founding Director, Alexander Alliance Germany

DSC_0997Bruce works with people from all walks of life, including artists from varied disciplines. He helps artists learn how not to hurt themselves, how to be less anxious, and how to recover expediently from injuries. He helps them become sensitive, powerful, and free.

Bruce has worked with members of the Berlin Philharmonic, Radio France, The National Symphony, and for the Curtis Institute of Music. He has worked with singers, conductors, choral directors, and instrumentalists. 
For 6 years, Bruce taught Movement for the Actor at Temple and Rutgers Universities. For 13 years, he taught for the Five College Dance Program in Amherst, Massachusetts. Recently, he worked with the Argentine Tango community in Buenos Aires, and in Germany.

He taught for the School of Physiotherapy at The University of Goettingen, in Germany, for ten years. He also worked with the physically challenged which, in one way or another, is all of us. 
For 20 years, Bruce has taught annually in Japan, coaching students and teachers of traditional Japanese arts.

He studied Japanese Tea Ceremony at Urasenke in Kyoto, Japan for 8 years, as well as Aikido. For 36 years he has practiced T’ai Chi Chu’an, and for 30 of those years, he has taught Tai Chi.

In 1982 he co-founded the Alexander Alliance, an intergenerational, multicultural community which conducts teacher training programs in the Alexander Technique, in Tai Chi Chu’an, in The Walking Way, and in The Peaceful Body.

Bruce apprenticed under Marjorie L. Barstow for sixteen years, the first person certified to teach Alexander’s work. He is the Director and Senior Teacher for the Alexander Alliance International, for the Alexander Alliance Germany, and for The Movement School in Santa Fe.

“I have literally touched humanity, and humanity has touched me. I love people. I respect them. I am moved by them, by their courage, and by their goodness. My life has been a labor and a privilege.”
-Bruce Fertman 

Sakiko Ishitsubo

Founding Director, Alexander Alliance Tokyo

DSC_0964Sakiko’s movement career began 30 years ago, as a young athlete. When she was 26, while in Japan, she worked with Bruce Fertman and decided to become an Alexander teacher. She moved to Colorado, studied English intensively for a year, then began her Alexander studies for the next three years in Philadelphia. Upon graduating, Sakiko was accepted into a Master’s Program in Physical Therapy. She graduated, moved back to Japan, married, had a child, and began an Alexander Teacher Training Program in Tokyo. In addition, she maintains a lively private practice.

Midori Shinkai

Founding Director, Alexander Alliance Kyoto-Osaka-Kibi

DSC_0063-1Midori Shinkai, director of The Alexander Alliance Japan/Kyoto, has been studying Alexander’s work for 35 years. Having trained and translated for dozens of internationally renowned teachers, her understanding is exceptionally comprehensive. Her doctoral research in Anthropology explored how Korean, Chinese, and Japanese women sit, stand, walk, and move. Midori’s teaching is informed by her years of study of Sen-Tai, a traditional Japanese approach to health.

Margarete Tüshaus

 Core Faculty, Alexander Alliance Germany, AASW/NW and the Contemporary Alexander School

DSC_0929Margarete has taught intensely for over 19 years through private lessons and workshops in Alexander, dance, music, meditation and horseback riding. Coming from a diverse background ranging from biology to ballet, she feels equally at home at her farm working with horses, as in the world of artwork, meditation, and dance.  A passionate tango dancer since 1999, Margarete helps tango dancers develop more consciousness in their thought, movement, and behavior.  Her interest is in the body-mind connection and the profound study of human nature in all its expressions.

Margarete has been a teacher of the Alexander Technique since 1999, and is a member of the GLAT (Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique).  She is on the Core Faculty of Alexander Alliance Germany and Alexander Alliance US: The Contemporary Alexander School.

Adriana Hardy

Creator/Founder of Body, Breath, & Sound; Core Faculty of AASW/NW & the Contemporary Alexander School

 BB&S with actress

Adriana Hardy has had an extensive, eclectic professional career spanning opera, classical recital venues, musical theater, and theater direction.  She is also a Feldenkrais practitioner, a long-term student/teacher of yoga, Inner-Body Work, and vocal science.  She is a master voice teacher, specializing in troubleshooting technical issues for professional singers.  She offers private lessons, coaching, and opera workshops and has developed a unique study of the body mechanics of breath and sound, which she offers in the US and Europe.

Yehuda Kuperman

CAS Mentor in Classical Forms and Styles

Yuda teaching at CAS in Santa Fe

Yehuda mentors CAS in understanding the beauty and form of the classical styles, passed to him through his teachers Walter Carrington, Peter Scott, and primarily, Patrick MacDonald.  Yuda help us bridge classical with contemporary styles, anchoring our understanding and skill within the classical forms.

A bit about Yehuda, in his own words:

The combination of two distinct areas which I have studied as a young man, religion and later on physical education is probably what motivated me to look for the connection between body and spirit. The experience I had in my first lessons, touched the suppressed aspects of my hidden wishes.

I graduated in May 1967, at 16 Ashley Place with Patrick Macdonald as my teacher. It took me years of sharing with my students, to understand that the physical senses of joy I felt from his touch, was the taste of spirit. Spirit, which exists in pure and honored togetherness.

Today, I enjoy sharing with groups and special time with my 9 grandchildren.