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Who was Alexander?

F. Matthias Alexander (1869 – 1955) was an Australian actor who suffered from hoarseness while reciting Shakespearean plays. His doctors’ orders to rest his throat between performances brought only temporary relief: after days or even weeks of rest, he would lose his voice again midway through his next performance. Alexander realized that his hoarseness must be caused by something he was doing while reciting—that is, his manner of reciting.

To uncover what was harmful about his recitation technique, Alexander observed himself in a mirror while variously reciting and speaking normally, the latter of which did not cause him hoarseness. He spent years carefully studying the way he used his head, neck, and back—and his body as a whole. His systematic research led him to discover the innate internal organization of the body and the key concepts that together constitute what we now call the Alexander Technique.

By consistently using his Technique, Alexander so improved his voice that he became renowned for it. Other actors began coming to him for lessons in voice production and in his Technique, and doctors from all over began sending their patients to him. For over sixty years, Alexander shared his remarkable discovery by teaching his Technique, by training others to become teachers, and by writing and lecturing.

How can the Technique benefit me?

What happens in a lesson?

Books, articles, and websites about the Technique



F.M. Alexander