COMPANION

History

F. M. Alexander successfully sued the actor Robert Loraine for non-payment of lessons in 1909. The Case On the evening of 5 March 1909 the actor Robert Loraine contacted F. M. Alexander because he had lost his voice. Loraine was due to perform in The School for Scandal the next day and asked Alexander for help. Alexander started work with him that evening, and proceeded to give him 15 lessons. Loraine then discontinued having lessons. Alexander sent Loraine an invoice for 50 guineas for 30 lessons, as his terms were that payment was due in advance. Loraine refused to pay and the case...
This 1960 court case revolved around the right of teachers of the Alexander Technique who were no longer teaching at Ashley Place to use the name ‘Alexander Technique’. In July 1958 the plaintiffs Beaumont Alexander, Ivy Lilian Ada Johnson, John Graham Vicary, and Practitioners of the F. M. Alexander Technique Ltd. issued a writ against Ellen Avery Margaret Goldie, Janet Irene Stewart, Walter Hadrian Marshall Carrington, John Skinner and The Use of the Self Ltd. (the defendants) Background When F. M. Alexander died in October 1955, the teachers who worked at his...
The ‘Nobel Prize episode’ refers to an exchange of letters in New Scientist and Science 1974–75, in response to Nikolaas Tinbergen’s 1973 Nobel Prize lecture. New Scientist correspondence The American journalist and author Edward Maisel contacted New Scientist complaining about Tinbergen’s representation of the Alexander Technique in his Nobel Prize lecture. The outcome was an article, ‘Did Nobelist go too far in advocating Alexander Technique’ by Roger Lewin.[1] Lewin is communicating Maisel’s objections, primarily that, contrary to the...
‘Offshoots’ are here defined as techniques and methods inspired by or evolved from the Alexander Technique, in whole or part. This is different from applying the Alexander Technique to an activity. ‘Offshoots’ are not dependent on previous knowledge of the Technique. Some are presented below, in chronological order. Dr Robert Henry Scanes Spicer (1856-1925) Dr Spicer became a pupil of Alexander’s in 1904. He started to claim his own version of Alexander’s ideas as a medical discovery in July 1909 with his paper “Some Points in the Mechanics of...
The name ‘Alexander Technique’ or ‘F. M. Alexander Technique’ was not used by Alexander originally, but it came about gradually and it appears to have been used for lack of a better name. By the 1940s it became the established name for Alexander’s work. History For many years Alexander did not settle on a name, but used a variety of names as he developed his technique, examples include: The Art of Breathing (1895)[1] The New Method (1900)[2] The perfect respiratory treatment (1903)[3] The Alexander Breathing Method (1905)[4] Mr F. Matthias...
In 1945 Alexander sued the South African journal Manpower for defamation and won the case in 1948. The official name of the case is: ‘Frederick Matthias Alexander, Plaintiff, versus Ernst Jokl, Eustace Henry Cluver, Bernard Maule Clarke, Defendants’ The case was heard February – March 1948. Judgment was given in Alexander’s favour 19 April 1948, and he was awarded £1,000 in damages. The judgment was appealed 21 April 1948, but the judgment was upheld 3 June 1949. Background Irene Tasker had moved to South Africa in 1935 and established a...