Riverside Initiative’s Faculty
Our faculty draw from diverse fields of expertise and professional experience in a wide variety of institutional and performing arts settings. They are committed to life-long learning and growth on an individual and collective basis.
Nanette Walsh, MFA, m.AmSAT, is founder and director of RIAT, and author of Unsmudged: An Encounter with Peggy Williams, a First Generation Teacher of the Alexander Technique. She co-founded Alexander Technique New York City (ATNYC) and served as senior faculty (2006-2014); taught at the American Center for the Alexander Technique (ACAT), Associate Faculty (2005-2008); Alexander Technique Workshops, Sweet Briar, Virginia (2007-2012); NYC School of Visual Arts (SVA) (1987-1990). She holds an MFA from The College of Visual and Performing Arts at Syracuse University (1982); graduated from ACAT (1995); undertook extensive post-graduate work with Walter Carrington, Peggy Williams and Pearl Ausebel. Appointed to AmSAT’s Board of Directors in 2009, served extended tenure AmSAT Chair until 2011; Professional Conduct Committee (2008); Leadership Advisory Council (2012-2014.) Awarded: AmSAT’s Certificate of Merit: 2012; Certificate of Appreciation: 2013 and 2014. Long standing practitioner of tai chi, various forms of contemplative meditation, and depth psychology; currently doing graduate studies at Union Theological Seminary (UTS): Religion and Psychology.
Lori Schiff, M.AmSAT, is an associate director of RIAT as well as a faculty member at Riverside Initiative for the Alexander Technique, The Juilliard School, Guest Teaching Artist New World Symphony and the United States Military Academy Band, Internationale Meistersinger Akademie. Former Faculty The Aspen Music Festival and School, 92nd Street Y. Ms. Schiff qualified at ACAT in 1987. She has introduced the Alexander Technique to groups and institutions across the country including Master Classes at The Metropolitan Opera, West Point Military Academy, The San Diego Symphony, Baltimore Symphony Youth Orchestras, National Youth Orchestra of China, Aspen Sports Medicine, AmSAT Meetings in San Fransisco, Ann Arbor, Las Vegas, New York City, Boston and Minneapolis. She was a guest speaker at The International Congress for the Alexander Technique in Lugano, Switzerland. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of AMSAT . Private practice in New York City. More information and a link to her video, The Alexander Technique: Musician’s Method for Improvement can be found at www.lorischiff.com
Ariel Carson, m.AmSAT, SEP, is an associate director of RIAT as well as a faculty member. She received her teaching certification (1600 hours over 3 years) through Alexander Technique New York City (ATNYC), headed by teachers Nanette Walsh and John Nicholls. She has assisted at The Juilliard School, as well as taught at Boston University where she earned her BFA. Ariel previously worked as a teaching artist for the Leadership Program, teaching leadership skills through the arts to under-served students in New York City public schools. She is the organizer of the Healing for Activists NYC chapter. Ariel also utilizes her training as a Somatic Experiencing practitioner to help people release and resolve traumas that have gotten stuck in their nervous systems. From her work with U.S. veterans, to performers, to activists, to the LGBTQ community, Ariel is most interested in teaching the Alexander Technique as part of a holistic and multifaceted approach to cultivating greater sustainability, vitality, and freedom in the body-minds of her current and future clients. www.redefiningposture.com
Emily Faulkner has been an AmSAT certified teacher of the Alexander Technique since 1999, having received her training at the American Center for the Alexander Technique in New York City. Faulkner is a faculty member at Movement Research, where her field of specialty is the application of the Alexander Technique to improvisation. Coming from a dance background, she has danced with a coterie of downtown choreographers and presented her own work nationally and internationally through Emily Faulkner Dance. Faulkner has expanded the usual reach of the Alexander Technique practice by working with blind and visually impaired students at the Lighthouse Guild and by working as the movement coach for Steady Buckets, a free youth basketball league which attracts racially and economically diverse kids and teens from all over the New York City. Faulkner also teaches a yearly workshop in interview and presentation skills at the Dauphine University in Paris and for the English speaking debate Club at the Jussieu University. She has served as an artistic visiting teacher at Wesleyan University. And finally, she loves to ski! www.emilyfaulkner.com
Peggy Florin, MFA (1989) Bennington College, completed her AmSat certified training( 2014) at the Manhattan Center for the Alexander Technique under the direction of Caren Bayer. Peggy has been a dancer, choreographer and teacher for many years. Her initial Alexander studies began in the late ‘80‘s, with Kate Judd, and later with Alex Farkas, Giora Pinkas, Eva Karczag and Nanette Walsh. After receiving an MFA in Dance she was appointed to the dance faculty at Bennington College where she taught for twenty years. She then became an Associate Professor of Dance at Bard College, where she teaches ballet, modern dance and the Alexander Technique. In her private Alexander practice, Peggy integrates her years of study of anatomy & movement to awaken and facilitate grounding, ease and expansiveness in her students.
Robin Schiff, m.AmSAT, has been teaching the Alexander Technique since 1990. She has been on the faculty at Brooklyn College since 2004 and taught department chairs previous to that. She developed and taught both the Alexander Technique (2004-20011) and Pilates classes (2004-present) for the Department of Kinesiology. Robin was previously on the faculty at Mannes Conservatory of Music. She’s given workshops at the San Francisco and Boston AmSAT general meetings, and at ACAT, BAC, ATNYC and ATS. Robin has taught ongoing classes and workshops throughout Brooklyn including Brooklyn Parkinson Group, Kingsborough Community College Dept of Sports, Fitness and Therapeutic Recreation and as Alexander Technique Specialist for the Division of Complementary Medicine New York Methodist Hospital. Robin holds a BA in Music Therapy and certifications in the Alexander Technique and Pilates. She maintains a mostly Brooklyn based practice in Prospect Lefferts Gardens.
Shelley Senter has been a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique since 1994 (ACAT) and is an independent dance artist whose work has been presented throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and Russia. She has been critically recognized and awarded for her distinct approach to movement, performance and pedagogy, investigating the application of the principles of the Alexander Technique to the performing body and mind and collaborating with distinguished artists from diverse disciplines for nearly thirty years. Her practice is rooted in the investigation of movement, the consciousness of kinesthetic experience, and the participation of the self in its continuous reorganization in time, space and imagination. Her interest as a dancer lies in improvisation, collaboration and experimentalism, and in the coordination or layering of simple and non-virtuous movement to create a virtuosic complexity. Current research includes embodied memory, the permanence of ephemeral experience, as well as conscious ‘seeing’. Senter teaches internationally and has a private practice in New York City.
Eleanor Taylor, m.AmSAT, is on the Musical Theatre faculty of the Manhattan School of Music, and maintains a private teaching studio at Union Square, Manhattan, where she specializes in working with actors and singers to improve performance, prevent injury and reduce anxiety using the Alexander Technique, and offers ongoing small group classes for performers. She currently serves on the faculty of Respiro Opera and the Riverside Initiative for the Alexander Technique, and formerly at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She has studied AT for 18 years with instructors including Gwen Ellison, Lori Schiff, John Nicholls and Nanette Walsh, and completed certification at ATNYC. She has also trained in Jessica Wolf’s Art of Breathing and Betsy Polatin’s The Actor’s Secret methods, and holds B.M. and M.M. degrees in voice from New England Conservatory and the University of Minnesota. Eleanor has led Alexander Technique workshops for the Music Educators Association of NYC/United Federation of Teachers, the Freedom to Act Conference on Acting and AT, Brooklyn Opera Works’ Summer Vocal Arts Institute, the Brooklyn Music School Opera Studies program and the Danbury Chamber Music Intensive. www.eleanortaylorAT.
Rebecca Tuffey, m.AmSAT, received her teacher certification from ACAT (2004), under the directorship of Joan Frost, and served as volunteer and Associate faculty (2004-2018) on the ACAT Teacher Certification Program. Rebecca is an Adjunct professor at Pace Performing Arts in the BFA program for Acting in Film, Television, Voice-Over & Commercials and Part-time Faculty at The New School, where she works with students fromJazz, Mannes, and Drama. Rebecca certified with Jessica Wolf as an Art of Breathing Instructor (2010) and continues to explore how the ways in which we breathe intersect with creativity, ease (in body and mind), balance, and movement. Rebecca holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, where she began her encounter with the Alexander Technique in 1994, and she attended the British American Drama Academy (London). Rebecca is an accomplished Alexander Technique teacher, whose private students have ranged in age from 9 to 102 years old. She maintains a dynamic private practice in Union Square, and sometimes, in Astoria, Queens. www.RebeccaTuffey.net
Anne Waxman has been practicing the Alexander Technique for 30 years. She is a teaching member of the American Society for the Alexander Technique (AmSAT) and was Senior Faculty at the American Center for the Alexander Technique (ACAT) from 1987-1998, where she helped train many teachers who practice today. She has traveled nationally and internationally to Europe, Asia and Mexico presenting the Alexander Technique in Master Class format, small group classes and private lessons. Ms. Waxman maintains a private practice on Manhattan’s Upper West Side and most recently in East Jewett, NY. From Master classes in classical flute in Tokyo and Osaka, to massage therapists in Ohio, physical therapists at New York Hospital, dressage riders out in Long Island and singers at the Metropolitan Opera, Ms. Waxman continues to work in group and individual lessons ranging from performing artists and the general public. www.annewaxman.com
Contact Riverside Initiative for the Alexander Technique