Allyson Ford is a Feldenkrais Practitioner and holds a degree in Psychology with emphasis in chemistry and physics and is certified by the Feldenkrais Guild of North America following the completion of their 4-year program of additional study. She serves as adjunct faculty in the Professional Actors Training Program, teaching movement for performing artists at Chattanooga State Community College. Her husband, J. Kevin Ford is the U. C. Foundation Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga where he is also the Coordinator of the Graduate Music Program and teaches undergraduate and graduate conducting, graduate choral literature and directs three choruses. He holds Bachelor’s degrees in choral and instrumental music education from UTC and the MME and Ph.D. in Choral Music Education from the Florida State University where he was a student of Rodney Eichenberger and André Thomas. He is Past President of the Tennessee American Choral Directors Association and holds membership in the National Association for Music Education, the College Music Society and the International Federation for Choral Music. Choruses under his direction have performed in state and national conferences of ACDA and NAfME. With the UTC Chamber Singers, he has recorded the complete choral works of noted African American Spiritual composer, Roland Carter. 

ALLYSON FORD & KEVIN FORD, E.U.A

Fine tuning non-verbal gesture and building choral sound through Feldenkrais 

One of the more challenging things to deal with as a conductor and as a teacher of conducting is to break old habits of movement.  If that habitual movement triggers poor vocal technique or musicality in our singers then it is often beneficial to alter the gesture.  We have found that judicial use of the Feldenkrais technique in working through conducting gestural issues makes the transition from old habit to new intentional movement much easier. 

This joint session with husband and wife team Kevin and Allyson Ford will take you through exercises that address common problems in conducting and provide a more mindful approach to learning a gestural vocabulary that guides singers toward a tone more in line with the conductor’s intent.  Activities will include singing, conducting, and participating in group seated Feldenkrais exercises.

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