During the pandemic, Katie presented a workshop via Zoom to help our Youth Orchestra and Junior String Ensemble students. During this time when all learning was online, Katie’s calm encouragement helped students to not only relax with their instruments but also to get “unstuck” from their computer screens. It was just what we needed. The students soaked in the self-kindness and positivity that Katie exuded. I think it was a new concept to these high-achievers to give themselves permission to take a “No-Go” moment before tackling something difficult. It was great to have Katie’s virtual workshop in the middle of a very challenging year for our students.
—Karen Dusek, Managing Director, Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes
For the 2021 Piano Pedagogy Workshop at Nazareth College, Katie was featured as one of our guest clinicians, where she provided two Alexander Technique sessions for participating music teachers. Her sessions were warmly delivered, well-organized, and creatively engaging. She tailored her sessions to be beneficial for both the participating music teachers themselves as well as their students. Her calm and inviting demeanor created a safe space for exploration of concepts, and encouraged participation from everyone. I give Katie my most enthusiastic recommendation as a workshop presenter!
—Jacob Ertl, Coordinator of Keyboard Studies, Associate Professor of Piano, Nazareth College, Rochester New York
“Katie showed me right from the beginning that I was indeed capable of moving my body much more freely, and above all, painlessly (I went to her because of excruciating arm pain). She possesses a wealth of knowledge and experience which inspires trust; she is encouraging and patient and very kind; she focuses on solutions, not problems, which creates an optimistic and supportive atmosphere that is perfect for learning.”
“Initially, I came to Katie to work through the pain and difficulty that I experienced while playing clarinet after cervical spinal surgery. Using the Alexander Technique, I am able to help myself to less pain in all aspects of life. Katie is a most positive, kind and gentle person who has impressed me with her brilliant mind and smiling heart.”
—Deborah Jo Kummer
“We recently arranged and participated in a group session Katie led with our entire cello class. Experiencing her ability to get a group of college aged pupils to let go pre-conceptions and try completely different sets of movements and sensations was truly inspiring. She has a wonderfully unassuming manner in working with pupils, which accompanies a tremendous ability to focus on the person she is working with. All of the pupils in our studio of 19 cellists want her to return, and several have worked with her since privately in preparing for recitals and other performances.
“In short, Katie is a marvel, and a wonderful resource to any musician trying to find more freedom and ease in their work!”
—Steven Doane, Professor of Cello, Eastman School of Music, Visiting Professor of Cello, Royal Academy of Music, London
“Working with Katie Fittipaldi has changed my relationship to music both physically and emotionally. When I first started with Katie I had only been playing the cello as an adult learner for about two years, yet I had already developed right arm pain while playing due to poor positioning. Katie’s suggestions on position changes were right on the money. Her gentle yet creative way of explaining how to use my body more efficiently helped to speed my recovery. Now I can play without pain and my sound is much better!
“As a child I never felt quite good enough and so music lessons became more about what the teacher wanted than what I wanted. Katie’s gentle, playful and yet persistent style of teaching helped me to rediscover what I personally love about making music. She has integrated both mind and body for a much healthier, whole ‘me’!”
—Dr. Leila Kirdani, www.drleila.com
“Katie Fittipaldi is an enthusiastic, thoughtful and articulate practitioner and teacher of the Alexander Technique. She has done many presentations for my students and me at the Eastman School of Music and we have been the beneficiaries of her thoughtful concepts and methodology. As a professional cellist and music teacher, Katie is particularly able to relate to the challenges of the performing musician.”
—Mark Kellogg, Associate Professor of Trombone, Euphonium, and Chamber Music; Eastman School of Music, Principal Trombone; Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra
“During our extensive work together, I experienced Katie’s sensitive and guiding hands-on skill. Her work is engaging and leads students to explore new ideas with persistence and humor. Katie Fittipaldi is a first-rate Alexander teacher.”
“When playing the bass, I used to think mostly about my arms and hands, but Alexander Technique has helped me to be more aware of my whole body which allows me to be more at ease and comfortable with the bass. The Alexander Technique has helped me notice and release unwanted tension in my body and it has also given me tools to deal with stress while staying calm and present.
“Katie’s personality is really apt for this kind of work. As we work in the lesson, I feel comfortable letting her gently move my arms, legs and head. After our lessons, I always feel excited and energized. I highly recommend Alexander Technique lessons with Katie!”
—Gaelen McCormick, Bassist, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra; Instructor, Nazareth College; Eastman Community Music School; Roberts Wesleyan College
“When Katie has presented the Alexander Technique at the Eastman School of Music she has been able to engage students and faculty alike through her friendly and positive approach. In her teaching, she draws from her experience as an Alexander Technique teacher, as well as her background as a musician, student, and cello teacher. Katie’s presentation of Alexander Technique makes the technique relevant to everyday life as well as to performance situations. Her practical hands-on explorations easily demonstrate AT principles so that even when presenting to a larger group she is able to create individual experiences that students can put into practice immediately. Katie’s work has been very well received by the Eastman community and is always in demand. “
—Susanne Callan-Harris PT, MS, LLCC, Callan-Harris Physical Therapy, www.chptusa.com
“I have observed Katie Fittipaldi giving Alexander Technique lessons to my daughter on numerous occasions. I am impressed by the atmosphere of quiet concentration she is able to create, her approach to engaging the student in self-reflection without judgement, and her ability to encourage curiosity, trust and a receptivity to change in her students. I have seen a profound difference in my daughter’s posture and sense of her body after an Alexander Technique session, and realize its benefits for musicians: her sound quality and tone is clearer and more resonant, her playing looks and sounds less effortful, and her bow hold and fingering is less labored. As a movement educator who has worked in different somatic techniques with musicians on body awareness and developing a three-dimensional sense of alignment and movement, I know how valuable a holistic body-mind connection is for musicians; as a dancer who has had Alexander sessions, I know firsthand how Alexander Technique assists dancers in letting go of inefficient movement patterns and brings an awareness of new choices and new possibilities.”
—Cynthia J. Williams, Dance Department; Hobart and William Smith Colleges
“It seems all too common for instrumentalists to ignore their body when they pick up their instruments, causing an unfortunate disconnection between body and mind. For this I recommend an alternative… The Alexander Technique!
“During our lessons, Katie has shown me ways to re-connect with my body using an approach that has been both fascinating and fun. In a gentle yet sophisticated way, Katie guides me in the lesson so I can discover for myself how to integrate my body with my mind as I play. Through this process, I have been able to identify points of tension in my body, of which I had not been aware even existed. A startling revelation which has improved my playing quite a bit! I hope many performers can experience the powerful results obtainable through the Alexander Technique.”
—Stephen Sas, Double bass, NYC
“I would highly recommend Katie as an Alexander Technique teacher, having benefited immensely from her incredible patience, knowledge, and genuine interest in her students’ welfare and development. Katie has helped me become conscious of various habits that have prevented me from reaching my fullest potential as a singer. Alexander lessons have also informed my yoga practice and enrich the quality of my everyday life. I recommend Alexander Technique study with Katie to musical colleagues, yogis, athletes, or anyone wishing to improve their quality of life.”
—Julia Natoli, Bachelor of Arts, Vocal Performance, Nazareth College
“Studying Alexander Technique as I prepared for college auditions helped me learn to focus more clearly and move more comfortably even when I’m nervous. Now instead of clenching in response to a stressful situation I am more able to stay calm by releasing tension.
“Because injuries are so common among musicians, I feel extremely grateful to have studied Alexander Technique. Now when I am playing the cello, I am much more aware of my movements, so I notice when I am making a movement that is harmful. It is now much easier for me to catch myself doing a bad habit, such as raising my shoulders when I shift, and I feel that this awareness has helped me stay injury-free.”
—Rachel Mills, Cello Performance Major, Oberlin College
“I highly recommend Katie Fittipaldi as a teacher of the Alexander Technique. My daughters and I have experienced her teaching Alexander Technique in three settings, an Alexander Technique master class for cellists, a six week session of AT introductory group classes, and a series of private lessons for my daughter. Katie is very knowledgeable and is a good communicator. She has a gentle and gracious personality and truly cares about her students.
“The more I studied Alexander Technique, the more I was aware that the way I was sitting, standing, and sleeping was harmful and was causing headaches. As I experimented with releasing the extra tension in my neck, I noticed that I was having less headaches! My daughter and I are sold on the benefits of studying Alexander Technique and highly recommend it to anyone!”
—Virginia Mills, Violinist, Penfield Symphony Orchestra