Master class

Master Class with Evangeline Benedetti (II/V)

Alexander Technique 2: Squat-Sitting

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Evangeline Benedetti — Teacher, cellist

Eli Levi — Cellist

Danielle Akta — Cellist

Program notes

In this five-part series of master classes, the acclaimed cellist Evangeline Benedetti coaches Eli Levi and Danielle Akta through the basics of the Alexander Technique, focusing on posture, movement, and process toward a more centered, grounded, and sustainable method of making music.

Developed at the end of the 19th century by an Australian actor seeking to improve posture, breathing, endurance, and vocal projection, the Alexander Technique was designed to eliminate the stress and tension provoked by long Shakespearean declamations onstage. It has since been adapted to suit the daily needs and difficulties of multiple disciplines, from artistic pursuits to athletes and the health-conscious.

In 1967, Evangeline Benedetti was invited by Leonard Bernstein himself to join the New York Philharmonic, the first female cellist and the second tenured woman. She remained an active and integral member for more than 40 years, playing in nearly thousands of concerts, recordings, and television productions (including the renowned Young People’s Concerts conducted by Bernstein). She taught for 20 years at the Manhattan School of Music and is a highly demanded master clinician and guest artist. She currently lives in New York.

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