So, here's a bit of a fun post. What is the link between Frederick Matthias Alexander, founder of the Alexander Technique, to Jim Morrison, lead singer with 1960s psychedelic rock band The Doors?
Jim Morrison, 1943 - 1971 and Frederick Matthias Alexander, 1869 - 1955
The answer is this man, Aldous Huxley, 1894 - 1963.
Aldous Huxley, who most people know as the author of "Brave New World" had lessons with Alexander. In a great article about the relationship between the two men, which you can find here, Robert Rickover writes: "Huxley was very tall and awkward and subject to fatigue, insomnia and a weak stomach. He was deathly afraid to speak in public. By the time he met Alexander, he was virtually bed-ridden, reduced to writing lying down with his typewriter resting on his chest. The lessons he had from Alexander enabled him to resume his normal activities and live in good health for another quarter century. He was so impressed with Alexander’s work that he referred to it several times in his later writings and even made Alexander a character in one of his novels. After having lessons with Alexander, Huxley wrote: “The Alexander Technique gives us all things we have been looking for in a system of physical education: relief from strain due to maladjustment, and constant improvement in physical and mental health. We cannot ask for more from any system; nor, if we seriously desire to alter human beings in a desirable direction, can we ask any less.”
Later in life, Huxley experimented with the psychedelic drug mescaline, and went on to write "The Doors of Perception" in 1953, from which the rock band took their name.
So there you go! The Alexander Technique to Jim Morrison in one step. Many thanks to Gerry Foley, fellow Alexander Teacher and graduate of the Constructive Teaching Centre, for first introducing me to these facts.