My rambling thoughts on recent teachings…

via My rambling thoughts on recent teachings…

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My rambling thoughts on recent teachings…

Barbara Mahler MR 3-18-19 - 184546 - CREDIT DAVID GONSIER (2)photo: David Gonsier …Performance as part of the Movement Research Presenting Series 3/19/19 ..¨In Bundled Postures¨ loosely inspired by Eadweard Muybridge´s motiion photography

I have been teaching a lot, and therefore learning a lot about the body, about connecting, about relating, about moving. Without teaching I myself would probably no longer be interested in moving, especially  in the subtle, and expressive ways I love because the journey then, as a solo artist, would be too deep to go alone.

From some of my workshops this past year I have written about some of my experiences. Most are directly connected to and inspired by the particular group of people I was working with.

Here are some of my random thoughts….

Some of the hardest things to do in a short period of time is to change the way one thinks about how they should ¨look¨, what ¨good alignment is¨, what does it mean to ¨let go¨,; how to integrate  large amounts of information, both on a body and an intellectual level; how to be confident in a process of not knowing, not fully understanding – to trust. .

How do we practice , especially alone, without over-analyzing, without worry;  using imagery, direction and patience to support the daily work. Regardless of the style, aesthetic, viewpoint, perspective, – it all takes practice that is thoughtful, and physically exploratory.

Align the bones, using thought /direction, and gravity, and the muscles, tissue, fascia will sort itself out over time, allowing a new structure to evolve. Change happens slowly, over time, and can happen so slowly that by the time we realize there has been a shift, it can seem sudden,-sparked by one minute, one hour, one movement, one class although in reality change is slow , and non-linear.

Sensations, small aches, pains, soreness are fleeting experiences that come and go. They are seductive at times, drawing our attention away from the simplicity and steadiness of our practice, potentially overriding the work we do with the body structure. The skeleton itself has no real sensation.

All too often  these sensations, feelings, became the base upon which we place our attention.  These experience are important, as they can keep us excited and interested but they do not necessarily lend themselves to deep change, to a deep knowing of  who we are; ourselves and the way we move in the world in our bodies .

Think of, imagine the movement. Refrain, as best you an, to fit everything you feel into a linear container of right and wrong, of black and white. Learning is a process, revealing itself over time with patience and practice. Sometimes change happens and cannot be simply explained, or intellectually understood but clearly, it has occurred.

Let the body learn. Use information to relax the mind, for the body cannot be directed by thoughts, but it can be directed through imagery, movement and breath.

Now more than 40 years ago, it is understood that the mind and body are not separate, and practiced imagery/direction creates change by helping to override the habitual movement patterns.

I love the work i teach, i practice, for I want to continue to improve as a teacher, bodyworker/healer/helper, dancer, person.

video from NDA Performance Mix 33 at University Settlement Speyer Hall by Jacob Hiss

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What´s been happening!

via What´s been happening!

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What´s been happening!

It been a very fruitful year….travels to Chile in October 2018, teaching in Santiago, and choreographing/performing in Conception, as part of the BIOBIO Festival. This event was characterized by warm, passionate dancers, who embraced my choreography and after 4 days of rehearsal, owning it deliciously on stage. I performed my solo  ¨ ARriveD ¨….Mahler’s work drew us into her introspective world…her movements were, at first, static with accents of s hand, head or foot slamming against the surface. Mahlerś was movement that harkened back to an earlier era of Modern Dance,performed with great skill and attention” Jeff Slayton.

20180612_182318 (1)

I was joined by teacher, choreographer, dancer Marcela Ortiz de Zarate.

October 2019 promises to bring another fabulous experience at the Bio Bio Festival61200431_10157183505899720_5893717121875050496_n


April 2019 brought travels to Vienna, Austria and Berlin, Germany, for their annual Easter Workshops, where I taught workshops in Klein Technique, at TanzQuarier, Wien,   and Tanzbrik, Berlin , which shows hope of a Easter workshop return 2020!



June presented itself with performances at Soltice, and NewDanceAlliance´s 33 anniversary festival. I performed a solo entitled ¨In Bundled Postures¨, which can also be seen in various venues of the 5 QueensboroDanceFestival – all over QUEENS!


An Alphabet of Limbs Copyphoto¨:Christopher

photo: David GonsierBarbara Mahler MR 3-18-19 - 184546 - CREDIT DAVID GONSIER (2)

And late June/early July brought my forth Klein Technique, advanced and beginner, workshops in Taipei…..with HORSE DANCE THEATER.

I love those people.!!

more writing coming soon.x


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What’s new this summer?

20160702_115654 (1)I have just returned from working with HORSE dance Theater, Taipai, my third visit in three years. Plans are already in the works for summer 2018 – we always work at around the same time every year ..Mid June to early July.

Every year has so far been exciting, different and full of fun and new friends. This year included a ZB1 class, and more zero balancing sessions than ever before -Klein/Mahler and Zero Balancing fit so well together. The quality of the week – “Lightness”

What;s next?

Summer MELT!! with Movement Research- July 16-20…1-3, the basic stretch and placement class with theory and movement weaving together.

Ongoing classes with Movement Research Tuesdays Thursdays and Fridays 10-12..check class calendar for specifics–through August 18

Zero Balancing Sessions…Contact me for details…in Manhattan and in Queens



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Klein Technique in Minneapolis coming soon!!!

Minneapolis! coming soon

Hola! my return to friends and Klein technique teaching and zero balancing sessions take place Friday evening – Sunday afternoon May 18-20.  Theory, Practice, space and time to integrate.

Contact Jennifer Arave on Facebook event Klein Technique w Barbara Mahler or

Workshop – Friday evening, Saturday 11-430, and Sunday 11-3

Zero Balancing Sessions are still available mainly on Saturday evening May 19.

check calendar for contact

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  1. 17358576_10155190254199720_1042633709424620787_oBarbara Mahler is a longtime and active member of the New York Dance Community  dancer,  choreographer, performer, movement educator and zero Balancing practitioner and faculty (1989). She has been teaching for above 30 years and is instrumental in the development and dissemination of Klein Technique. She was associate director of the Susan Klein School of Dance from 1983-2004, building on her studies of this technique since 1978. Barbara was a Movement Research artist-in-residence from 2001-03, and 2006-2008;  a faculty member at Movement Research since 2005. She teaches worldwide in a variety of contexts, in ongoing education programs, festivals and open workshops. As a choreographer, she works with subtle and complex movements, with the themes of time and architecture. Her solo work has been shown in New York City – St. Mark’s Church, Abrons Art Center, with New Dance Alliance; as the RAD festival  Michigan, and in Santa Barbara,CA with ARTBARK International.  She received a BA from Hunter College under the direction of Dorothy Vislocky and her MFA from UWM-Milwaukee 2008. \

    BKSD_2-3   click her for flyer pdf

    20180220_150642 (1)JOIN ME, with dancers Jamie Graham and Trina Mannino, choreographers and MEGHAN FREDERICK/ETHAN WOODS APRIL 27 and 28 at Brooklyn Studios for DANCE…a shared evening of works, works in process      8pm

$20  tickets 
Brooklyn Studios for Dance
210 Lafayette Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11238

BkSD is pleased to announce a shared evening of dance by choreographers Barbara Mahler and Meghan Frederick/Ethan Woods.

Mahler’s work embodies sparse, architectural elements, often noted as “moving sculpture.” Capturing underlying emotional tones that are kinesthetically experienced by the viewer, Barbara Mahler offers two new pieces in this shared evening. First, a solo, performed and choreographed by Barbara Mahler, will be followed by the duet “when we ARrived, performed by her longtime dancers Jamie Graham and Trina Mannino. The duet is a stark portrait of kinship and intimacy, reflecting the sense of support that women in our culture are lending to one another. Both dances will be performed in silence.  “. . . Mahler’s (work) drew us into her introspective world . . . Her movements were, at first, static with accents of a hand, head or foot slamming against the surface. Mahler’s was movement that harkened back to an earlier era of Modern Dance, performed with great skill and attention.” – Jeff Slayton of See Dance.

Mahler’s dances are created with the support of BkSD as a 2018 artist in residence, Lift-Off, a group feedback series led by Karen Bernard and NDA, and Movement Research, which supports the artist by engaging her as a teaching artist since 2005-present.

‘no such thing’, a collaborative duet performed by Meghan Frederick (dancer) and Ethan Woods (musician), utilizes egalitarian relationships between Ethan’s and Meghan’s bodies and sound-making capabilities to research the role of performance as spiritual practice under late capitalist Trumpism.       Created over the last 10 months, between North Carolina and New York City, in a shipping container in Red Hook, Brooklyn, and at/with support from the Dragon’s Egg (CT), ‘no such thing’ is an eerily hilarious dance, featuring alien abductions, radio jingles, Mork and Mindy sweaters, and lots and lots of shapes. Join the artists on this shiny, failed quest for enlightenment, or at least something that feels equally sparkly.

Launched in April 2015, Brooklyn Studios for Dance lives within the historic Cadman Congregational Church in Clinton Hill, Brooklyn. Inspired by a shared reverence for gathering space, the church congregation and the dance community entered a partnership to share a facility. The mission of BkSD is to a serve the professional dance community while at the same time building a culture of local engagement that responds to the interests of both communities.

Since officially opening its doors, BkSD has offered a variety of classes, workshops, residencies and performances to the professional and non-professional community. This past year, BkSD engaged over 1000 participants and over 150 teachers and artists.

BkSD was initiated by Pepper Fajans who led a renovation effort of the church’s 1920s-era gymnasium and developed a programming structure for the organization. Together with a volunteer community of dancers, and with the generous help of a founding team, Fajans transformed the 30’ x 60’ column-free space into a vibrant dance studio, with a sprung Marley floor. BkSD is Directed Pepper Fajans.

For Tickets: Eventbrite ticket link:
For More Information:

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Klein Technique w Barbara Mahler

Join me Every Tuesday and Thursday

Klein Technique aka Stretch and Placement w Movement Research Tuesday and Thursday 10-12 Eden’s Expressway. 537 Broadway avec moi

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Some Recent and Soon to come Adventures of Barbara!


photo by Reiko Yanagi

It has been a very fruitful and busy time! with travels to Taipei, with Horse Dance Company, June 2017, my second time, and returning again June 2018.


photo by Julie Lemberger

Tiny clip of “It OcCurs to mE” as part of the Movement Research at the Judson Church 25th Anniversary September 2016


I also returned to Santiago, Chile (October 2017), my third time in that beautiful city, this time as part of an annual festival of Somatic Practices curated by Marcela Ortiz.  Klein Technique is an extraordinaryily helpful and profound movement practice for all movers, which is everyone!  My annual workshop in Minneapolis (since 1992) takes place the Weekend of December 9 and there are still a few spaces available, and zero Balancing sessions can tbe had as well.  Click Link below

mahler december 2017 flyer-poster (2)

There also has been the creation and performances of a new solo, “De sHelvEd”- and a duet still growing with Trina Maninno and Jamie Graham. Our performances took place at the University Settlement House in Manhattan in June, the Queens Museum in July, The Secret Theater in October as part of the QueensBoro Dance Festival, at Movement Research’s weekly open performance, and at Dixon Place November 28.   Berlin and the Easter Workshop happen early April, and here in NYC  we have THE Show at the beautiful Brooklyn Studios for Dance – the space is  AMAZING!!!  in April 2018.

Classes continue through December 22, 2017 and we begin again Mid January, with an additional movement class one evening per week at BKSD. Check the on line calendar on the main page of web site.

Some student comments:

A week at IDA in London:  Barbara has been amazing. Her knowledge and intelligence is beyond belief. The technique is so fundamental, and her pedagogic approach towards teaching… can’t find the right words but it is so incredible but subtle that it is rather invisible. This is incredible because it is there. I felt (having come 4 out of 5 days) that everybody in the class learned something but not in their heads, on their bodies, including myself on this.

I have certainly been challenged and confronted, but in an environment that allowed me to take the time, space, energy to try things out, without needing to learn, or fulfill expectations, or worry about gaining anything, and as a result I feel all these things happened!

I gained a huge amount, a re-connection to my dancing and moving body. A feeling of it’s potential. I go away with a rich resource to practice and practice. I feel better, positive.

The workshop was extremely interesting and physically engaging. The simple movements/patterns with profound and complex feedback. I feel I will be processing over the next few days, weeks…I would like to do more with Barbara.

“One word – Transformation. Traveling to a place that is old and new. Old in the sense of feeling movement as I did before a hip injury and new in the sense that your class has opened a new way of feeling about my place in the world.”

“One of the biggest ideas I’m taking away from Barbara’s classes is the idea of options-for-moving. In the last few years I was thinking a lot about range-of-motion in the sense of how dancers endeavor to move with a broader range-of-motion. When I began taking Barbara’s classes, I was thinking about and focusing on how I could increase my own range-of-motion. Btu when I heard her talk about options-for-moving, I started thinking about movement differently. While I continue to investigate range-of-motion, Barbara’s idea about options-for-moving opened up ideas about options-for-identity, options for moving through life and building a way to be.”12107268_10100688318296639_1871288470071084891_n.jpg

I bid you good holidays, health, and especially joy.






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Sharing w you again this lovely article.!

Barbara Mahler: How I Teach Klein Technique

Posted on January 31, 2017 by Rachel Rizzuto, Dance Teacher Magazine February 2017

Barbara Mahler’s Klein Technique class always begins the same way: Students slowly roll down until they’re completely folded over—and stay there for about half an hour. This, dancers say, is where tiny miracles happen. There’s a Zen-like calm so strong it’s palpable, as Mahler weaves through her students, gently inviting them to “bring attention to the hamstrings” or cueing the “weight of the head to pull on the tail.”

To a novice, a Klein Technique class might appear monotonous or even strange. But “it’s a way to re-educate and facilitate change—it’s knowledge for people to help themselves move better, with less pain and more ease,” says Mahler, who has been teaching it for 34 years. Klein Technique was developed by Susan Klein in the 1970s as a response to her own injuries. Part somatic practice, part movement technique, its repetitive, slow-moving approach helps students realign and repattern their bodies, leading to the dissolution of bad habits, a new range of motion and injury prevention.

A latecomer to dance as an undergraduate at Hunter College, Mahler found herself plagued by injuries. “I was always having back problems,” she says. Then she found Susan Klein’s studio and noticed a dramatic transformation in her body. “I realized I wasn’t in pain and my back was getting better,” says Mahler. “I was learning how to understand myself.” She quickly became a devotee and eventually a certified teacher.

For many modern dancers in New York City, Mahler’s class is a source of revelation. “I grew up doing lots of ballet, so when I went to college for modern dance, I was constantly told to be more grounded and give in to my weight,” says Trina Mannino, a student of Mahler’s for two years. “It was in the hanging over that I felt this surrender in my body. It started to shift for me.”

The beginning of class isn’t the only time revelations occur. Near the end, when Mahler noticed her students going from a fetal position on the floor to a spread-eagled X-position by initiating from the feet, she suggested they pair up and try moving from a different part of their bodies to see if that led to any discoveries. While one partner lay on the ground, the other placed their hands on their partner’s trochanters (the two bony protuberances at the top of each thigh bone) for tactile encouragement. Afterward, Mahler had them walk around the room to feel the difference in their bodies.

The change was immediately visible: The side of the body that had been touched appeared longer and more relaxed. “I feel like my legs are walking me!” said one student, clearly surprised.

That surprise is what Mahler hopes her students leave class with. “I want them to have a different experience of being in their body,” she says. “And that information is something you take away and apply to other classes.” DT

Barbara Mahler has been teaching Klein Technique since 1983. She was on faculty at the Klein School of Movement from 1983 to 2002; today she teaches at Movement Research and Gibney Dance Center in NYC. She has a BA in dance from Hunter College and an MFA from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. Her choreography has been presented by Danspace Project, Brooklyn Arts Exchange and Dixon Place in New York.

Trina Mannino
is a professional dancer who has been Mahler’s student since 2014.

Photos by Kyle Froman

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