• Up From Down Under

TO BE PUBLISHED 25 SEPTEMBER 2017.

PRE-PUBLICATION OFFER: £15.00 (which will be despatched 22 September). From 25 September: £17.95.


This pioneering book provides the background history to F. M. ­Alexander’s life in Australia from 1869 to 1904, and to the origins of the ­Alexander Technique. It provides an account of the historical, social, and cultural context in which Alexander grew up, worked, and made his discoveries.

Alexander himself provided little of his own history and so it has taken the research of dedicated historians such as Rosslyn McLeod to trace his family history and provide the background to Alexander’s life, first in Tasmania and later in Melbourne and Sydney.

Alexander’s grandparents were transported convicts from Wiltshire, the grandfather arriving in Tasmania in 1831. They eked out a bare existence from farming in a harsh environment in North-Western Tasmania. A generation later F. M. Alexander was born in 1869 to a blacksmith and farmer. The characteristics of independence and self-sufficiency were to influence him in his discovery and development of the Alexander Technique.

After a number of temporary jobs, having started work at 16, he took up reciting as a career around 1893. It was in Melbourne that he started developing his technique. Following the successful solution to his voice problems he continued his reciting and acting career, but increasingly gave lessons in his ‘vocal and respiratory’ technique, which developed into what is now known as the F. M. Alexander Technique.

Rosslyn McLeod has gathered a rich picture of F. M. Alexander’s family, and his early life and career in Australia.

First published in 1994 this new edition contains additional information, pictures and appendices;

Appendix I: F. M. Alexander’s Autobiographical Sketch
Appendix II: List of Poems FM recited
Appendix III: A Selection of Poems FM recited
Appendix IV: The Dream of Matthias the Burgomaster
Appendix V: 1902 prospectus for the Sydney Dramatic and Operatic Conservatorium
Appendix VI: Self-Reliance and Perseverance

Book Specifications
Author/Editor Rosslyn McLeod
Binding. Pages. Year. Paperback. 2017. 240 pages.
ISBN 978-0-9954911-6-8
Publication History First Edition: July 1994 by Rosslyn McLeod. Second Printing: October 1994. Second Edition: January 1995 by STAT Books. Third Edition: May 1995 by Rosslyn McLeod.

Up From Down Under

  • Brands Mouritz
  • Product Code: MCL017PE4
  • Availability: In Stock
  • £15.00