Teresa graduated in 2005 with an Honors Bachelor of Music Degree from the Cork School of Music. A keen orchestral musician, she started playing first with Wexford Sinfonia, and went on to become a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland and the Cork Symphony Orchestra among others. With these ensembles she has had the experience of accompanying renowned soloists including Nigel Kennedy, Tasmin Little and Evelyn Glennie. She has participated in many orchestral tours abroad including Germany, Holland, Denmark and Finland and is now a regular staff member on the NYOI residential courses. As well as double bass, Teresa also plays piano and has been teaching individual lessons and working as a grade exam accompanist for 10 years.
In 2008 she moved to Galway to join the Alexander Technique teacher training course, and graduated as a fully qualified teacher in December 2011. Her main interest is in helping musicians with all aspects of performance, including stage fright and conditions such as RSI. Always keen to keep up further learning, Teresa has also just completed a Foundation Certificate in Counselling and Psychotherapy Skills with Galway Counselling Studies.
"I first came across the Alexander Technique on a residential course with the National Youth Orchestra in 2002, and subsequently started individual lessons. Being a double bass player as well as a pianist (and not a tall one at that!), I had a lot of discomfort, including frequent pins and needles across my shoulders as well as pain in my forearms and wrists. The pressure of a degree in piano performance meant that often I would spend hours practising without taking care to warm up at all, not paying any attention to what I was doing with my body but instead just focusing on the notes on the page. With the bass I had the added disadvantage of the sheer size of it and the struggle of simply playing the instrument without feeling like I was fighting to hold it up! Sometimes I could only play for five minutes at a time before I had to stop and take a break, as it felt like my bow hand was seizing up. I thought at the time that I had no choice, that it was something I just had to put up with, as part of being a musician.
Since learning to apply the technique however, I have completely changed the way I play. Now I am aware of tension as it happens, so I am able to get rid of it before it causes pain. I can now stand to play the bass - something I found almost impossible before without discomfort - even for a whole two hour concert, without any problem. The performance anxiety that I used to suffer from is no longer an issue for me. I am now able to apply the Alexander Technique to all aspects of my life, which has made me an altogether much happier person. I've learned that I'm the one in control of my body, not the other way around. As a musician, I have discovered that the less I try to 'get it right', the better I play, and the more the music 'plays itself'. As a teacher of the technique, I would love to share this knowledge I have gained and help others to achieve their full potential."