John Richard Laher, one of the foremost Alexander Technique teachers of today, became a teacher of the Technique in 1980. He had always been fascinated by F M Alexander, who was his great uncle, and grew up hearing all about his eminent relative and his work. His mother had received lessons from Alexander when she was a child.
John’s first love was the arts, and he worked in a variety of jobs in the theatre and bookselling. He eventually decided to train to be an Alexander teacher himself while he was working at RADA, and he taught the Technique at the National Theatre. Keen to keep his teaching close to the original, he received his training from Walter and Dilys Carrington, who had, in turn, been taught by Alexander at the first school he set up in London. John continued to seek out teachers who had been Alexander’s first followers in London: Irene Tasker, Marjorie Barlow, Margaret Goldie and Peggy Williams. Experienced teachers of the Technique now come to John, who is known for passing on the Technique just as Alexander would have wished.
For over 20 years John has taught the Technique to hundreds of pupils from his home in Covent Garden. Covent Garden is in the heart of London’s Theatreland, and a good proportion of John’s pupils have been actors, singers, dancers and musicians, many of them internationally known.
These artists are trained to understand how correct use of their bodies contributes to their abilities to work to their highest potential, yet John does not only work with performers. He has worked with people with health problems, such as bad backs, sciatica, migraine, arthritis, polio, strokes, digestive problems and high blood pressure, among many others. He has been instrumental in transforming the quality of his pupils’ lives.