The MBMS Integrated Musician Certificate Program
For Mid & Late Career Music Professionals
(Instrumentalists, Singers, Conductors & Music Teachers)
A 9-Month Deep Dive into Your Artistry, Your Self & the Alexander Technique
The next cohort will start September 2023
(By application only.)Apply Now
“This program helped me to gain confidence in my inner intelligence, my innate ability to make music, and my desire to help other singers of all ages and levels attain a more joyful, playful way to approach vocalizing.”
“It has been my greatest joy to be gifted this holistic way of singing and to now have the opportunity to offer that gift to my students. I have been amazed at the discoveries and growth I see in them. Studying more about the complexity of our anatomical structures has helped me to understand how our design affects my ability to vocalize. Being introduced to the Alexander Technique has helped me to realize how habits of interference inhibit my ability to sing with ease. I have found a way to return to the joyful ease of singing. My hope is to help light the way for other singers who long to follow a similar path.”
Tiffany Cadenhead, Program Graduate
Professional Singer & Voice Teacher in Austin, TX
What is the MBMS Integrated Musician Certificate Program?
MBMS Founder & Director Peter Jacobson here.
Thank you for your interest in the Integrated Musician Certificate Program (IMCP), a continuing education program that offers in-depth online and live training for music professionals who want to learn how to use the Alexander Technique (and other related fields of study) to improve the quality of their music-making and their life.
Since launching this program 5 years ago, it’s been so exciting to watch program participants make new and often unexpected discoveries about what’s possible with their artistry. I am extremely proud of our program graduates and how they have discovered the most expansive, healthy and creative version of themselves through this program.
The Integrated Musician Certificate Program is one of the few programs in the world that provides long-term, in-depth training in the fields of music education, anatomy, human potential and the Alexander Technique.
This program is geared towards people who fit into one of two categories:
- Vocal or Instrumental Musicians – who care deeply about optimizing their artistic expression and want to realize their full potential as an artist. (Note: You do not have to be a professional musician to join this program. However, it is essential that you are committed to significant growth and change.)
- Music Teachers & Conductors – who are looking for an opportunity to focus on your own (sometimes neglected) artistry while also learning powerful, practical ideas you can share with your students and ensemble members.
This program is designed for musicians who:
- Are looking for a program that provides an in-depth opportunity for self-discovery and artistic growth.
- Have a keen interest in going deeper into the Alexander Technique (and related fields of study.)
This program is about supporting you to give your musical gifts generously and freely to the world.
At 160 hours over 9 months, this program is rigorous. However, it is designed with busy people in mind. Roughly half of the program takes place online and the other half happens through live, in-person intensives. This makes the learning available to a variety of lifestyles, situations and schedules.
This page contains important information about the curriculum, how the program works, and reports from previous students. If you are excited by what you see on this page, I invite you to fill out an application or reach out to me personally so we can talk further.
How The Program Will Benefit You
This program will benefit many areas of your life:
- Get full access to your artistic potential
- Discover creative new ways of expressing yourself
- Experience natural relief from tension, pain and stress
- Learn how your body is designed to move most efficiently and naturally
Your Practicing & Performing
- Learn how to increase your focus, concentration and self-awareness
- Learn lasting and effective solutions to deal with performing-related fear and anxiety
Your Health & Well-Being
- Enjoy greater vitality and energy
- Learn how to find peace of mind and calm in your teaching and life
- Help your students solve body and voice tension problems more effectively
- Experience more ease and spaciousness in your teaching
The program includes:
- A rigorous and practical curriculum
- A warm and nurturing learning environment
- A supportive and non-competitive community
- High standards of excellence
- Engaging and meaningful discussions
- Experiential learning activities and movement explorations
- Respect for each person’s unique individual journey
- Strong emphasis on personal and artistic growth
- Support and accountability from colleagues
Student Success Story
2020 Program Graduate
The Program Curriculum
Module 1: The Alexander Technique for Musicians
Learn & Embody the Core Principles of the MBMS Approach
The Alexander Technique has been used by performing artists for well over a century to access their full creative and artistic potential.
In this initial module, you will learn about the 7 core principles of the Alexander Technique and their practical application to your music-making and life. Those principles are: wholeness, primary control, non-doing, inhibition, direction, ends and means, and use affects functioning.
You will also learn how to apply the 4 S.E.L.T. Practices – slowing down, experimenting, listening and trusting – to your music-making and teaching.
By the end of this module, you will have powerful new tools to intelligently solve body problems as well as improve the quality of your music-making at any moment.
Module 1 Learning Resources
- The Use of the Self by F.M. Alexander
- Select articles from the literature on the Alexander Technique
“This module was extremely useful to me as a musician, and in thinking about how I could go about changing what might not be most efficient in my own habitual use of my body. However I loved thinking more from a teaching point of view as well, in particular: helping the student find the atlanto-occipital joint, the process of gathering information/observing, the importance of non-judgmental listening, and asking questions/being the voice that the student can hear during practice: What worked about this? What did you like about it?”
Professional Singer and Voice Teacher in New York City, NY
Module 2: How to Become a Highly-Skilled Musician
Learn How to Learn – The Most Important Skill of All
Philosopher John Dewey (a student of F.M. Alexander) said that the Alexander Technique, “…bears the same relation to education that education itself bears to all other human activities.”
In other words, the Alexander Technique is powerful tool that you can use to optimize your own learning, allowing you to become a more facile and effective learner of any skill or activity.
In this module, you will learn a conscious and constructive approach to learning in which how you do something is as important as what you do, dramatically increasing the effectiveness of your practice time. It's an approach to learning that embraces exploration, curiosity and play versus an anxious need to constantly fix problems (and is ultimately more effective and more fun!).
You will also learn the fundamental principles of music learning, which are based on the learning behavior of expert musicians:
- Positive mental attitude
- Listening with discernment
- Methodical mindfulness
- Practicing with the listener in mind
- Experimentation & Play
- Musical Problem-Solving
By the end of this module, you will have skills and tools to be a more effective music learner and practitioner, which will allow you to progress faster than before (without having to push or hurt yourself).
Module 2 Learning Resources
- The Elements of Skill: A Conscious Approach to Learning by Theodore Dimon, Jr.
- Excerpts from Intelligent Music Teaching by Robert Duke
“This was a really useful module for me, as I was able to realize that I can chunk my practice time into something useful regardless of how much time I have in a day, and it ‘counts’. I often placed a lot of pressure on myself to be super thorough in my practice and if I didn’t follow my own method, I would get upset with myself and then avoid practice altogether. For me, learning how to focus on the parts of a particular song or memorization that I’m finding difficult to get maximum results (the whole 80/20 principle), was HUGE.
I now practice something every day (based on my own priorities of what is coming up for me) and have developed pretty good habits in how to learn music. I no longer judge myself if I am not feeling well and can’t sing, but there is always something I can do to move myself forward as a singer, whether it be watching videos of great singers, reading, translating, thinking about dramatic intent and character or the nuggets of wisdom that my many teachers have instilled in me as a singer. I also find days where my voice isn’t feeling great, that I can speak rhythms, think about my coordination and do many other things that help me learn the music.”
Professional Singer in Ottawa, Canada
Module 3: The Musician's Body In Action
Dynamic Anatomy & The Moving, Musical Human Instrument
As a musician, your whole body is your instrument. The problem is many musician's bodies are working AGAINST them instead of FOR them. This module is a holistic, Alexander-informed way of looking at how your physical instrument is designed to move and perform with maximum efficiency and freedom.
Different than many anatomy courses that focus on learning the names of muscles and bones, in this module you will learn how to embody anatomical information through an exploration of eight activities and systems that make up the larger activity of singing:
- Standing & Balancing – The Upright Support System in Action
- Breathing – The Respiratory System & Torso in Action
- Phonating & Articulating – The Sound-Making System in Action
- Supporting & Swaying – The Legs in Action
- Playing & Interacting with an Instrument – The Arms in Action
- Performing – The Whole Self in Action
Each activity will be a doorway into a whole world of learning about human anatomy, physical design and easeful movement.
By the end of this module, you will have a more accurate body “map” which will allow for new-found freedom and ease in your sound production and open up new horizons in your artistry.
Module 3 Learning Resources
- How to Learn the Alexander Technique: A Manual for Students by Barbara & William Conable
- The Body in Motion: Its Evolution and Design by Theodore Dimon, Jr.
"This module has been a great exploration which can be summed up in one word: awareness. I have become aware of movements I have made my entire life and how wonderful and amazing our bodies are. I have greater awareness of my body, which has caused me to observe my habits related to how I stand, sleep, move, drive my car, take a walk and sing! I have found as I delve into this new way of thinking, or relearning my body map, that there so many more parts to it than I was aware. The body is truly an amazing design and I am excited to keep exploring!”
Jamey Ruiz McClellan
Professional Singer & Voice Teacher in Vancouver, Washington
Module 4: Essential Skills for Peak Performance
Learn the 7 Steps to Performing Confidence & Audition Success
Performing is one of the ultimate celebrations of life. And performing artists live to perform – there is nothing better than the "high" of performing for a live audience.
In most great performers you see the following traits:
- Magnetism – they draw the audience into a magical, musical world with their authentic and alive presence.
- Confidence – their assuredness comes from having a clear plan for success that has been thoroughly studied and rehearsed.
- Boldness – they aren't afraid to take risks and skate on the thrilling edge of failure and success.
The question is – can these qualities be learned and nurtured?
Though some people are natural born performers, anyone can grow into a great performer by developing a set of essential peak performance skills.
In this module, you will engage in an important inquiry process of how to train the human instrument to perform at our maximum potential on a consistent basis.
You will also learn how to create, develop and refine performance plans in your singing practice that will reliably support you to realize your goals and desires in any performing situation.
This module will be a culmination of the previous 4 modules and will focus on the 7 Steps to Performing Confidence & Audition Success.
By the end of this module, you will have the tools and skills to enjoy greater confidence, ease and expression in your musical performances.
Module 4 Learning Resources
- Indirect Procedures: A Musician's Guide to the Alexander Technique by Pedro de Alcantara
- The Art of Impossible: A Peak Performance Primer by Steven Kotler
“In this module, I feel like I finally started to feel like I maybe I know what I’m doing when I audition. (Imagine that!) Tapping into my desire to sing was a key step that I had been missing. Obviously, I knew that I loved singing, but that was never my main thought when I went to sing before a panel of judges. Renewing that desire, and realizing that I had a choice of whether or not to sing at all made it much more clear to me that this is what I want to be doing. When I allowed myself to feel that love and to truly want to communicate it, I actually enjoyed auditioning! Yes, auditioning can be frustrating, but like Alexander realized, “his desire was stronger than his frustrations.” Also, allowing myself to feel “performance readiness” rather than trying to shut that off has helped tremendously. Before, I had felt that nervousness and immediately thought that I shouldn’t feel that way and tried with all my might to not be nervous. Clearly, that doesn’t work. Starting to learn how to turn “performance anxiety” into “performance readiness” was pretty life-changing for me.”
Professional Singer & Voice Teacher in Annapolis, Maryland
Student Success Story
Mary Frances Lubahn
2019 Program Graduate
IMCP Level consists of 160 hours divided up in the following way:
1. Integrated Musician Classes (48 hours)
These online classes are the beating heart of the program. These classes will consist of discussion, explorations, activities and exercises designed to give you practical experience in using the Alexander Technique in your artistry and life. The longer class time (2 hours) will allow for us to go deeply into various topics and "nerd out" on them together.
2. MBMS Academy Classes (22 hours)
The MBMS Academy for Musicians is our online learning program for the general public. In MBMS Academy classes you get further experience in learning the core principles of MBMS Alexander work and whole body anatomy and how to integrate them into your own musical artistry. There will also be 3 masterclasses featuring special guest teachers offered throughout the year.
3. Live, In-Person Training (90 hours)
9 full days (3 x 3-day weekends) of live learning are required as part of Level I. These intensive learning experiences are designed to deepen the work you do in your online coursework with your course colleagues with the added benefit of touch communication, a powerful aspect of the Alexander Technique and the MBMS approach.
How Certification Works
Students who complete the program requirements will be awarded an official certificate of completion.
The certificate signifies that you possess a solid intellectual and practical understanding of the Alexander Technique and its application to music-making, practicing and performing.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This program does NOT certify you as a teacher of the Alexander Technique.
For those who want to train as a teacher of the Alexander Technique, this program is the precursor to the MBMS Pro Alexander Teacher Training Program. The 160 hours you earn in this program will be applied to the 1600 training hours of MBMS Pro. In other words, this program is 10% of the hours required to become an Alexander Technique teacher through The Mind Body Music School.
Student Success Story
2020 Program Graduate
The Program & Class Schedule
The program is divided into 4 x 6-week terms (plus a 3-week January term):
- Early Fall Term: September 11th – October 20th, 2023
- Late Fall Term: October 30th – December 15th, 2023 (no classes the week of November 20th)
- January Mini-Term: January 8th – January 26th, 2024
- Winter Term: February 5th – March 15th, 2024
- Spring Term: April 8th – May 17th, 2024
Integrated Musician Classes (Online)
These classes will meet on Saturdays from 10am – 12pm US Central Time. We may add an additional weekday class option if there is sufficient interest.
There will be 23 IMCP classes:
- September 16, 23, 30; October 7, 21
- November 4, 18; December 2, 9, 16
- January 6, 13, 20
- February 3, 17, 24; March 2, 16
- April 6, 20, 27; May 4, 11
There is an 75% live attendance requirement for IMCP classes to earn a certificate.
MBMS Academy Classes (Online)
You choose one from the following options (during the dates of the 3 terms):
- Tuesdays @ 10:00am - 11:00am US Central Time
- Thursdays @ 3:00pm - 4:00pm US Central Time
- Saturdays @ 1:00pm - 2:00pm US Central Time
There is a 50% live attendance requirement for MBMS Academy Classes to earn a certificate.
- September 8-10, 2023
- October 13-15, 2023
- November 10-12, 2023
- December 8-10, 2023
- January 12-14, 2024
- February 9-11, 2024
- March 8-10, 2024
- April 12-14, 2024
- May 17-19, 2024
All live trainings will take place in St. Paul, Minnesota at Peter's home studio in the historic Cathedral Hill neighborhood.
What Program Graduates Say
“This program has totally transformed my teaching in so many ways.”
“I have gone from a very vague teacher to a very specific and informed teacher. I am learning a new more patient and kind way to teach. I am being given the tools to teach in a student-motivated way; encouraging them to ask questions and explore so that they are better equipped to learn on their own. I am learning how to teach my students to be more kind to themselves and grow in confidence in their singing.
There is not an area of my teaching that hasn’t been made better because of my work in this program.”
Karen Archbold, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Teacher in Chicago, IL
“I love to sing. This work has brought that back to me and I am immensely grateful. In fact I am singing better than I have in years.”
“My student sends me messages 'Thank you for the amazing lesson!' and that warms my heart. I don’t know what the future will bring but I know that I will stay part of this wonderful group because I love everything I have learned and all the beautiful people I have met.”
Joan Barber, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Teacher in Lewes, DE
"For my pleasant surprise, class by class I realized that I was actually (re)learning not only how to use and access my body but to get in deeper touch with myself as a whole..."
"...my psychophysic - and may I add, cultural, social, ancestral - unity, with softness, subtlety and kindness; a way to learn through process and not results. As a voice coach - and most of my students don’t have the goal to become professional singers - the idea of process has been leading the way for many years: enjoying the voice, exploring it, hearing what it tells about the present moment, what it reveals of the past, of expectations."
Victor Castelo, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Coach in Brasilia, Brazil
"This work has come at such an opportune time, and it is permeating my whole life and being."
"My teaching life, my professional life, my health, my students, everything. It's time to slow down, to stop ignoring my whole self or isolating one part, and it's time to work to let my body (and the bodies of my students) be whole again."
Tiffany Owens, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Teacher in Cincinatti, OH
“The most surprising and profound thing that I learned during this first level was recognizing that my primary job as a teacher is to first take care of myself.”
“To create the environment and do the things that support me and my own well being and coordination. That it is only when we are grounded in this as the central focus that we will be able to make space for and be present with our students, to really listen to them and respond to what they desire to learn. And in modeling our own well being and coordination we are providing them with a lasting gift...that they, too, can be with themselves and “come home to themselves” and that this is always available to them, to all of us. I’m okay, you’re okay. I’m excited to continue to learn and grow. Let’s play!”
Natalie Ford Sajdak, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Teacher in Milwaukee, WI
“I am so glad that I decided to sign up for this course."
“I have learned much more that benefits my everyday life beyond music. I am super excited to continue to work with the techniques shared by in Level I. It excites me to already see a difference in my lifestyle and singing style. I can only imagine what more exploration would do and what future courses would offer. All in all, it comes down to my choice to make the change for the better. Thank you, Peter and the faculty for your choice to share this information with others."
Rose Sanders, Program Graduate
Singer & Voice Teacher in Winnipeg, ON
“When I signed up for this program, I thought I might learn something useful to maybe improve my singing. I have gained so much more!"
“The things I have learned have affected me in amazing ways. Not only can I sing better than every before, but I have less physical pain; I have clearer direction in where I want my life to go; I have found new connection between my spirit and the Creator of the universe. I am excited to explore further, to learn more, and to discover where my journey will lead.”
Suzanne Lutz, Program Graduate
Singer & Teacher in Albuquerque, NM
“What I truly have appreciated about this course is that nobody is trying to restructure the way you teach.”
“Nobody is trying to say you have bad habits, or that you are doing it wrong. Nobody is chiding you or trying to rework your teaching. What is happening here is self-discovery of how we can find what is going to improve our relationships with our students, and building on that, how they and we can improve what we need to improve. It’s an extraordinary thing, this discovery of self.”
Martha Springstead, Program Graduate
Accompanist & Voice Teacher in Virginia Beach, VA
"This program has given me tools, knowledge, confidence, and the desire to explore all that my voice can be."
"In just one level, my voice was transformed from what it was. Now I have so much joy in creating music with my voice!”
Midge McMoyer Smith, Program Graduate
Accompanist, Singer & Teacher in Houston, Texas
The primary instructor for this program is MBMS Founder & Director Peter Jacobson. Guest teachers will be occasionally invited into the program to share their expertise.
The total tuition of the MBMS Integrated Musician Certificate Program is $4,500, which can be paid in 10 monthly payments of $450. If you are able to pay-in-full you will receive a 5% discount.
This includes all your online coursework and 9 days of live training. It does not include travel, lodging or the cost of books.
To ensure an intimate and high-quality learning experience with sufficient individual attention, a maximum of 8 students will be accepted into the 2023-2024 program.
Limited need-based scholarships are available. To receive scholarship funding you must have the capacity to participate fully in the program and be able to say, in good faith, that you wouldn't be able to participate without financial assistance. If you meet these criteria, you can indicate your interest in a scholarship on the application form and you will be considered for a scholarship.
How to Apply
Acceptance into the program is by application only.
A $35 non-refundable application fee is required to apply. After you complete your application, a MBMS team member will be in touch within 2-3 business days to have a further conversation with you.Apply Now
My Promise to You
During the 9 months of this program, provided you do the work and apply yourself fully, I promise you two things:
- You will experience nothing less than an artistic rebirth.
- By the end of the program, you will look, feel and sound dramatically different compared to the start of the program.
I am serious about this. There's a reason I keep this program small. This is not a program where you will get lost in the crowd. You will receive a deep level support from myself and our phenomenal learning community.
So, if you’re ready to take a massive step towards being the artist and teacher you know you can be, I invite you to hit the "Apply Now" button below and begin the application process.
To Your Artistic Success!
With Music & Love,
Founder & Executive Director
The Mind Body Music School