Salt Lake City, Utah 2015

Salt Lake City 2015

Smith College is proud to be the site of the very first Alan Fraser Piano Institute held in 2011. Year V of our flagship institute will again be located in Sage Hall, home of the Smith College Music Department. The two fine Steinway pianos (a pre-war New York B and a more recent Hamburg C) in Earle Recital Hall’s intimate concert space assure the highest possible level of artistic work at this Institute. Sage Hall’s practice facilities also feature Steinway pianos. We are grateful to Smith College for their continuing support of the Alan Fraser Piano Institute. Northampton, Massachusetts with its many interesting eateries and numerous New England wood frame houses provides eminently congenial surroundings for the intense creative atmosphere of the institute. Smith College is one of the most revered of the New England universities and its stately architecture is at once ennobling, inspiring and welcoming. We look forward to seeing you there!


Our long-standing institute organizing director Christine Olson is a studio teacher with many years' experience working with young pianists. Her insights into the application of Craft of Piano principles in studio teaching are invaluable. Alan's work with young children is exemplary, but for those interested in long-term strategies, Christine’s work offers a further dimension. For the first time this year, interested studio teachers may have one or more of their lessons with Christine for a chance to discuss and investigate these issues more deeply.


Alan Fraser is a senior Feldenkrais practitioner with over 20 year’s experience. But at the Institute he is generally booked solid with piano lessons and only gives individual Functional Integration lessons as an alternative to one of a student’s allotted piano sessions. For those who want additional hands-on Feldenkrais experience during the week, the Smith College Institute is pleased to welcome Victoria Ahrensdorf as practitioner-in-residence. Victoria was a student in Moshe Feldenkrais’s last professional training in America, just up the road from Smith College at Hampshire College in Amherst, MA, and has over 30 years’ experience. Victoria received more personal Functional Integration (FI) lessons from Moshe himself than almost any other trainee, and she literally lives and breathes the innate wisdom of Moshe’s brilliant method. We are honoured and privileged to have Victoria with us to give participants extra FI lessons upon request. Fees for Victoria’s FI’s are outside and in addition to the Institute tuition fees.



The Autumn Inn is just a few minutes' walk from Sage Hall, and offers Fraser Institute participants a generous discount: $92 a night instead of the standard $142. The Inn has an outdoor swimming pool, bikes available, breakfast included, and every room has 2 double beds. If participants double up, this option becomes very reasonably priced. We will do our best to pair you up with a suitable roommate if you want to share a room but don't know any other participants. To receive the Autumn Inn piano institute discount, call (413) 584-7660 and ask to book a room in the “Smith College Alan Fraser Piano Institute block.” You have until June 12th to reserve your room at the discounted rate. Please call and reserve your room as soon as possible as July weekends tend to fill up quickly. All guests have a 48-hour cancellation policy prior to arrival.


There are cheaper hotels (a Day's Inn and America's Best Value Inn) in Holyoke, 10 miles south of Northampton, so if you have a car this is also an option.


We are also pleased to recommend, a site offering very reasonable accommodation in private homes close to Smith College. For instance, this single room is comfortable and less than half the price of the Autumn Inn, even at our preferred discounted rate. Airbnb does not allow third party rentals so we cannot reserve these places for you. However we are happy to give them our referral. The earlier in the year you make your booking, the better selection you will have at airbnb.


Last but not least, this year Christine Olson has personally arranged with several of her neighbours to offer low-cost accommodation to financially strapped participants. Please contact Christine if you would like to be billeted in one of these homes. We are doing everything possible to make your attendance at this institute financially viable!


Fees for the Alan Fraser Piano Institute cover venue rental costs, travel costs, administration and website costs as well as Professor Fraser's teaching fees. Accommodation fees are paid separately to the host institution or the private accommodation you arrange. Please click on the link below for the registration option most suited to you. After registration, please return here to fill out this detailed participant information form.

Option 1: Register with a $100 non-refundable deposit.

Option 2: Click on the payment option best suited to your requirements in the table below.

Type Early Bird 50% After April 15 50% Early Bird Full After April 15 Full
Full Active $422.50 $443.50 $845.50 $887.00
Active Per Day Jacob Thornton @fat
Full Audit Larry the Bird Mary @twitter
Audit Per Day Mark Otto @mdo


Students up to age 25 use this coupon: STUDISCNT for a 25% discount.

Seniors 65 and over use this coupon: SENDISCNT for a 10% discount.


To register 'in person' and pay by cheque, please email Christine Olson or call her at 1-413-586-4012 to reserve your place. Christine will answer all your questions as well as arranging your preferred payment option and special discounts.

Send checks to

Christine Olson 12 Forbes Ave. Northampton, MA 01060




Canadian pianist Alan Fraser gives master classes and recitals worldwide and conducts ongoing research and refinement on the ideas put forth in his three books, The Craft of Piano Playing (also in DVD), Honing the Pianistic Self-Image, and All Thumbs: Well-Coordinated Piano Technique. He is at work on several new volumes. Visit here for more on Alan Fraser.


Christine Olson is a pianist and Alexander Technique teacher based in Northampton, MA. Alexander Technique and Feldenkrais Method are like two peas in a pod, so it was natural for her curiosity to be stimulated by Alan Fraser’s approach several years ago. She is on-site liaison and one-woman organizing committee for the Institute.



Christine is the general coordinator and administrator for the Smith College institute. Here are all her contact details:

Christine Olson
12 Forbes Ave.
Northampton, MA 01060


If you have concerns or questions about your participation in the institute and would like to address them directly to Alan Fraser, please feel free to contact him at


  • Accommodation
  • Getting There
  • Registration
  • Contact