Tribute to Yvonne Becker
Yvonne Becker, a leading Alexander teacher in Cape Town, died on 18 November 2018
I salute Yvonne Becker, who taught the Alexander Technique in Cape Town for over 30 years and who died last month, as a most stimulating teacher and colleague. I feel so grateful for the lessons, and later the work exchanges I shared with her. Her fund of stories, pictures and explanations was limitless, provocative and memorable. I always felt challenged and woken-up, and loved her expressions like “wait for the weight”, as I anticipated moving from sitting to standing.
Having been one of the founders of the AT work in South Africa, training with Joyce Roberts and at the Carrington School in London, Yvonne died after a short illness on 18 November 2018. With a deep understanding of human nature Yvonne did a lot more than teach the Alexander Technique. She kept boundaries carefully, saw through people’s self-deceptions, but was also extremely kind, and generous to a fault.
I served on the SASTAT Council together with Yvonne for some years, usually meeting at Yvonne’s home, and I was one of the lucky recipients of her lavish fruit-salads, (she said she hated to cook), often getting a take-away at the end of the evening. I loved all the books on the coffee-table, especially, when stress was high, the collections of cartoons and jokes. Perhaps most importantly for SASTAT as an organization, Yvonne’s decades of experience, realism and restraint were invaluable in steadying us all. Her humour always prevailed.
Rest in peace, Yvonne. I feel so profoundly sad that we didn’t get more time with you.
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