Previous Workshop Presenters

Jillian Hessel
Jillian Hessel is an internationally renowned Master Pilates teacher based in Los Angeles, California. Within a few months of her initial training with Kathy Grant, Jillian started apprenticing at the Carola Trier Studio where she studied to teach the pilates method of exercises. She has been a long time faculty member of Pilates to dance students at the California Institute for the Arts since 1993 and is a regular presenter at the annual Pilates Method Alliance (PMA) and Body Mind Spirit conventions.
In conjunction with her affiliation with the PMA, Jillian is providing guidance in the development of a national exam for pilates teachers that will help ensure safety, competence, ethics, respect, and professionalism in the industry. She is also certified as a health/fitness instructor through the American Council on Exercise (A.C.E.) and the American College of Sports Medicine (A.C.S.M.), and often teaches specialty workshops at studios across the country. In 1986 she continued teaching the work of Pilates at the Ron Fletcher Studio and two years later she founded her own training practice, which she calls the B.E.A.M. Technique™.

Jennifer Stacey
Jennifer M. Stacey, M.S., a second-generation Pilates teacher, was fortunate to have studied with master teachers, such as Kathy Grant, Romana Kryzanowka, Eve Gentry, Ron Fletcher, and Bruce King. She holds a Master's Degree in Exercise Physiology with an emphasis in biomechanics and dance medicine and has been teaching Pilates since 1989.

Jennifer conducts the Peak Performance Pilates Education Program and workshops in the United States, Europe, Scandinavia, Australia and Asia. She has been a long time presenter in the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science Symposia and founded the two Body Kinetics Pilates programs (1990, 1993).

Jennifer is presently working with Dr. Chady Wonson, D.C., LAc., C.N.C., C.T.N. on developing protocols in Pilates that combine the knowledge from Chiropractic, Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture, Naturopathy, Nutrition, and M. Feldenkrais with the Pilates repertoire. She is author of Movement Perspectives™, Teaching the Universal Reformer Repertoire, and Roller Play™ – Roller Repertoire, and is presently writing 7 more volumes of the comprehensive Peak Performance Pilates Education Program teaching manuals.

Deborah Lessen
Deborah Lessen, a former professional dancer and teacher, was trained to teach the Pilates method by Joseph Pilates’ first protégé, Carola Trier. She then went on to found the Greene Street Studio in 1983, which nurtures a broad base of clients in the Pilates method for general conditioning, performance specific training, injury prevention, post-rehabilitation and on-site comprehensive teacher training.
Ms. Lessen is a founding member and Immediate-Past President of the Pilates Method Alliance, serving on the Board of Directors since its inception. She was instrumental in the creation and execution of the PMA Pilates Certification Exam, facilitating a broad spectrum of tenured Pilates teachers to work together toward a common goal. She is editor and a contributor to the PMA Pilates Certification Exam Study Guide and now Acting Chairperson of the PMA Certification Steering Committee.

Irene Dowd
Irene has a B.A. in philosophy from Vassar College, studied anatomy and neuroanatomy at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical School, and neurosciences at Teachers College, Columbia University. She studied with and assisted Dr. Lulu E. Sweigard at the Juilliard School from 1968 through 1974. Since 1970 she has taught dance, composition, functional and kinesthetic anatomy, and neuro-muscular re-education in many institutions throughout the United States and Canada.

From 1984 to 1986, Irene was co-principle investigator in a study on "Effects of Neuromuscular Retraining on Mobility of the Elderly", with Judith A. Smith, PhD., R.N., as principle investigator, her insights and drawings have appeared in many journals including Dance Research Journal of CORD, Pour La Danse, La Danza, Dance Magazine, and books including Schmerz und Sports (Pain in Sports: Interdisciplinary Paintherapy in Sportsmedicine), and the International Dance Encyclopedia. She is also author of Taking Root to Fly (1981,1990,1995) and choreographed, directed and edited a video-film series produced by Canada's National Ballet School entitled: Spirals, Volutes, Warming Up the Hip Joints: Turnout Dance & Orbits, Preparation for Jumping, Preparation for Performance.

Currently she is on the dance faculty at The Juilliard School (since 1995) and Canada's National Ballet School (since 1991). She also teaches in the MFA program in dance studies at Hollins University Graduate Center in conjunction with the American Dance Festival at Duke University (since 2006), and is a regular guest teacher at New York University, Tisch School of the Arts as well as at Movement Research. She has maintained a private practice in neuro-muscular training and kinesthetic anatomy for forty years.

Madeline Black
Madeline Black has distinguished herself as an international leader in pilates instruction and movement education. To date she has presented her work at distinguished forums such as Balanced Body: Pilates On Tour (POT), the Pilates Method Alliance, the Body Mind Expo Conference, and Pilates Style. She is PMA, ACE and ACSM certified, and Hendrickson Method certified.
Madeline has studied Pilates under many of the modern masters of our time, including Eve Gentry, Romana Kryzanowska, Naja Cori, Jean Claude West and Anna Schmitz. Additionally, she worked and mentored with Marika Molnar at Eastside Sports Medicine Center in New York, studied anatomy and neuromuscular re-education with Irene Dowd, Gyrotonic with Julio Horvath, orthopedic massage with Tom Hendrickson, Integrative Manual Therapy with Sharon Weiselfish-Giammatteo, and Lauren Berry technique with Lynda Caesara. A resident of Sonoma, California, Madeline's home studio is Studio M.

Kimberly Dye
Certified Movement Therapist, BBU Mat Certified, Former Professional Ballet/ Modern Dancer, CEO of Dynamic Movement Products and creator of Stretch-eze. Her movement therapy and fitness products have won major awards for their unique contribution to movement education. She has developed fitness programs for over 30 years that emphasize a sensory approach to improve alignment and expand capacity for functional and expressive movement.

Eric Franklin
Eric has taught at universities and educational schools around the world, including New York University School of the Arts, The Julliard School, the Royal Ballet School, the Royal Danish Ballet and the Laban Center in London. Eric is also the author of Dynamic Alignment through Imagery, Dance Imagery for Technique and Performance, Relax Your Neck – Liberate Your Shoulders, and Pelvic Power.

In 1994 Eric founded his own method intended for dancers called The Franklin Method. It was inspired by Mabel Elsworth Todd's ideokinesis, Bonnie Cohen Bainbridge’s Body Mind Centering® and Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga. Extended from dance field to every kind of human movement, this method combines dynamic science-based imagery, touch, anatomical embodiment and educational skills to create lasting positive change in body and mind, using a range of simple tools, like balls, Theraband®, and other daily life objects. It maximizes neuroplasticity to relearn body posture and movements by practicing movement with activation of unused musculature. The principal goals are how to obtain dynamic body alignment and how to move the body with maximum efficiency.