Gary Labovitz joined the Toronto Symphony Orchestra viola section in 1973 at the age of 21. Now, in his 49th season with the orchestra, he is its longest serving member.
In 1988 he became a student of the Alexander Technique- “a technique for altering the reaction of the individual to the stimuli of his/her environment.”
In “Some Thoughts on Alexander Technique and Viola Playing” Gary writes:
I became a student of the Alexander Technique during my fifteenth season with the TSO,following a performance related injury. I realize now that that injury was a result of years of playing the viola using excess tension and poor postural behaviour. For these past thirty-two years I have utilized the Technique to help my viola playing and I have used my viola to gauge the effectiveness of my use of the Alexander Technique. The two are symbiotic.
In 2010 Gary completed his teacher training course at the Toronto School of the Alexander Technique and became a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique.
Gary is married and has four children and two grandchildren.