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Lilian Jarvis

Toronto native Lilian Jarvis is a former principal dancer and charter member of the National Ballet of Canada. After a 12-year ballet career, she left in 1963 for further study in New York City where she discovered the technique of the famous American dancer/choreographer, Martha Graham. This technique became the basis of her health-oriented exercise program, Somatic Stretch®, which she created after returning to the stage at the age of 45 to dance the role of Juliet in the classic ballet Romeo and Juliet, a role she had never danced before. The success of this performance was convincing proof that her method of somatic exercise was a way to maintain a mobile and vital body into the later years of life, She opened a studio in 1980 and began teaching her method with the aim of bringing body awareness and self care to the forefront of human consciousness. Along with her daughter, Meredith Sands Keator, she has also created an online training program for individuals committed to their own self care or as possible future instructors of the technique.