Dance, Massage, Gestalt
Gabrielle Roth was one of Esalen’s most popular and enduring workshop leaders. As a young dancer in her twenties, she arrived at Esalen in the mid-Sixties and within a short time was invited by Fritz Perls to teach movement to his Gestalt Therapy groups, and soon after began running the Esalen massage program.
Gabrielle had spent the previous ten years of her life teaching movement to children, elders, people-at-risk, and the disabled, and used her time at Esalen to further hone and develop what would eventually evolve into the worldwide 5Rhythms™ movement practice.
She would eventually migrate to the East coast, where she founded The Moving Center Inc., the vision and vehicle of her body of work. Over the years, Gabrielle’s unique perspective and passion stretched from the dance floor to the pages of three best-selling books: Maps To Ecstasy, Sweat Your Prayers, and Connections.
Based in New York City, Gabrielle also created a vibrant body of experimental theater work, and along with her husband, Robert Ansell, produced more than 20 percussion-based music albums. Now an international institute, The Moving Center oversees the teaching of her work globally in 87 countries, and has certified over 300 teachers around the world. She also created the 5Rhythms Reach Out, a non-profit foundation dedicated to bringing her work back to where it started over 50 years ago: to prisoners, inner city children, the elderly, and other special needs communities. (See www.5RRO.org.)
Gabrielle died at home surrounded by her loved ones on October 22, 2012, and is survived by her beloved husband and son, Robert Ansell and Jonathan Horan, who were and remain her partners on the 5Rhythms path. Jonathan and his sister Lucia Rose Horan continue to regularly lead workshops at Esalen and around the world.