Monday, October 07, 2002

Finished the work with Fran Barbe for her Research & Development project on butoh based contemporary dance. It was an intense week of learning. My most valuable experiences were working within a group of 8 dancers. We worked primarily without music, in unison and learning to sense the appropriate moment to move. It was a unique experience being able to “feel” each other’s impulses, cueing from an intuition that came from somewhere inside the group. I learned to recognise my own patterns; wanting to rush, jump the gun, and live, as Fran called it, “in tomorrow”. Fantastic experience!

Since this practice based work in butoh I have been doing much mental work concerning the choreographic methods I am hoping to create. Last week I gave a presentation to the Stephen Arlen Award committee, as I was short-listed for a research & development grant. Cash is needed to work in a practical way on developing these methods of showing the dancer as an individual, revealing their personality in set movement material, negating theatrical representation, throwing out symbolic movement...all those things I can’t stand to see in contemporary dance!

Hence, I have been looking a lot more at non-verbal communication: gesture, posture, breath, gaze, facial expression; as a means of gleaning aspects of personality and real emotion. These non-verbal cues give real insight into the person and more importantly are unconscious and thereby rarely controlled. Using these in a choreographic sense intrigues me. I’ve now expanded my people watching from daily walks through the City into my office. It’s a stroke of luck that my day job is interviewing people so I can observe to my heart’s content!


Post a Comment

<< Home