My main focus for technique class is versatility and synergy. I believe that the mechanics of technique can be addressed through the bigger picture by focusing on the whole body in action as opposed to isolated parts. I like the idea that technique class is also a practice of how to make connections between movement ideas and a sharpening of our performance skills. This class is a culmination of several techniques from my experience as a performing artist. The warm up is a combination of Cunningham, Limone, yoga, ballet, and release techniques. I also incorporate ideas form hip- hop, capoiera, gesture and floor work throughout the class. The warm up is followed by a combination designed to move through space and across the floor. I focus on isolation, initiation and momentum. The across the floor work is followed by a center phrase. This movement tends to be more eclectic and challenging rhythmically and dynamically. The final phrase is jumps across the floor. The jump vocabulary is built on momentum and clarity in the air.
This seminar addresses philosophical questions relating to dance. Students of dance need to be able to articulate the nature of dance and develop an understanding of and use of critical and theoretical language. This ability can deepen ones understanding and relationship to the art form and allow for a foundation to discuss and defend opinions about dance. Lectures include aesthetic experience, critical judgments, creative process, communication, taste, high and low art and other issues surrounding dance and aesthetic theory. Students become familiar with the general history and development of aesthetic theory as well as several systems of critical language that apply to all art mediums. There is also a focus on writing as a tool for articulating theoretical ideas through low stakes writing logs and essay structures.
I regularly conduct courses that focus on the production and performance of new dance works. As artistic director of these productions, I regularly choreograph and collaborate with other choreographers and artists from different disciplines.
In my research in movement theater, I have had the opportunity to pull from a wide variety of sources. I trained at Ecole Jacques Lecoq in 1988. This was an intensive traing in mask, mime, physical theater and comedy. I also performed and collaborated with movement theater companies that incorporated corperal mime and viewpoints for actors in their process. Recently I have been using William Forsyth's ‘Improvisation Technologies’ when working with actors. This has proven very effective in getting movement concepts and narratives clearly in the body in space. In my own work, I continue to find new ways of allowing movement to inspire text and visa versa. The Viewpoint work has proved very useful as a tool in the integration of different disciplines.
My interest and use of improvisation has gained momentum in the last few years. I have a specific interest in improvisation in performance- or 'real time composition'. It is exciting to experience a heightened sense of perception on stage and tap into instinct in live performance. I also incorporate technology in my improvisation courses such as the use of live video feed and lighting design. I have designed and facilitated classes that include dancers, actors, musicians, visual artists and composers.
This class explores ways to generate material for the making of dances. Through improvisation and movement studies I explore the major elements of choreography including space, time, dynamics, meaning and form.
In my many years of teaching composition, I am still researching new ways to approach the elements of making dances. As tools I have used texts such as; The Intimate Act of Choreography by Lynn Anne Blom and L. Tarin Chaplin, Sparks of Genius, The Art of Making Dances by Dorris Humphrey, The Creative habit by Twla Tharp, Free Play: The Power of Improvisation in Life and the Arts by Stephen Nachmanovitch, A Choreographer's Handbook by Johnathan Burrows and Dance and the Specific Image by Daniel Nagrin. I also keep an open conversation going with my professional and academic colleagues to develop new approaches to the craft.