Authentic Movement Retreat at the landing

wild goose chase dance/the landing and New York Dance Therapy NYDanceTherapy.com hosted the first Authentic Movement Retreat at the landing with seven women from the New England/New York area. After two choreographic residencies at the landing, this is the first retreat and – what a ride. As Nancy described it: a roller coaster ride to lightness!

 

ensemble

I do love this photo. You can see all of us and – reflected in the window to the left – the space where we engaged in practice.

For those of you who are not familiar with Authentic Movement, here is a description from Suzanne:

Based on the principles of Freudian free association and Jungian active imagination, Authentic Movement is the ritual of tending to, responding from, and acting on one’s genuine movement impulses. It is a powerful way of bringing unconscious psychological material into known consciousness in the presence of a witness, allowing one to truly be in the present moment. This process of moving in the presence of another offers opportunities for a greater understanding of one’s own creative potential while directly addressing a basic human conflict between the desire and fear of being seen.

Exploring the camera in dance

As part of my sabbatical adventure, I spent some time with Jana learning the basics of Final Cut Pro, and working with her to create two short dance for camera versions of the work I did with Yunyu and Shugi, and with Loretta. It’s fascinating – so like choreographing in many ways; so unlike it in so many others! And wow – I have only just barely scratched the surface of that technology.

Jana and Susan

Jana performs with Cocodaco Dance Project in Chicago, and teaches at Foster Dance Studio. You can see her in action here, in the professional company:  http://www.cocodaco.com/video/ 

Final day at the Opera House

Greg – composer – joined us at the end of the development process. First time to experience music and dance together in the liveliness of interaction. Pure pleasure.

 

Thanks again to Meg, Kate, Pam, Amy, and Isaac at OHA for their support, and to Isabelle and Joe for sharing their home with us during our time in Stonington.

Continuing to build

Dancing with these two is a lively experience. Fast-paced at times and yet always with the space to address all manner of detail.

 

The theater at Opera House Arts is ideal for crafting solo and duet work.  In this closely knit space, you can feel the immediacy of a decision made/investigated.

Round two at the Opera House

Collette, Christian and I will be working on two of Greg’s compositions while in the residency. These two have known each other for 24 years and – while they have long danced together – never danced a duet. There is something magical about working with two people who know each other so well, who have already established a foundation of trust on which to build/on which to fly.

 

Goss Granite porchcloseup.passing

Duet-ing again

I thought I was done. Performing. Apparently, I am not. I have at least been taken in by my own pitch: These are very very short dances!  I am – at best – enjoying moving with my friends.

As part of the Harbor Residency, Tina and I had the opportunity to share our work-to-date with a small group of students and their teacher from the Blue Hill Harbor School, a project-based high school.  In May, the school stops holding regular classes and instead the students participate in field trips, workshops and projects of their design. We gathered such thoughtful and useful responses from them that will help us as we go forward to fine-tune.

This dance came together like a puzzle, of sorts: together, with each other, and with the music. A visual and aural piecing together . . . a wild ride!

Tina remembered this as we were working to ‘fill the gaps’

“Thomas Merton wrote, ‘there is always a temptation to diddle around in the contemplative life, making its-bitsy statues.’ There is always an enormous temptation in all of life to diddle around making its-bitsy friends and meals and journeys for itsy-bitsy years on end. It is so self-conscious, so apparently moral, simply to step aside from the gaps where the creeks and winds pour down, saying, I never merited this grace, quite rightly, and then to sulk along the rest of your days on the edge of rage.

I won’t have it. The world is wilder than that in all directions, more dangerous and bitter, more extravagant and bright. We are making hay when we should be making whoopee; we are raising tomatoes when we should be raising Cain, and Lazarus.

Go up into the gaps. If you can find them; they shift and vanish too. Stalk the gaps. Squeak into a gap in the soil, turn, and unlock-more than a maple- a universe. This is how you spend this afternoon, and tomorrow morning, and tomorrow afternoon. You can’t take it with you.”

-Annie Dillard Pilgrim at Tinker Creek