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  • Writer's pictureSunita Asnani

#30 Just Stuff

This week I participated in an online Workshop by the Australian Dancer & Choreographer Rosalind Crisp on "Choreographic Improvisation". Some of the interesting questions, thoughts and tasks we were working with:

Generate stuff. Just stuff. Not art. Just materiality. Then engage with it, organize it, compose it.

Give the body simple tasks, like:

How am I using the floor?

How am I using my breath?

How am I using timing?

The dialog between the dancer and the choreographer in me: How can the agency of the body and the choreographer in me talk more to each other? The movement composition needs to be sweet to the dancer and juicy for the choreographer.

In drawing, automatic drawing refers to a type of drawing where you give up control of the process and run your hand over the paper without thinking about what exactly you are drawing. Scribbling, doodling.

Similarly, in free improvisation, I aim to let the agency of my body take over, let it do the talking and thinking, produce movement spontaneously without following a specific logic or coordination. I let the composer in me take a break, so the movement can be free from the restrictions and expectations I normally associate with dance.

It can feel delicious, boring, tiring, exciting. You don't waste anything. Everything is something you can work with. You don't wait for good weather. You work with what is there, at your disposal.

How can we disrupt our perception? Change our habitual patterns? That's the choreographer's job.

When is it important to close the door, stay in your private dance, just do what you like.

When is it time to open the windows, see other work, try stuff you don’t like.

All these questions and thoughts are so juicy, so profound. They go way beyond what I am doing in the dance studio.


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