SOFT ANIMAL: Fundamental Principles and Practices of Contact Improvisation
As we practice Contact Improvisation, we develop surprising elasticity—to be both supple and strong, tender and fierce. We move spherically. We dance, at times, with a “sixth sense.” We listen physically and emotionally to impulses and instincts. We learn, through our dancing explorations, about being human, being both vulnerable and bold.
This all-levels Contact Improvisation workshop will polish physical principles and precise skills that support the development of our “soft animal body.” We will sharpen our tactile connection to our partner and skillfully play with gravity, leverage and weight. We will work with the principles that underlie the fluid motion of CI. Like deep secrets, these principles represent the core wisdom of Contact Improvisation. Utilizing spirals of the torso and extension of our limbs creates a seemingly magical ability to counterbalance, fly and gracefully descend. We will pursue vivid impulses, momentum, and trusting our physicality. While the primary focus of the workshop will be focused on the physical principles of alignment, fluid weight exchange, and dynamic support, we will concurrently be exploring states of mind and heart–and how to trust our expressive animal bodies to lead us in the dance.
This workshop will illuminate the fundamentals of Contact Improvisation in a way that pours curiosity into the practice—for those who have been practicing for a long time, or for those just discovering the mysteries and magic of CI.
When: June 7-9 Fri. 11-6; Sat 10-5:30; Sun. 9:30-1:30
Cost: $185 for all 3 days, $155 for Fr-Sat, $85 for Friday or Saturday (if space is available). Includes lunch. Local camping and housing are available for an additional $5-30/night.
Pre-registration is required! To register, submit the form below AND make your payment using Paypal or mail. Registrations/payments received after May 20 are subject to a $20 late fee.
STEVE HOMSHER is a visual artist and dancer with a background in gymnastics, ballet, mime, social dance and martial arts (kendo). When he discovered CI in 1996 he was studying aerial dance and performing with Frequent Flyers Aerial Dance, with an emphasis on Skinner Release and low flying. He eventually became less interested in choreographed work and drawn to improvisation. CI engages him physically, mentally and emotionally like no other dance form. He is an avid student of CI, and has been particularly influenced by Martin Keogh, Keith Hennessy, Ray Chung, Nancy Stark Smith, and Chris Aiken. He has taught across the USA and has participated in ECITE festivals in Estonia and England. He is a co-organizer of the Moab Jam, has taught at Freiburg CI Festival, Aerial Dance Festival, and Grenoble festival. Since 2003 he has been a member of Tumblebones CI Collective. Steve lives in Boulder, Colorado.
GRETCHEN SPIRO appreciates that Contact Improvisation is often called a practice—because, well, she keeps practicing. She discovered CI in 1983, and studied extensively with Nita Little. She received a BFA from CalArts in 1986 and taught dance and yoga at Oregon State University for 10 years. Interest in the inner world of the emotional body led to a Masters Degree in Dance Therapy from Naropa University in 2000. Primary CI influences are Nita Little, Martin Keogh, Keith Hennessy, and Chris Aiken. Gretchen was an organizer of CI36, and organizes the annual Moab Jam. She has taught at the West Coast CI Festival, Earthdance, SFADI, Aerial Dance Festival, Freiburg CI Festival, Grenoble festival, and others. She founded Tumblebones CI Collective in 2002. Along with dancing, Gretchen is a Gytotonic trainer, yoga teacher, and somatic psychotherapist. She is currently fascinated by the training principles of Ido Portal. She lives in Boulder, Colorado.
Date(s) - 06/07/2019 - 06/09/2019
10:00 am - 6:30 pm
The Rumpus Room