So much has happened within the past week, and to avoid writing for 10 pages and exhausting us both, I will do a brief (ish) overview and then follow up with more specific thoughts and images in later posts.
The major shift has been the addition of the dancers. With one exception, they are all new to me and to this notebook. I was asked how I would work with them to create the affinity I have for these texts, this process and the movement we will create. My solution in the past has been to clarify the nuances and texture of the movement while creating an internal narrative that maps the sensibility. As a mover, you are a product of your culture and experiences. Is it possible to convey that breadth and depth of experience to another individual? While we do follow a basic common physical language, this is modern dance and each dancer comes with an often highly individualized esthetic. My challenge is to find in my dancers, the experiences that perhaps generate a response parallel to my own. As I am writing this, I realize that this is where the first notebook all began.
There is a certain sense of ecstasy that I find in disciplined, sinuous, effortful , purposeful movement that can swirl, fall or release at any moment. It is a state of heightened sensation; of what I call a physical brain, because your intellect become housed in your body and your response is an instinctive tactile response to your environment AND your sensation. 90 trillion cells all sensing and responding definitively to the stimuli from brain and from skin and from muscle. We are sentient beings, yet we spend so much time separating our bodies from our intellect. The first notebook: “In the name of ” looked at the search for ecstatic experience. What takes us beyond ourselves? This notebook “crazy beautiful“ starts out a little further: “When do we learn to edit and how do we choose to do so?”
As to the question about the dancers; In that one, I see the quality that comes from her own sense of herself, but I see also the reflection of her time with me in her shifts of weight and momentum and tension and release and abandon. In the places where she curves because there is a little more Caribbean in her than there used to be. I think it is a good thing. It is a way of carving your life into your skin. Which is where I live.
More to follow, on rehearsals, on the reception and on the epiphany I think I may be having (yup, that’s a loaded word, but there it is).