Week 9 – Relationships with the Audience

I never considered the audience as being part of the improvisation, however the reading and the practice made me think differently. When reading Landscape of the Now it made me question why do we need to have a relationship with the audience? And how does it influence us? Taking these questions into the practice, helped create a relationship with the audience. Whether that was with:

– Eye contact
– The audience influencing my movements
– Doing movements that I think they will like
Inviting or refusing the audience to see what I am doing

Another thing that stood out for me was what Steve Paxton said ‘You have to reserve the babbling for later (Paxton laughs), when everybody’s ready, or at least tired of your slowness and need something else’. I feel this aided me to start of slow and not to burst into fast motions when entering the space. I felt calm and I often allowed brief stillness’, therefore I could see what was happening around me and I could maybe bring something to the piece.

Music motivates me, however I think it can motivate me too much when improvising. All moves seem to flow to the music, and I find it difficult to work against it. When the music was slow and flowing, I would try and fit the rhythm. However, I had to do the complete opposite such as: jumps or sharp fast movements. After a while I got the hang of it, and I feel this will benefit me for future improvisation sessions.

De Spain, Kent. (2014) Landscape of the Now. New York: Oxford University Press.

Week 8 – The Break Down of Scores

The reading RSVP  put things into perspective on how improvisation works. I feel valuaction needs to be included in my improvisation more, I think it will help in developing current ideas and bring new ideas to my body.

I was pleased with my feedback from the assessment because I have improved and I can see myself pushing myself more. Especially today, when warming our bodies I tried to push my boundaries. I simply did the opposite to what everyone else was doing. They did soft, flowing movements where as I jumped through the space. Another time I ran from one side to the other, this then changed the atmosphere and everyone began to copy to fit ‘the score’.

I loved the idea how our lesson was put in to a score. Even though we didn’t choose what we was doing we set what the score was. In a way I feel this motivated me because I knew what was in store for the session. Another thing that motivated me was the music, it influenced me to have more energy in what I was doing. The break down of the scores really showed that there is many different ways to write a score.

– Original: Everything is set
– Walking Zones: Walk however you want but we set the pathways
– Stillness: Do what you want and emphasise stillness

Reading the score was easy but interpreting it into my own movement could be completely different to what the choreographer intended. Next week should be easier with the development because we will have had time to refine what we need to do.



Week 7 – Scores of the dance world

What are scores? Scores have many definitions, as in Olivia Millard’s piece it states that ‘each user of scores in the dance improvisation finds her own use and meaning for them’. Scores can generate movement material, or it could support us as ‘a prop, a ruse, a pretense’. Even if we do not want a score, that is the score.

Thomas Lehmen’s Funktionen rules didn’t make sense to me at first, I needed someone to simplify and clarify the rules. When the rules was put into practise I began to understand his work. ‘It’s better to’ intrigued me because whatever was stated was then changed into movement. I know this doesn’t sound to interesting, but I feel that the task will encourage me for the next time I improvise. I could imagine doing something like: It’s better to go for a swim. My first instinct is to move my arms, but then I could develop this movement quality into my legs or another part of my body. Even if it seems impossible, I would find a way round it to make it possible and somehow make a move that represented swimming.

The final activity of the practice:
– Material Maker
– Interpreter
– Manipulator
– Observer
– Mediator

I took on the role of the material maker and interpreter, both easy until the manipulator came in, however I found this helped. It challenged me on what I could do to get away and pursue what I want, I didn’t have time to think, it just happened.


Millard. O (2015) What’s the score? Using scores in dance improvisation. Brolga: An Australian Journal About Dance, 40, pp. 45-56. International Bibliography of Theatre & Dance with Full Text, EBSCOhost. [accessed 12 March 2017].

Week 6 – Complete the image

From the reading ‘Composing while Dancing’ the information I gathered and sank in was that we are the image, we have to become them instead of just being a shape. I liked the idea of if ‘the image fades, you leave’ in The Red Square score of Barbara Dilley’s. Depending on how you take this in, you can either leave the space or pursue and create a new image.

I thought it was interesting how we developed the session. By the exercise being broken down, I found I got a better understanding of what each section consisted of. Starting with one person walking into the space with the eyes closed was daunting in a way. When I went into  the space I had an image, but it could look completely different to what I thought because I didn’t have my vision to help. The development of this was another participant to come join and complete the image. Simple as this sounds, it could actually be quite challenging. I felt the need to somehow make it interesting to the eye. What will my image communicate? How will someone respond?

Most of the session I was an observer. Observing helped me think about my movement material and what movements I can gain from others. I needed this because in the previous week I felt I struggled and stuck to my habitual movements more than I normally do.

Week 5 – What’s the difference?

Before the readings I thought form and structure were the same thing. I’m still not 100% sure of what the big difference is but I know now that form is always there if we want it or not. Anna Halprin mentioned that we can not explore improvisation if form is in place. However, if form is always there, how do I explore? I find it hard to understand if form is there when I dance, on the other hand I’ve never considered  it.

I understand the element of structures in improvisation, I like how structure can be so little such as how many dancers are on stage or where you enter and exit the stage. Also how complex structures: such as run a circle. As you can tell running in a circle is quite limited and you will struggle with what to do. Lisa Nelson mentions that you need to break these limitations without actually breaking them. In my own words the comment made, made me think that somehow we can drive our self to make new material to live up to the structures set.