Magali Stora
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Andrew de Lotbinière Harwood

Awkwardness, Failure and Redemption: Adventures in Contact Improvisation

An advanced laboratory for teachers, performers, experienced students and passionate practitioners of Contact Improvisation. A strong grasp of Contact fundamentals is essential. A final showing will be presented at the end of the last session.

At its origins Contact Improvisation combined moments of incredible beauty and flow with moments of incredible awkwardness, clumsiness and disorientation. As Contact has evolved and experienced dancers have developed amazing capacities for creating flow there has been a tendency to try to eliminate as many of the bungling moments as possible. This often leads to running through the gamut of known physical techniques and making the same choices over and over, again and again. The freedom Contact Improvisation offers doesn’t come without the courage to accept what is already taking place in our bodies and in the space, to use all our known and unknown resources, to embrace the ever-present making-a-fool quality, and willingly turn even the most awkward circumstances and risky situations into brilliant creative adventures. The unknown becomes a friend, absurdity is worn well and the tyranny of trying to be interesting is overcome. We will seek to reinvigorate the form and challenge ourselves to embrace all aspects of the dancing even when it seems clumsy or strange.


- finicky dances    

- precarious weight

- pushy contact

- holding your own train of thought

- saying no!

- obscure dances

- provoking change

- disrupting flow

- using conflict as a resource

- praising bad dancing

- disappearing duets

- rediscovering disorientation

Helpful Hints:

- consider everything an experiment

- start with a fresh approach every day

- pull everything out of your fellow students

- you can fool the fans, but not the players

- nothing is a mistake, there is no win and no fail, there is only make and do

- do not try to create and analyse at the same time, they are different processes

- to be disciplined is to follow in a good way, to be self-disciplined is to follow in a better way

- be happy whenever you can manage it, enjoy yourself and others, it is lighter than you think

ArtistBio: Andrew de Lotbinière Harwood
Workshopoverview 2015


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