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  • Writer's pictureJoAnna Shaw

Dangerous Dancing

I am interested in dangerous dancing.

Not the kind that causes bodily harm or presents the audience with dancers pushing the limits of human exertion within inches of total exhaustion.

I am interested in the kind of in dangerous dancing that an improviser wrestles with when working with a pre-determined outcome, when outcomes are paramount but the journey to arrive at that end point is being determined as the dance progresses.

There is quite a bit of rigor in assembling a choreographic form as events accumulate. Movers are operating within precise rules of engagement attending moment to moment, while simultaneously functioning inside a choreographic container.

The choreographic container might be defined by a movement language, constrained by a delineated duration and / or progress along a trajectory in which certain key events must take place. I suppose at the out limits of this performance form, one could also entertain changing the final outcome.

This kind of dancing cannot be focused on designing the body, making events graceful. Decisions are made, and the body instantly integrates without arranging limbs, indulging in preparations.

This kind of dancing is a kind of raw doing-ness. It does include thinking time. But there is no measured meter. Durations are jagged.

This kind of dancing calls for a hefty set of skills:

Thinking and sensing simultaneously

Doing (dancing) and simultaneously logging (remembering)

Working with a choreographic brain that can organize in the midst of doing

Awareness of information accumulating in time, in space, and via intentional content

And a maniacal attention to detail

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