Posts Tagged ‘Improvisation’

Ballet with a Twist

December 7, 2009 Leave a comment

Jill Johnson, forner Forsythe dancer in the Frankfurt Ballet, gave a technique class at OSU that used elements of ballet as a source for improvisation. The familiar movements made it easier for the class to feel free to play or discover new ways of executing that movement. I enjoyed how throughout the class she continued to question using “how” and “why”. How can we find new ways to execute this? Why can’t this traditionally codified movement be x? How can we bring the traditional to the present?

What I found most interesting was that alot of the improvisation that I was noticing and doing appeared to resonate a hip hop quality. The articulating spine, the loose but grounded legs. The music helped too set that theme for myself–haven’t heard JT in a while. This class brought to question the similarities between these two styles and how although they can at times be placed on opposite ends of the “high art/lowart” binary, there is something about the way these styles demonstrate the lines of the body in interesting ways.

Jill Johnson is currently working with Cedar Lake so I wanted to post a clip of them. If you notice, one of the female dancers, Ebony, is actually the one of the two back up dancers for Beyonce. They do installation work and that’s something right up my alley.

Oh dance…