Sunday, 1 March 2015

When I grow up I'm going to be an improviser

I know, famous last words, I was saying in Retrospective last year "I'm not sure if I'm a dancer anymore, but I do call myself an improviser."  This after about six years of struggling with my love for improvisation (and contact improvisation) but an education in which "you're improvising!" was a reprimand and a performance culture where improvisation is often taken as a shorthand for laziness.

When we were working on Retrospective, my dear friend K pointed out that I might be claiming improvisation as an identity because while there are many criterion for technical dancing which I prefer not to be judged by, I could noodle around but not be judged for not improvising!

But the more I see and experience, I am humbled and delighted.   I don't know if I merit the label "improviser" - but when I grow up I want to be one! I feel reassured that I won't run out of things to work on for another 20-30 years at least.

Here is my knockout list so far:

  1. Yvonne Ng - I saw her perform at the Grey Festival in Singapore 2010, during my final year at NAFA.  I knew from that moment that I wanted to make improvised solos.
  2. Rick Nodine and Simonetta Alessandri at the LCI celebrates Chisenhale fundraiser - 3 DAYS after arriving in London, Sep 2014. Knocked my socks off.
  3. Table of Contents (Siobhan Davies Company) at ICA Selfridges, 2014.
  4. and tonight... Sten Rudstrom at Trip the Light Fantastic Toe!

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