2013 Professional Training Program
Modern III (Springer)
Investigating the line of human movement and how it can affect the broader strokes of our dancing is at the center of this highly technical, movement based class. Through the expansive use of the back and limbs, Varone’s style will be explored through an emphasis on breath, strength, dynamic lyricism and musicality.
Modern IV (Burrer)
Investigating movement as a means of effective communication is at the core of this kinetically driven class. Dancers will progress from simple, universal movement vocabularies to more voluminous, and dynamic dance, focusing on the back as an initiative force. Healthful alignment, technical proficiency, musicality and spatial exploration will be emphasized. Also, the refinement and subtlety of transitions from one idea or quality to the next will be explored.
Modern IV: BPM (Beats Per Minute) (Jones)
Through progressive cross-training techniques often associated with athletes, this class moves between the dynamic balance of athleticism and artistry. Class starts by invigorating the body's pulse through breath and movement that increase in range and tempo. The warm-up continues by finding strength and suppleness in exercises that move to and from the floor and above and across space. Recuperative physical practices are dispersed throughout the class to emphasize techniques of energetic sustenance and the performance of “presence.” Extended combinations emphasize rhythmic acuity by concentrating on accentuation and technical nuance. The experience culminates with large athletic phrases that play percussive against fluid and that find compositions of flight and floor through rhythms.
Gut Motives: Modern IV & V (Hermesdorf & Mathias)
This class operates from a general unified theory of the act of motion -- from internal impulse to external expression -- utilizing a hybrid of forms to encourage deep awareness and understanding of the body. Motivated from the gut (center & viscera), requiring guts (courage & instinct) and translating to 'good' & 'possession', the practice is a progression of energy cultivation, hands-on instigation, somatic improvisation, technical experiments and methods of falling, flying & inversion, culminating in dynamic, and three-dimensional phrase work. An intimate and animated arena for physical and artistic exploration deeply informed by live original music, cultivating sensate virtuosity, kinetic efficiency and interactive intelligence.
Modern V (Charon)
The goal of this class is to cultivate individual expression within the confines of set material in an effort to develop a unique dancing voice. This class encourages meaningful physical outcomes by exploring rich technical phrases, structured improvisation, and creative imagery. Movements range from simple and pure mappings of the body’s pathways to physically charged, technically demanding phrase work. The use of an expansive back, expressive torso, and movement as energy will be a primary concentration. This class will encourage alignment, clarity of intention, and line and will address specificity of timing, musicality and attuned rhythmical prowess. Major stylistic and technical influences are from the work of José Limón and Doug Varone.
Ballet III (List)
The focus in this class is on correct alignment, ease of movement and dancing fully with musicality. Rhythm, momentum and spatial clarity are emphasized. Explanations of exercises and theory help students to use the ballet vocabulary in a simple, practical way, practicing skills that may be applied to other dance techniques. Exercises at the barre prepare for more complicated rhythms and combinations in the center. Areas of unnecessary tension are identified so that dancers may let go of excess effort and increase technical skills as well as expressivity.
Ballet IV (Mirk-Robles)
This class deepens the dancer’s understanding of body placement, the use of the skeleton, the influence of gravity through the body in a turned out position, and the use of energy from the floor throughout the body. The barre work builds strength and coordination. The center work reinforces an organic relationship to direction and movement, along with an understanding of different movement qualities, such as fluidity in adage, suspension and sharpness in turns, and balon in small and big jumps.
Ballet V (List)
This advanced class is designed for dancers who have a thorough understanding of ballet technique. We move fairly quickly through barre exercises (focusing on placement, ease of movement and rhythm) in order to spend more time honing skills in the center. Musicality, momentum and use of the upper body are emphasized and refined. Advanced work such as jumps with beats and consecutive turns are explored and practiced. By developing core strength and releasing excess tension, we are able to make technically challenging work appear more fluid and effortless.
Jazz IV (Eckman)
In this class you will experience jazz dance technique as an ever-evolving art form that is continuously pushing the envelope, both physically and artistically. Jazz dance is based on a solid foundation with movement driven from the body's core. We will delve into jazz dance's rich breadth of musical variety from traditional to contemporary, as well as its diversity of movement style, approach and history (including Giordano technique). Dancers will work to hone not only their technical skills, but also learn how to integrate performance quality, expression, rhythm, coordination and retention of continuous phrase work. Highly energetic and diverse, this class is designed to be challenging, quick thinking and fun as dancers explore the many sides of American jazz dance.
Hip Hop (Archibald)
This class incorporates the technical fundamentals of both modern dance and hip hop into a gritty street level execution of contemporary dance. The class pushes the dancer athletically, to move with and against gravity, as well as to lyrically fly across space, encompassing both the hard edge of street dance and the fluidity of classical technique.
Introduction to Contact Improvisation (Smith)
Contact Improvisation is an improvised movement form based on the communication between two moving bodies that are in physical contact and their relationship to the physical laws governing their motion—gravity, momentum, inertia, and friction. To open to these sensations, the body learns to release excess muscular tension and abandon a certain quality of willfulness to experience the natural flow of movement. Practice include rolling, falling, being upside down, following a physical point of contact, and supporting and giving weight to a partner. Alertness is developed to work in an energetic state of physical disorientation and to trust one’s basic survival instincts. Contact improvisations are spontaneous physical dialogues that range from stillness to highly energetic exchanges. This class is designed as an introduction and is open to all levels.
Somatics in Practice (Schwartz)
This class is a journey. The vehicle will be our somatic selves. The landscape we will cover will be based on a contemporary dance technique class. Along the way we will take detours, pause at scenic overlooks, pull over for rest stops, get out and rearrange the luggage, check the engine, and look at maps. Using tools such as Body Mind Movement, the Feldenkrias Method, Bartenieff Fundamentals, Zero Balancing, and other somatic methodologies we will go deeper in our understanding of warming up, negotiating phrase work, and dancing. There will be surprises and magic. As well, there will be dancing, rhythm, space, sweat, presence, and breath. All of it engaged through our whole moving selves.
Spiraldynamik® is a combination of the art and science of anatomically correct movement. Like a “user’s manual” for the body, it enhances our understanding of body function by explaining the physics of human movement, given the laws of nature (gravity) and the human anatomical structure. The integration of Spiraldynamik® into the daily lives of dancers helps prevent injury, improve technique and lengthen one’s dance career. In this class, we will study in depth the principles of Spiraldynamik® and how we apply them to our bodies. We will analyze our movement patterns to identify meaningful change and improvement. We will study the anatomy of movement and develop an understanding of the muscular chain reactions that occur throughout the body.
Experiential Anatomy (Schwartz)
This class integrates theory with a highly practical component. We will integrate methods of anatomical investigation with movement, breath, imagination, and touch to help amplify a personal relationship with our instruments. The main focus will be on the skeletal and articular system with a complementary emphasis on the sensorial and expressive qualities of the organ and fluid systems.
This class is designed for students with varying levels of experience with Pilates. We will start slowly with movement drawn from the work of Irene Dowd and progress into the Pilates repertory, exploring core stability, range of motion in all of the joints and bilateral symmetry to prepare the body for a day of moving.
The focus of this class will be on the restorative aspects of Yoga practice, which help calm the nervous system using pranayama, asana and meditation to renew the body after a long day of dancing, in order to return the next day feeling refreshed. Alignment and correct sequencing will be addressed and some poses may be held longer to unwind the hips, back, ankles and shoulders as well as the mind.
Modern Repertory (Varone)
In this class Varone will restage and remake a dance from his repertory on the students. This is a class for fast thinkers and technical movers. The work will be performed in the Festival Finale. All participants must be enrolled in the Charon's Modern V class.
Modern Repertory (Miller)
Our underlying investigation will be: who are we as dancers and how do we use that information? When we’re face-to-face making dances in the studio, how (why?) do we create the alchemical exchange that allows for collaboration? Using creative tools and scores from Bebe Miller Company’s latest work, A History, we will develop a new work exploring these questions. We will work with improvisation, set material, video and audio to help mine the creative process. Dancers should be skilled in improvisation, partnering and ready to engage. The final work will be performed in the Festival Finale. All participants must be enrolled in the Modern V class.
Modern Repertory (Bridgman & Packer)
Bridgman and Packer will set a group piece that will challenge the technical, partnering, and performance skills of the dancers. The work will be highly physical and theatrical. Partnering will include athletic and exhilarating lifts, falls, and weight supports in duet, trio, and group forms that use release and sensuality as well as strength. Some movement material will be developed through the creative input and improvisational skills of the cast. Bridgman and Packer emphasize the individual expression of each dancer and allow the cast’s unique qualities as performers to influence the work. Fun will definitely happen. The work will be performed in the Festival Finale. All participants must be enrolled in a Modern IV or V class.
Jazz Repertory (Eckman)
This class will engage its participants in the process of creating a new work that culminates in the opportunity to perform in the Festival Finale. Under the guidance of Eckman, the dancers will create in a fun and engaging climate while implementing improvisational and design tools, vocabulary and structure to facilitate the craft of choreography. This new work will contain both Eckman's phrase work as well as the dancers collaborative input. Through an athletic and invigorating approach, the process will offer a variety of ways to manipulate movement and partner as individuals and in a group. The work will be performed in the Festival Finale. All participants must be enrolled in the Jazz IV class.
Hip Hop Repertory (Archibald)
Archibald will incorporate her contemporary background along with classical, street and jazz aesthetics to develop movement and create a new work. Emphasis will be on a creative exploration that engages critical thinking and reflection as we develop movement material. The process will focus on the expansion of movement possibilities and character analysis for each dancer. The class environment will encourage the cast to embrace confidence and authority over our moving bodies. The work will be performed in the Festival Finale. All participants must be enrolled in a Archibald’s Hip Hop technique class.
Creative Process (Miller)
This class is for choreographers to investigate strategies and decision-making in their creative research, or TSTSIS: Tricky Situations That Seem Impossible to Solve. As dance making is a form of research, we’ll look at questions raised in movement as well as the context you’re creating: What are you investigating? What are the boundaries of your comfort zone? How much further can your habits take you? What’s your tone of action/ directing/ attention? We will work on solo and group process, and participants will work as directors, makers and dancers.
Contact and the Underscore: Embodiment & Collaboration (Smith)
A class for experienced contact improvisers designed to refresh, deepen, and refine their dancing in Contact while expanding compositional awareness and integrating CI into a broader field of improvised dance. Our practice will focus on physical training in CI, detailed listening practice, discussion, and various improvisation structures—all in relation to Nancy’s “Underscore,” a long score for composition/contact/jamming. We will study physical and energetic changes of state, natural composition, presence, and relationship. We will do this in groups, solo, in contact, in silence and with live music. Nancy’s longtime collaborator, composer/improviser, Mike Vargas, will contribute his music and his point of view. Prior improvisation study and practice is required.
Choreo Lab I: New Directions Tool Box (Koplowitz)
The course will provide a sounding board for new choreographic approaches and perspectives while providing a conceptual and practical tool box for choreographers who want to delve more deeply into their own process. The goal is to alter and bend ones movement creation patterns and modalities. We will create non-hierarchical choreographic material through guided imagistic techniques. In addition media, text, sound and site-specificity will serve as conceptual frameworks and pivot points towards new directions, structures and inspiration.
Choreo Lab II (Varone)
Varone will conduct a composition class with an initial emphasis on compositional structure. Using these ideas as a springboard, new devices for expanding and inventing material will be explored, highlighting how spatial relationships create choreographic design and intent. A large body of work will be created, varied and manipulated both in and out of the studio. Prior composition study required.
Site Specific Creation & Production (Koplowitz)
This course will look into the process of creating real world site-specific choreography/performance from conception to performance. Techniques towards generating site inspired choreography and all aspects of navigating technical issues (lighting, sound, media) including a primer on producing (budgeting, obtaining permissions, insurance, fundraising, audience/event design) will be covered. Urban, architectural and environmental inspired site projects ranging from large-scale to small (guerrilla) style productions and lectures towards delineating definitions of site-specificity and the history of the field will be covered. The Bates College campus will serve as a laboratory for creative explorations.
Performance and Live Video (Bridgman & Packer)
This class examines the relationship of video and live performance from a choreographic point of view. We will explore how video technology can become an integral part of the performance and the creative process, how it can offer a vital layering element in choreographic composition, and how it can add depth and multiple perspectives to the realization of the choreographic intent. We will work with live cameras on stage, recording and editing, green screen techniques, and computer processing in performance. Participants will work on short choreographic projects that will be informally shown at the end of the three weeks. Basic knowledge of Final Cut Pro, iMovie, or other editing software is helpful but not required. Participants with or without a technological background are welcome.
Rhythm Studies (Shamou)
This class builds knowledge of the fundamental rhythmic structure of percussive music and introduces the rhythmic traditions of the African diaspora and the Middle East. Through a hands-on exploration of djembe, conga and other hand percussion instruments, vocal sounds and body rhythms, we will deepen our knowledge of rhythm and music as it relates to dance. We will develop a short piece to perform in the Festival Finale. Please bring a drum and/or percussion instruments, if possible. Drums will be available for an additional fee of $25. Open to all.
The Business of Dance (Konikow)
The practical aspects of the dance profession are examined in this seminar. This includes career options, creating an ‘image’ in print and online, growing dance audiences, financial administration and raising funds creatively, among many other topics. Guests from the Festival faculty will join us with informative presentations based on personal experience. A resume (yours) will be created or reviewed and you will participate in the creation of a hands-on plan to assist in your own future dance project. By the end of the course, participants will be better prepared to perform the business tasks expected of dance professionals and have a more holistic understanding of the field and personal dance community. Bring resume; photocopying fee of $10 due first day of class.
Issues in Contemporary Dance (Kosstrin)
Dive into important aesthetic, social, and compositional issues in contemporary dance. This seminar will focus on changing models of making work in the dance field. We will discuss how the contemporary climate affects performance work, as well as social and gender issues in contemporary choreography. The course will draw upon the work and experience of artists at the Festival and also take a longer view of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. In class we will view video, complete some readings, and engage in lively discussion. There is no outside work for this course and no previous experience is required. Bring your questions and your excitement for delving into issues in contemporary dance.