Here now

My children have difficulty grasping the nature of live television. The idea that you can´t just go back and find the bit you want to see, that you can´t pause it so that you don´t miss anything while you go and do something else is a foreign one.

The same idea is creeping into our teaching. Am I teaching, if my students aren´t sitting in front of me? Can I teach into the void, let whoever, whenever, pick up the thread when and as they want? Will my online participants who didn´t make it today find me later? Who will read these words and when?

What does this do to my concept of time, to my teaching relationships? Is an author or an artist who´s work touches people down the generations somehow in relationship with them?

Improvising, there is only this moment, once. As Lucia Walker once said to us: „this moment will not come again. Don´t miss it.“

No

As a teacher it is my job to help you to say „no“.

„No“ can be profoundly liberating. Think of a two year old discovering their new found possibilities to influence the world around them…

„No“ to interference, „no“ to controlling the outcome, „no“ to doing things I don´t want to do, no to doing things I do want to do in ways that are not good for me. „No“ to the rules I have adopted in childhood, or created for myself and which are no longer working for me.

The still point

allowing myself time to inhibit, not to end gain…. fully connected to my goal

… allowing more time than is reasonable, than is allowable…

in my teaching… in my directing…

…can I be so slow? A stillness emerges that is not fixed but tremendously alive, expectant with possibities

why am I still holding my breath?

The importance of a safe space

To explore changing a habit needs a safe space. Inhibition, the process of not doing what you always do, can and hopefully does, lead to something new and unpredictable happening. Allowing this needs the right setting, perhaps the reason setting aside time and space for „the lesson“ and the accompaniment of the teacher plays such a crucial role in learning the technique.

Inhibiting habits that are about „doing“ something seem to me to be less threatening than inhibiting the kind of habits that relate to our way of „being“. The muscles that have a „holding“ function that fundamentally affect our muscle tone and balance are also very much related to our way of being in the world. Exploring these can feel like a risky business.

Where to begin

Start right here where you are, standing, sitting, lying, reading these words…

… my practice begins where I stand typing them, unfamiliar with this new phone …

noticing whatever it is that you notice…

that I notice…

This is our starting place.

Forms and frameworks

Eine Form ist ein Rahmen. Innerhalb dieses Rahmens entsteht ein Spiel-und Forschungsfeld. Eine Bewegungsform als einen Rahmen für das Forschen zu erleben, macht es lebendig, neu. Ob Chi Gong, Yoga oder Lindy Hop…

Dann ist das Üben keine Pflicht mehr, sondern eine Entdeckungsreise. Welche Formen in deinem Leben bieten dir welche Forschungsräume?

In diesem Sinne, seid herzlich eingeladen, bei mir simple Bewegungsformen zu entdecken und zu üben…

Spaces

What kind of rooms make it possible for me to do my work? Inner space and attitudes are as relevant as walls and floors. „Home office“ just about works, but home practice room? And I do dream about the right kind of floors…

Wooden sprung dance floors, tatami mats for rolling and falling on, warm floors for body work…

Why? To gradually explore the transition from lying to upright as if for the first time – to relearn that coordination anew. To experience support from the ground as if it goes without saying – „selbstverständlich“ as the Germans say. To allow myself to be a child again…

Is this dance?

Thanks to an invitation to participate in an online cultural event in Paderborn, I discover:

My body is stiff from not moving, everything hurts. Improvising alone, I keep losing the thread. Watching myself on film is uncomfortably revealing.

Connecting with my support network – partner, friends and  colleagues – make the impossible possible. My first dance film!

A two minute film will be streamed live as part of Kulturheimspiel on Wednesday 14th April.

Change

If you want things to change, you have to be willing to be in the uncomfortable places.