Contact Improvisation

“Every part of me feels very alive—turned on, awake, present, ready, both comfortable and on my edge, sharpened and softened, deepened and extended, challenged and soothed, and physically and energetically tuned to myself and others.” Nancy Stark Smith

 

‘A spreading out, a re-distribution of attention, of energy, of focus, a releasing, an opening, a reconnection, a connection, a sensitising, a softening, a re-awakening, a re-balancing, a celebrating, a joining, a deepening, a lightening, a receiving..’ Juliet Shelley

 

The ABC of Contact Improvisation

We begin by establishing an embodied and fluid relationship with our bodies, the breath, the floor, earth and space. We experience the ‘skinesphere’ – everything that is contained within the boundaries of the body – and the relationship of the body with gravity, the floor and the earth.

We release our weight and mobilise our physical mass, allowing sensation, skin, surfaces of the body, weight and our connection to the floor to guide our motion. We explore yielding, rolling, sliding, creeping, pushing, pulling, crawling, and finding supports. We sequence, spiral, flex and extend and reach, moving from the spine and centre to the limbs and peripheries and back to the spine. We explore high tone, low tone and travel along the floor, up to standing and back down to earth again, expanding our awareness to include others and the room.

Moving in contact with a partner, experiencing gravity and the forces of counterbalance, supports and weight. We negotiate and navigate physical pathways through space in contact with each other. We explore being passive, active, receptive and directional, learning to trust ourselves and our bodies and to read and respond to the physical information we are receiving in a moving duet.