workshops

photo: Professional Choreographers Workshop, Essex, UK

While these workshops have been offered through independent means, each one can be modified specially to fit within academic schedules and accreditation necessities. Working together we can build a template that will work within your educational environment.

FleshMotor: This hybrid movement class for intermedia performers begins with an attempt to reconnect with one’s ‘pre-trained’ body before the imposition of any particular techniques, habits, affectations or biases have been established. The warm up phase is culled from both old and new theatre and dance traditions with attention to controlled effort and strength in the gross musculature united with skeletal alignment and imagery, ease and momentum and improvisationally using the voice to inform the body, and vice versa. Phrase work is drawn from a personal style developed over twenty years of creating movement in relation to computer systems and digital video. Primary metaphors taken from these influences are the notion of the edit, ‘looping’ and ‘scratching’ and rapid transformations of scale and time. Improvisational variations will be used to personalize phrase material and to expand untapped expressive potential.

Object Oriented Choreography: Stoppiello’s artworks are hybrid creations that combine movement, language and visual, digital and design materials to engage the viewer on multiple levels. Stoppiello uses a method of creative ‘translation’ where students will use one medium as an impetus to create another. Physical and digital “objects” will be used as visual scores for the student to follow based on self-generated rule sets that have been assigned to the orientation and relationship of these “objects”. The student will use procedure and process to find the ‘guiding principle’ of their work encouraging them to trust that whatever ideas they have simmering within will emerge, without force, through the making process.

Computer Mediated Composition: This class focuses on the use of the video camera and computer to generate choreographic material and then to create video imagery to be used in performance. We will use these tools first to redirect and refresh our creative impulse to develop movement material by using simple video recording and editing tools. We will create video ‘scores’ from which to create live dance works. We will, then, focus on how to successfully compose projected imagery – both live and pre-recorded – to use in conjunction with the movement material. Students will learn to conceptualize, shoot, capture, edit and compress imagery for playback in their dance work. The class will, also, explore alternative projection surfaces and locations and use the Isadora® software to resize, reshape and recall these images in live performance. Issues of amplification and diminution, repetition and theme, magic and reality will be explored.

Media Partnering: This class uses the fundamentals of Contact Improvisation, reframed to the context of a media partner instead of a physical one, to help train performers to work more sensitively, and with more improvisational potential, when performing with media. To understand “resistance” and “presence”, the class begins with exercises between physical partners then later transfers the exercises to working with media partners. This way the student has a physical, real world experience with which to address the non-physical, but very present media partner.

Embodied Media Practice: This workshop is designed for performance makers to understand the potential of media-performance from the perspective of the performer, via the act of physical play in pre-composed reactive environments. Troika Ranch co-founder Dawn Stoppiello will bring in pre-composed mediascapes ranging from simple live feeds to more complex environments that track motion or sound as an entry point into becoming sensitive to what the mediascapes “feel” like to performers. What kind of awareness does each mediascapes demand? How does the mediascape impose on the action? What kinds of “choreography” are required to activate the mediascape? How is an intentional relationship between the live performer and the mediascape developed? The group will engage in physical play in one or more mediascapes each day. This play will incite desire to modify the mediascape, which will be implemented as possible, followed by more play. Participants will come to understand the Isadora® media manipulation software through physicality.