Comfort zones and initial questions

So it’s been a while since I last worked with a new community of performers. Especially for this work, this is proving to be an adjustment of my own comfort levels.  How do I teach a style of movement I have never had to break down, deconstruct and explain?  How do I codify some of house’s vocabulary while trying to maintain its free-form aesthetic base?   

Quite frankly, I am more interested in using its qualities of bounce, rapid shifts between bound and free energy, and focus on down-centered weight (even when the body’s top half is pushing upward). 

Stylistically, I’m interested in:

The play between introversion/minute movement, almost gestural and introspective;

Movement that attacks with strength – I often see this in what I like to call the “house hoedown” stomp;

And the fierce “performance” (equatable in Trini English to the notion of “playing yuhself”) style in which I have seen/experienced radical shifts across gender play (i.e., combination of  the ball room scene’s voguing styles and/or the spectre of the disco diva’s glam vamp persona and a kind of butch up/hyper-masculine attack on movement). 

How can I use these observations/foundations as markers to hone performance style (which I think will be critical to this piece more so than the actual vocabulary itself)?  How can I use these qualities to infuse an improvisational edge to the piece – getting the community of performers to understand and embody them? 


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