Sourcing the Body: Somatic Movement Studies and Its Application in Performance (DAN2258.01)

Elena Demyanenko

This is a practical course for students of any artistic discipline to activate awareness towards a detailed body, vigorous body, sensitive body, rebellious body, fantastic body, working in their chosen form or medium.

Exploring the growing field of somatic studies that acknowledges mind-body unity, we will trust the intrinsic intelligence of the body in making works of art. With the texts of somatic studies pioneers like Alexander, Feldenkrais, Cohen, Rolf and others (to understand a range of perspectives), we will source multiple systems (eg. muscular, skeletal, fluid, organ) and other ways of reading the body (eg. energy, emotion, history). Form and context will be derived from places known through direct experience, drawing on sensation, thought, memory, and imagination. Students’ compositional drafts will be regularly created, viewed, and discussed, opening up conversations on structure, organization, and disorganization. In order to expand the process, we will develop byproducts for our performance making through writing, drawing, collage, and storytelling.

We will develop this research with a view to presenting and performing in studio showings, produced performances, and/or dance workshops. Attendance at Dance Workshop (Thursday 7:00pm – 8:30 pm) is highly recommended.


Learning Outcomes:
Understand History of Somatic Movement Studies
Form and context will be derived from places known through direct experience, drawing on sensation, thought, memory, and imagination.
Learn to be comfortable in the courageous place of unknown.


Delivery Method: Remotely accessible
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
W 2:10PM - 5:50PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 16
Course Frequency: Every 2-3 years

Categories: All courses , Dance , Remotely Accessible
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