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Friday, June 28, 2013

Impulsive Dancing

Tom Cruise gets impulsive in "Risky Business"

By "impulsive" I don't mean jumping up from your chair when your favorite song comes on the radio (although that certainly is a lot of fun!).  I mean finding the impulse within your body from which movement originates (whoa! how technical!).

A couple of students recently asked questions that were wholly unrelated but I answered in the same way. I told them both that they needed to identify the place within them - chest, abdomen, back, shoulder, etc. - that they could access to initiate movement, whether it was for a developpe a la seconde or improvisational dance. It's often not where you think it should be!

For example, when I perform a glissade a la seconde I don't start the movement in my feet.  I think first about opening and closing the tops of my legs like a pair of scissors cutting something.  That stretch and squeeze motion is what initiates the movement and then my feet spring off the floor for height and width.

For pirouette en dehors, I will initiate the turn with my foot pushing down into the floor for momentum and then follow it with the center of my back.  Others initiate it with the backs of their heads or their hands pulling back into a first position.  

If you are having trouble with a step - due to speed or timing - think twice about where the impulse for the movement starts in your body. And if you find yourself stuck, try initiating it elsewhere. If you normally jump using your feet and want more height or ballon, try using your hips or the tops of your legs.  If you are slow on petit allegro, consider accessing your deep rotators to get more turnout.  

Think - and dance! - outside the box!  Happy dancing~

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