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The dancer within : intimate conversations with great dancers - Hackley Public Library
About this product Product Information The Dancer Within is a collection of photographic portraits and short essays based on confessional interviews with forty dancers and entertainers, many of them world-famous. Well-known on the concert stage, on Broadway, in Hollywood musicals, and on television, the personalities featured in this book speak with extraordinary candor about all stages of the dancer's lifefrom their first dance class to their signature performances and their days of reflection on the artist's life.
The Dancer Within reveals how these artists triumphed, but also how they overcame adversity, including self-doubt, injuries, and aging. Most of all, this book is about the courage, commitment, love, and passion of these performers in their quest for artistic excellence. The reader will quickly realize that "the dancer within" is a metaphor of the human spirit.
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Between a Dancer and a Camera: The Photography of David Cooper
Rose Eichenbaum succeeds admirably with an open mind and probing questions and the result Show More Show Less. Pre-owned Pre-owned. See all 7. No ratings or reviews yet. Be the first to write a review. Best Selling in Nonfiction See all. Burn after Writing by Sharon Jones , Paperback 2. Save on Nonfiction Trending price is based on prices over last 90 days.
Open Borders Inc. The work was veering towards being provocative because of what I set out to do. At a work-in-progress showing in April, there were two kinds of responses. If the piece had to be provocative, audiences felt that the provocation needed to be notched up till it felt uncomfortable. The second response was—why was I making an audience watch this? The latter response led me to think about the craft available to me as a choreographer. If my craft was to treat the body in space and time in a certain way, this work needed to have that element.
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It could not ride solely on its provocative power. This turned the entire process on its head. Instead of looking at sexual position after sexual position, what were the various kinds of little studies I could set up by playing with two bodies in this space on and around the bed? What could I do to deconstruct intimacy? From being provocative, I entered the realm of being choreographic about the exercise. How does the body differ from the written word in how it makes an argument? How compelling can the performance of intimacy be?
Can there be dissent in an argument the body makes, demanding its own rights? Whom does it want to sleep with? What kinds of desire and pleasure does it seek to derive? How do you negotiate provocation and choreography, form and politics? Where does the text reside as an underlying narrative in all of this?
The piece is divided into fragments, and is looped, so the dancers exercise a great deal of choice in how they choose to patch the piece together. They also come with their own baggage, each suggesting a certain kind of sexual being in their presence and actions. And now they are implicated even further, because they must make their bed before they lie on it.
I struggled with the idea of narrative. Every time I put the sections together, they began to fall into some sort of narrative. Were the two men meeting for the first time? Did they just have their first sexual encounter?
Is Salsa Dancing Intimate?
Have they broken up now? Could the story gesture towards a universal study? One of the emerging structural themes in the work then began to be this idea of choice and non-linearity. The piece needed to be autonomous of its choreographer for there to be a larger politics of choice at play. The dancers now decide the order in which they play the seven fragments of the piece, and the direction in which they position the bed. They may choose to take it off-centre and be closer to the audience on one side.
They also assemble the bed before the performance begins. It felt like each element in the performance needed to become autonomous. Then, every time they come together, there is a new encounter being proposed. Each performance opens up a new reading. The personalities of the dancers also make it a certain kind of piece. In the rehearsal process, one could see their sexualities coming into play. They would easily assume positions they were comfortable with. I am still in the process of undoing that.
Sometimes, I make the choice of going with it. However, I feel like the piece needs to surprise us, just a little bit. How does one keep the unfamiliar going? I am watchful of what I desire to play out and, sometimes, I rein in that tendency. During the creative process, I did get very clinical about breaking intimacy down. We played with the proximity between the two bodies. We thought about touch, as opposed to no touch. How could one body part touch another and produce a reaction? How could one look at the gaze in isolation?
How could one look at the act of one body cradling another? How could intimacy penetrate the very tips of fingers and join two bodies? What did one do for foreplay?
How could one enter the sexual act without actually entering it? So, the process was clinical.
In some places, it became quite mechanical and I had to think about how one could infuse intention into the movements again. Even that was clinical, in how we thought it through. For instance, we played with the gaze. What if the eyes were suggesting a particular pattern while the body expressed another intention altogether? We are used to seeing intimacy around us and experiencing it ourselves. Through this act of making things clinical and reconfiguring them in unexpected ways, how does one complicate the provocative and make the familiar a little unfamiliar?
How do we look at two bodies as a unified creature of sorts? How do we transcend an image of two bodies of the same gender and view them as two breathing organisms that have exercised the choice to be present?
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