Glenageary Killiney NS 2nd Class, Artist Robert Connor, Teacher Nicola Cummins, Thirteenth Dance Session – 11 March, 2019

Today before we started our warm-up we connected our voice – with expanding and stretching and then shrinking and squeezing – going from a low voice to a high as we expanded out and from a high voice too low as we contracted. Then we did the How Deep Is Your Love warm up and just danced it through without any prompts. Everyone is moving together with far more unity as the weeks have progressed. We then did some stretching and balance and reviewed the wrap swing with the simple forward swing, which we then made into an inverted jump.

Today we looked at the song Titanium; not everyone was familiar with the song so we played it once through and I just asked everyone to listen and how they felt like moving to it – to see what kind of movements the music prompted in them. When it had played all the way through we then just briefly talked about some of the ways that people felt like moving – jumping, stomping, moving smoothly – and we spoke about parts of the music that was easier to feel a continuous movement quality and other parts that the beat was very prominent. We listened again to this smooth vs more rhythmic response, and we then looked at the structure of the music and counted the bars of each section so that we could identify how long a section of the song would be before changing to the next. We identified two contrasting qualities – smooth and sharp – in musical terms you can think of legato and staccato as contrasting qualities. I proposed that because the song had been suggested by the class that we work together to make a dance of their own making and to begin this process I suggested that contrast would be one way of moving between smooth and sharp – unbroken smooth movement and then showing the beat with sharper movement.

We spend some time improvising using “mirroring” as a structure to be together in pairs so that one person was essentially leading a movement and the other being their copy. I suggested moving smoothly, large and big for the first section and then when it goes into the chorus that they change the moving quality to showing the Beat and for there to be a clear contrast between one and the other. It was harder to sustain the smooth quality. Nicola observed as well that in some pears the smooth quality was very very evident, and in another pair of boys the mirroring and the Rhythmic quality was very clear.

In the last part of the class today we revisited the “low dance” and the first dance we did which was “La Fiesta” and even though we had it done either of these dances for several weeks they recalled and performed both pieces well.

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