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Contact Improvisation

by admin last modified Aug 15, 2020 11:36 AM
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I love this dance/sport, especially spontaneous, exquisite cooperation that can happen.

This section includes some general info about Contact Improvisation, details about the DC CI jam - a Washington DC gathering to practice CI that's been happening weekly since around 1980 - and explorations that have helped me find my way in the practice.

Here are some frequently consulted items from the full listing, further below:

  • I've been developing a progression of elementary skills exercises aimed at providing the foundation of a comprehensive CI orientation. This is a work-in-progress as of May 2018.
  • Contact Improv as a Way of Moving is my best attempt to describe the extraordinary opportunities and challenges in learning Contact Improv.
  • Among those opportunities and challenges is realizing clear personal boundaries in an inter-personal context that's so different than typical daily life. Respecting Boundaries describes some fundamental guidelines for safe and healthy involvement in open ensemble improvisation, including Contact Improv.
  • Ensemble Improvisation's Essential Ingredients describes what I see as the single crucial element for constructive involvement in ensemble improvisation. I would dare say that it's the central principle underlying any of these essays.

Here's the whole collection.

Title Description
A Description: What Is Contact Improvisation? CI is a game organized around a very simple premise: exploring movement cooperation organized around mutual contact points. It offers an opportunity for extraordinarily immediate and involving physical play for the sake of play.
Learning Contact Improvisation Learning CI hinges on learning how to navigate and discover what works well in coordinating with another, and with yourself. While the fundamental premise of the practice - mutually following points of contact between you - is simple, what works and what doesn't can be obscured by the inherently col...
About Contact Improvisation In CI, partners discover their dance by mutually following shared points of contact. How does that work? Here's my enthusiastic perspective.
Online Movement Collaboration Seeking to maintain the skills and enjoyment of sharing movement exploration I found over many years of practicing Contact Improvisation and related activities while we're unable to gather in-person during the COVID-19 quarantine, I've been exploring ways share collaborative movement online. I'm usi...
Respecting Boundaries Contact Improvisation and open ensemble movement improv are based around mutual cooperation rather than control. To work well they depend on respect for one another's boundaries, which we describe here. Please read, to help foster a healthy and safe jam!
What People Do At Jams Here are some touch-points that may help in finding your way at Contact Improv jams.
CI Different From And Similar to Partner Dance Preparing to teach at a large dance festival with people who practice other kinds of partner dance, I wanted to alert them to different orientations, inherent in CI, that can lead to similar satisfactions.
Contact Improv As a Way of Moving Contact improvisation is organized differently than other kinds of partner dance, but that doesn't mean it has to be unclear or confusing. In getting clear about this for myself, and helping others, I've become fascinated with the particular challenges in learning CI, and how to navigate them well.
Ensemble Improvisation's Essential Ingredients The ability to cooperate is developed in practice, and ensemble improvisation provides an opportunity to explore a balanced combination of external and internal receptivity, developing cooperation as an art.
Sharing the Moment in contact improv, depth of engagement depends on mutual responsiveness rather than imposition of control.
CI Is An Opportunity to Play CI offers an extraordinarily engaging opportunity to play. the only "equipment" necessary is an open space with a suitable floor and partners with a shared interest.
Workspace A place for things that I'm working on related to Contact Improv
Improvised Dance/Music duet with Musician Daniel Barbiero Performed May 9, 2015 at DC Joy of Motion. This is one of my favorite collaborations!
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