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This is how it went

Updated: Nov 26, 2022

One of my dance teachers used to say "and it all began with breath", and this is exactly how I began my two month residency "Ich werde mich nur bewegen wenn ich spreche"

Before going into the relation between voice and movement. I started a very thorough exploration about breath. Very soon, I discovered how only by concentrating in my breath travelling through my body, a different posture and movement started to appear. This whole process of breath-body discovery took me a whole week, as a base I used the principles of QiGong. I realised something very important: if in the future I want dancers to use their voices, they first have to connect with their breath in a very different way than in dance.

The three following weeks were dedicated to explore the voice, I came up with different improvisation tasks. In most of them I used the method of visualization and the power of imagination. As I was experiencing the tasks I noticed that it is very important to start simple, and then add more parameters to the task. I thought specially during this phase that it would be good to have someone to tryout the tasks with me and have the constructive criticism and perspective of their experience.

I didn't have any expectations about the aesthetic that would result out of this residency, even if I had used the voice in previous dance pieces. The more I went deeper into my research, the more I was impressed about the intensity in the movement generated by the use of the voice and vice-versa. I personally have never used my voice in such a profound way, I think that movement influences the voice just as the voice influences the movement.

The second month of my research was dedicated to composition: finding different tools to compose a movement phrase through the use of voice. Some of the composition tasks were based in Laban Bartenieff Movement Analysis, some where a transformation of the Forsythe Improvisation tools I know, and some came out of situations where I was just playing around in the studio or at home with my voice, saying a text or a song I know by heart. I even was inspired while I was washing the dishes in my kitchen and singing quite strangely. During this two months I felt so free and comfortable with my voice. In the second month of this residency I was more open to spontaneous ideas and divergence from the original plan, and this approach was very fruitful and motivating.

Something I haven't thought about when I applied for this residency, was to use music. Originally I didn't want to use music, specially in the first part, it was very important to have a space free of music and filled with voice. The second part however, was different because once I had understood a task, the effect of the voice was so engrained in my body that when I put music on top, the music had no influence what so ever, (or so, was my impression, I think the waves generated by music will always have an effect on our bodies)

After the two months, I now have one 'experiment' left in my 'To do List': A music composer, composing live to the movement and the voice I am doing. But in my opinion it is always good to leave the audience with the feeling of wanting more. And this is exactly how I finished my residency: wanting more.

"Ich werde mich nur bewegen wenn ich spreche" was my two month #TakeHeart residency Supported by Fonds Darstellende Künste with funds from the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and Media within the program NEUSTART KULTUR.

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