I was watching dance videos on on YouTube (I'm sorry Neil (it's ok, don't make a habit of it though! ;o) Ed!)) and I searched an American choreographer, called Rennie Harris, and his company Puremovement. I was lucky to enough to see his company perform live in Manchester about five years ago, and meet his dancers. I made friends with one and went to meet up with him in Amsterdam, where the company were performing.
It was my first experience of a professional dance company, and set the standard for how I wanted to work in the future. It was like one big family. I was amazed that the dancers would come from all over the the place, and their separate projects, and unite to produce a tight, completely connected performance. Rennie's magic. I was in awe.
It was also because of this chance meeting that I ended up in NYC and met Makeda Thomas, I highly important person in my dance story/life. This was the time I realised dance was for me. So although I have barely seen any of Rennie's work his influence in my life has been huge. And I'm still in awe.
But enough about me. The point of this blog - I was watching a documentary about Rennie's new work '100 Naked Locks'. At the end if the 'Part 1' video he talks about teachers using a structure in class to help teach, and students taking it to heart as the way things have to be.
This reminded me of something I have mentioned before - the fact that sometimes its hard to feel like your dancing when you're doing a technique class. I think its something everybody struggles with while doing a dance degree (and if you don't please tell us the secret!).
To be thinking of the exercises, all the 'correct' ways to work, your specific things to work on, breath and still dance is a skill that most defiantly takes time and practise to achieve.
In the 'Part 2' of Rennie's documentary he says 'If they [the dancers] are thinking and counting then they're not dancing...they're not engaged. They're on top of the rhythm not absorbed in the rhythm.'
I thought this was really beautiful and wanted to share it with everyone. And remind you, and myself, that its just about dancing.