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DAYS of DANCE - Week 1

Another Gaze

(Daniel) summing up the first week of Without Measure's DAYS of DANCE, choreographed and directed by Alex Howard.

Today, Monday the fourteenth of August, me and the rest of the cast of the project have a day off, after an eventful and exciting first week rehearsing and performing in Lansdown Hall in Stroud. The first two days were spent revisiting the research that has taken place the past months in Stroud and the Buddhist Arts Center in London. We explored notions of environment and our relation to one another and this alongside exploring a variety of movement scores that has lead up to Alex work Another Gaze.

On Friday, we opened up Lansdown Hall to the public to participate in morning classes with the company. First class was led by Luke. In the afternoon the doors were open for people to drop in and watch rehearsals. We had some beautiful outside presence with people witnessing throughout the day, finishing off with preparing the space together with technician Will for our performance. Saturday began with a class facilitated by Petra. A soft beginning to the day, building up energy towards the evening. In the afternoon we did a sharing of diaries in The Notebook Experiment where people could bring their personal writings or drawings and have aspects of these reflected back by us dancers or Alex herself. It was an intricate and intimate experience to be immersed in someone else's journey and have the opportunity to experience this in my own body. Furthermore, I shared one of my own writings with my colleague and friend, Fiona, who gave me a joyous and touching interpretation of a day I had in Malaga, Spain this March. It is powerful to share something so intimate with someone else and get their view or perspective of it performed. I am hoping we will do this Notebook Experiment again as there is an infinite source of beauty and dance within text. In the evening we had a programme of performances consisting of works from us in the company. I performed a draft of a solo under the title Its not about Coconuts and Palmtrees - Part 1 which was followed by a trio consisting of Petra, Mariana and their invited friend Michael Picknett playing live music in a piece called Shafts of Light above the Blue. Tim performed an improvisational solo titled I do what you ask. Our second half, finishing the evening was our group piece Another Gaze. Like always, when I move with these artists, I feel an immense support and connectivity in performance. All different qualities in personalities and movement seems to make perfect sense under Alex's creative umbrella giving it a unique sense of unity and originality. We became the environment together with the audience this evening. Yesterday, Sunday, I led a morning class with the purpose of digging further into how we connect with one another and to restore our bodies to continue into afternoon rehearsals. We spent the afternoon sharing thoughts and reflections from the week and previous evenings performance as well as developing parts of a score. Body feels that it has been a six day-week but what a wonderful experience it has been. Re-charging our batteries and getting excited for another five DAYS of DANCE.

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