A workshop for choreographers and others interested in dance-making processes, with the goal of exposing, distilling, and amplifying each artist’s individual voice and aesthetic point of view. Participants are asked to develop palettes of materials—movement, ideas, questions—through directed improvisation and/or other means, and to experiment to find strategies of organization so the material has the greatest potency to the dancemaker.
The workshop relies on discourse, both choreographic and verbal, as a means of critical reflection of our own taken-for-granted assumptions about dance and choreography, as well as the assumptions of the traditions in which we each participate. An aim, here, is to gradually move each discovered assumption from a place where we are ‘had by it’ (captive of it) to a place where we might instead ‘have it,’ and can be in relationship to it, presenting us with new awarenesses and increased possibilities.
Potential points-of-departure for investigation and class discussion include: How the audience builds a theory while watching a dance, what constitutes dance-events in each artist’s work, how events are framed within a dance, issues of consonance and dissonance, choreographing the relationship with the audience, and participation or non-participation in existing traditions.
Greenberg also opens his own choreographic process for study, revealing varied influences such as his inceptive aesthetic education with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, somatic techniques as movement liberators, and approaches of discontinuity from experimental theater and film. Individual mentoring is also available.
Greenberg asks participants to consider and collaborate with as much of ‘what is’ as possible—the body, time, space, sound, other dancers—in the creation of considered and specific dance moments. He utilizes concepts drawn from his study of somatic techniques—such as Klein Technique and Body-Mind Centering—as points of departure for directed improvisation and open investigation. Participants are given time to experiment with the physical and theoretical information, and to explore the continuums of leading/following, articulation/connection and conscious/subconscious decisions.
Improvisation is put forward as an arena for discourse, and an opportunity for the examination of the aesthetic values and assumptions behind improvisational decisions, preferences, and habits. Goals include fully individualized and idiosyncratic dancing, and an increased ability to make instantaneous choreographic decisions.
Potential points-of-departure for investigation and class discussion include: the distinction between representing and doing; the variety of foci to which the performer can attend—including an experiential awareness of the performer's own body (presenting an infinite number of possible proprioceptive foci); consideration of the inherent vulnerability in the act of performing; and the cultural implications of how the performer chooses to present himself or herself to an audience.