Posted 15 April 2006 - 06:15 AM
Great topic, Cliff.
As clara 76 says, if you look at contemporary dance from the point of view of classical ballet, bodies do seem to "be all over the place." This can be exciting, but also disconcerting or disorienting.
I'd love to hear more about two of the qualities I see so often in contemporary dance: off-centered movement and quick reversals of movement. Both are found to some extent in certain Balanchine ballets, but seem to be used much more extensively in recent choreography.
I thought of this when I read the following statement from a review of Alonso King's LINES Ballet, posted in Mme. Hermine's LINKS today:
QUOTE: "Watching a King ballet is like alighting in a distant, unknown country and observing the rituals of an alien culture with curiosity and a sense of eerie recognition. Who are these strange creatures with these unspooling limbs, liquid musculature and jutting hips? They turn off-balance in ways that seem to defy physics, twist and torque as though possessed of inhuman bone structure. And then they do something strikingly, shockingly human, like fold up into a fetal position on the floor, or simply hug."
How DO dancers learn to achieve this? Does this develop OUT of ballet technique (in other words, an extension of ballet technique into new dimensions), or is something quite different needed?