Comments on the article: A Dancer’s Body

Barbara Nagode Ambroz commenting on  the article: A Dancer’s Body: Crafted from the Inside Out or the Outside In? By Christie Bosworth

Dear Christie!
You are blessed with a teacher like Peter Townsend and I’m sure he feels honoured and proud to follow your development.

I believe it is quite natural that, at the beginning of a dancer’s career, the input from outside world is more evident, as a dancer has to learn the fundamental principles, the alphabet of a particular dance style, its technique.
The greater the technique/correctness, the greater the effectiveness and the expressive potential of the movement.

How much and when the ‘outside’ is combined with the ‘inside’ depend on teaching methods – a good teacher is telling you where to look, but not what to see

Albert Einstein said:’I never teach my pupils. I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn’.

Ballet master, Roger Tully speaks in his book ‘The song sings the bird’ about the dance which carries the body and not the opposite. He uses the metaphor of a horse and a cart, as body is generally perceived as a horse and a dance as a cart… but we know that the dance/soul/idea can employ the body in order to materialize.

All layers of our existence are interrelated and ‘in the game’- physical body, mind, emotions and soul – we are created that way in order to connect with ourselves and outside world.

The socio-cultural background definitely has an impact, however, there are many dancers who create their careers in foreign countries or with foreign teachers and partners.

Dance is a universal human way of communication and factors like gender, age, sexual preferences, socio-cultural background etc. do not apply as much as we would like to believe. It communicates on a spiritual level, using the physical body as an instrument and connects through human feelings and sensuality.

In movement creation processes, I can consistently perceive a combination of ‘doing’ the movement (learned from outside) and ‘letting it happen'(trusted from inside).
When learned from outside meets and harmonizes with known and felt from inside, dancers experience the sense and fulfillment.

Intuition definitely overpowers the mental approach as it is the voice of the universe and our attachment to it.

Listening to the body means listening to the nature and recognizing its wisdom

Treasures in our unconscious and even a deeper layer – the ‘cultural subconscious’ – are endless. We have to expose ourselves to continuos experiencing and re-experiencing in order to remember, to evoke, to upgrade, to develop, to recognize our unique dance interpretation and all layers of our existence can participate in this process holistically.

Barbara Nagode Ambroz

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