Tuesday, July 20, 2010

In process: Summer Creation Period 2010 (post 4 - Nicole Russell)

Last week we finished Penumbra, Susan Kendal’s new choreography. It was really interesting to see how we all fell completely into the movement again after having a two-week break from our first rehearsal with Susan. The movement obviously had sunken into our minds and bodies within that 3 hour rehearsal and we could all tell how well it suited each individual company member.

Within Meaghan Guisti’s rehearsal process we had 4 solid days of rehearsal, where as with Susan we had breaks in between rehearsals.

The two processes were different due to the choreographer’s schedules, however I think it was extremely beneficial to me as a dancer as well as Susan the choreographer when building Penumbra from scratch. I found that within the breaks between rehearsals my body allowed the material to sink in and let my brain have a break from all the movement memory I was taking in. I can imagine from a choreographer’s point of view that having a break after the first rehearsal allows you to really think about how you want the movement to develop and to see what works on the dancers you have.

With Meaghan’s rehearsal process we were learning an already completed piece of choreography so the learning curve was different. Having the 4 days of solid rehearsal allowed us to really concentrate on all the tiny details she had already found that she wanted, from setting the piece on a previous group of dancers.

Nicola Russell in rehearsal for Meaghan Giusti's work "Plaid" / photo by Margaret Lochhead

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