I've had several rehearsals since my last posting, and all three pieces that I have been working on for the January show (we have a date, by the way: January 15 and 16 at Creative Alliance at Patterson Park), have moved forward.
Duet: The movement is all choreographed for Duet. A couple of weeks ago, Amanda taught us some contact improv exercises in lieu of technique class at the beginning of rehearsal. I noticed an immediate difference in the way the dancers were able to embody the partnering and tumbling movements in the piece. In addition, it developed a sense of camaraderie between the dancers, which translates into trust within the duet itself. For me, I noticed that this came across weeks later when Sara and I were working on a section in our duet (we're the old couple:)). I was trying to insert a lift into a section that moves in a fluid, circular way, so the lift would rely predominantly on momentum. I really felt that, since Sara and I had partnered together in the exercises Amanda had given us, we were trusting enough of eachother, for her to bounce off the floor and jump on me, and for me to move out of that, taking her momentum. So it really worked and we created some interesting new movement together, which I was really pleased with.
Now that the movement is completed for Duet, I have some new challenges. First, I need to put the piece in front of some outside eyes, so that I can clarify the choreography. I really miss being in school for this, or at least being in NH, where I could just call up Stephanie and say, "hey come look at this", and get some no-nonsense, knowledgable, non-sugarcoated feedback, which is what I need right now. Second, although my dancers are awesome and doing a great job, we all still have a long way to go before the dancing is clear and well-performed. I gave them all the warning last week that this is where I'm going to become a really annoying rehearsal director. "Again! Again!" etc... There's also that internal motivation in this piece. I originally had them all write about what they would say if they were a message in a bottle, and I really want to work with them to determine how they can take my movement, and give it their meaning. I don't know if this is possible or not, but I think it will add another dimension to the piece and its an interesting concept to explore. I mean, the movement I'm using is pretty abstract---its just the context and the props, and some of the energy behind it that gives it meaning, so I think that they can change the meaning through thier performance somehow. This is my puzzle I guess... The final issue I'm working on is the music. The music I want for the middle of the piece is kind of short. I might have to cut some movement, speed up certain parts, and work on how I want to overlap the duets, so there will be lots of trial and error in rehearsal at that point. I'm pretty excited!
Rodya: Rodya was already finished, but I got some great feedback from Stephanie the last time I went back to NH, and I'm going to work on performance of the piece especially. Amanda doesn't know all of the choreography yet, but she has a good start, and Andrea is coming home in a matter of days!!!! Yaya! So we can begin working with those details. This piece is all about movement quality, so I think that I will really need to be a hard ass and work in an extremely detailed way, on every movement. But I'm excited to have that to work on, because the piece is just really fun.
Wake Me When Its Over: Well, section one is complete, and Jackie videoed it for us (http://s67.photobucket.com/albums/h309/superhotlilangel/?action=view¤t=100_5698.flv). I am dancing Andrea's part in this video, and it's not full out, because there are some things that I can't do, which Andrea can (because she's tiny and I don't want to break Karen before my first big show). Karen and I worked on section two (The Nightmare) last night, and I've been working on the rest of the piece in my head. Having Andrea back will make this work a little bit better. I shared the video with the composer (David Ross), so he can have an idea what the sections are like and how long etc. This is the newest piece and I think its going to be really fun, and exciting for the audience. And I also think it might break my body, which is unfortunate, but I'll sacrifice it all for art:)
The last really fun thing is that Reggie and I are working on a comic duet for the show! Since all of my choreography is really heavy, this seems like a lot of fun. We have this really fun and fantastic music and we're working with this concept that hi-lites our differences as dancers, and the differences in our appearance as well. We have this great Bill T and Arnie Zane thing going on, size-wise.
So, that's that, we're on a roll!