somatic interventions in choreographic practices
This article aims to articulate how collaborative choreographic processes can be informed through somatic educational practices. Focusing on the Feldenkrais Method® (FM), the author elucidates how this trans-disciplinary dialogue offers a bio-psycho-social model of critical artistic inquiry. By leaning on choreographic research ‘Body/Soma/Self’ and artistic play undertaken between 2004 and 2011, the essay gives an insight into the development of FM-informed performance-making practices. The author discusses creative process development from a practitioner perspective while offering contextual debate with reference to the fields of ‘Release’ (O’Donnell 2010) and ‘Social Choreography’ (Hewitt 2005; Klien 2009). By placing FM in the context of performance-making, this article aims to make a distinct contribution to the emerging field of ‘somatic-informed’ choreographic practices (Brown 2011). The author explicates how Feldenkrais-informed interventions offer the development of preparatory processes, kinaesthetic tuning scores, choreographic vocabulary development and choreographic structuring strategies. The transfer of the Feldenkrais Method into performance-making—a process-of-enquiry within a process-of-enquiry—is discussed as a complex system involving a large number of interacting agents, allowing for conditions of uncertainty, ambiguity, and emergent nonlinear causalities while offering an empowering corporeal tool for process-participants.
The essay also discusses how the Feldenkrais Method offers micro-choreographic processes to offer creative modalities of self-inquiry through the combination of application of de-familiarisation devices, logic in compositional structuring of lessons, and the use of touch and verbal instruction. The article indicates how the use of FM as an intersubjective tool for choreographic intervention can support shared decision-making processes. Within such context, the role of the choreographer is understood as facilitator of conditions for co-creation and an ‘embodied choreographic questioning’ (Kampe 2013), which supports alternatives to the ‘myth of the lone genius of the artist’ (Montuori 2011) as a contemporary mode of choreographic enquiry and production.