Class Description: Drawing on release techiniques and Contact Improvisation, this class will be a structured frame to start your day with. We will start on the floor with a gentle somatic-based warm up that will help the body to feel gravity. Growing from the floor to standing, we will practice smothing out our tansitions into upright dancing. There won’t be any partner work. Contact skills of reach, push, pull, fall, sluff, glide and roll will all be empoyed, using the floor as your loyal partner. The goal is an aware, alert, and embodied presence that uses the full capacity of the dancer as a human being awake in the word. More sensitivity is reached through relaxing the nervous system. More alterness is reached through waking up the mind to moment-by-moment choice making. More embodyment is reached through a deep listneing to the relationship to the earth, each other, and the space around us This class will include some set excercises and some structured improvisation. You will sweat!
Jennifer McLeish-Lewis has been a teacher of Contact Improvisation since 2006. Since 2002 she has studied and has had an ongoing practice under master improviser and contact dancer Peter Bingham. She has also trained with international teachers such as Ray Chung, Andrew Harwood, Chris Aiken and Karl Frost. Jennifer was a performer from 2002- 2012 with the contact based company MACHiNENOiSY in Vancouver, directed by Delia Brett and Daelik, performing in works inspired and underpinned by Contact Dance. In 2005 Jennifer was a performer in Karl Frost's improvised participatory performance, Axolotl, a show that toured the west coast of Canada and the U.S.A. She taught at Leviathan Studio in 2012 and 2013, and was a guest teacher at the Elsewhere Canadian Improvisation Festival in 2013. Her unwavering commitment to Contact Improvisation has lead her to teach classes and workshops in Vancouver, Victoria, Lasquiti Island, Calgary, Cortes Island, Zagreb (Croatia) and Nanaimo. As a student of EDAM and Peter Bingham, Jennifer takes her place in the linage as third generation to the originators and innovators of this postmodern partnering form.
*Photo credit: Justine Warrington