Next Choreography 2014-15

Book of Words Session 5

Our book of words for the second session with Robbie Synge. A lovely long improvisation, a transportation into ‘presence’ and some fascinating conversations about why we bother with what we do. Deep! Thank you once again Robbie for being with us – we look forward to catching your new work, ‘Douglas’ at The Place, in April.

Book of Words Session 5 term 2
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Walking Stories revisit

Having moved on to the next term of Making in Next Choreography I find looking back and reflecting on what we’ve already visited or seen is a simple way to refresh my mind and incorporate ideas. Attached is my short visual response to Walking Stories, a walking/choreography trail, one of Charlotte’s own projects which we got to do ourselves in week 2.

I sometimes find that words limit me when I feel least limited. This piece brought up so many ideas and feelings that the best way for me to communicate them was through a visual tunnel. Transporting them into moving motions that create the same response, without having to confine what I took from it with just a few words that don’t quite express the scale for me.

The piece completely transported me. Having never done anything similar, to be skeptical is easy but to be drawn in was much easier and in the end, it’s these different ways of working that inspire me. The piece created a sensitivity and appreciation, there is so much to take for granted and it wasn’t until I was picking up a leaf and placing it down in a different place did I realize the scale of that. I was suddenly exposed to the raw world around me, drawn into connecting with these other people and within myself, taking everything in.

This piece limited no one, instead it challenged and renewed my everyday perceptions.

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Part 2 – Robbie Synge

Lots of interesting stuff from Robbie this week… Raising questions about working solo and individually from within.

Here he’s encouraging participants to reflect on certain behaviours, ways of working, living, being.

What informs your movement? Can you start from meaning? How can you physically inhabit what you feel?





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The importance of playing. Thank you Robbie Synge!

This week I had the absolute pleasure of welcoming Robbie Synge to lead our session, all the way from the Scottish Highlands. And we are lucky enough to have him next week as well. It was fascinating to hear him join up the dots between his love of skate boarding and golf as a child with the choreographic work he is making right now.

We dwelled a lot on what our lifestyle brings to the creative table, how much our location and conditions influence and impact the work we make. Robbie’s experience of working and living in the Highlands of Scotland is a particularly strong example of this. I was struck by how resourceful and independent he is – a feeling of ‘I can make dance work’ – even if I am on my own, without a studio, or anyone to film me, or anyone to talk to… He finds ways to create an environment which is conducive somehow – including making elaborate contraptions of his video camera fixed to a skateboard, attached to a pully that gets knocked by the stick he throws in order that it zooms in as it films the scene he has set up. (Or something like that!) A living, breathing laboratory. I’m not surprised he studied physiology at University.

I was inspired and touched by much of what Robbie shared with us yesterday. I enjoyed hearing his journey towards dance and my journey felt much more boring by comparison – not that it’s a competition! But I couldn’t help wondering how much his collection of studies and experiences which were perhaps physical but not directly dance related have brought significant richness to his current choreographic work.

I was reminded how important PLAY is in our creative work. It is easy for me to get very serious about things – perhaps I’m trying to prove to myself that I’m actually working, not just mucking about. But this session revealed the usefulness of playing – it is what stimulates interest and lets us know where our curiosity really is, rather than where we’re pretending it is!

We had a lot of fun making mess with objects. Setting up little experiments to test. Wondering how we could make an object move us…. I look forward to picking up where we left off next week.

Robbie Synge - playing with objects
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Book of Words Session 3

We attempted making some inroads into this massive, on-going collection of questions
How can we make material that matters?
How can ideas become physical?
Where is the purpose? Is it essential?
What place does intuition have in all this?

Full-on stuff! But pretty important when we’re embarking on making choreographic work.

Here is our book of words from that session

Book of Words Term 2 Session 3
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Moving on to making

Getting it straight– Where I am with Next Choreography…

This week my one to one with Charlotte gave me a realisation on how my opinions and ideas are changing when working in a creative environment/ how I’m developing as a young person involved in the world of dance.

I think this course has taught me to set some time to allow myself to get interested in my own ideas. I’m exited to learn other strategies of making work. But allowing myself time to invest deeply into my scattery brain has made me fascinated in/on/over/under the bridge of ‘dancing’ and ‘not dancing’ people in pieces of choreography.

Now as we move on to our making term with Next Choreography, I have found myself regularly questioning,

‘How do I make spectators feel like they can relate to my work?’
‘Is day to day social interactions the ground work for my work?’
‘Is humour the most effective way to connect with the viewers?’
‘Is there always  a clear divide between ‘dancers’ and ‘non dancers’ when they are moving together?’
‘How important to me is it that my work gets shown to a reasonable sized audience?’

While I have had the chance to indulge in my thoughts and interests, it means that seeds have been planted for making work. And I’m glad that I have found the confidence to go purse these ideas.

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Book of Words – Term 2 starting!

It’s 2015, and we’re back! This term we’re delving into making. I’m hoping our time will be packed with experiments and realisations. Our first session on 6th January focussed on choreographic structures. Tonight we’ll be thinking about content – creating material that matters. It’s important stuff.

Here’s our book of words from 6th January. We forgot to do it last week…eek!  (so caught up in giving feedback to the members of NC who are performing for the Connect and Grow Private View this thursday 22nd January)

Book of Words Term 2 session 1
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Next Choreography girls rehearse for Connect and Grow exhibition private view…

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Emily, Emily and Aura in action – rehearsing for their performance next week at Siobhan Davies Dance’s Connect and Grow Exhibition at The Garden Museum.


Drawing inspiration from Sarah Adam’s artwork based upon ‘recognisable features of nature’. Participants have been playing with the idea of human manipulation of patterns in nature….

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