COOKBOOK FOR THE BONEHOUSE:

Improvisation Strategies for Performing Artists

This workshop takes a playful and strategic approach to movement, voice and performance. Over the past twenty-five years, I have developed a cookbook of wild play recipes to challenge and focus dancers.

My particular approach is grounded in teaching fresh and challenging improvisation and composition strategies, helping dancers and performance artists discover their own unique impulses for movement. By cultivating a vibrant improvisational practice students learn to connect the inner landscape of the body with outer expression and form. This class is for dancers, actors and movers at all levels. Classes may include some or all of the following:

  • SOURCEWORK: Movement exercises and strategies that enhance awareness, clarity, and feeling in the mover and deepen receptivity to the inner landscape of sensation and movement impulse. These include specific attention strategies and A Thousand Voices - a "chunking down" practice that brings greater clarity and differentiation to the body.

  • SOMATIC INQUIRY: Based on the concepts of Body-Mind Centering, somatic inquiry investigates the inner landscape of the body and plays with the relationship between the container and the contents in the context of improvisation.

  • BODYSCAPE/LANDSCAPE: Learning to hold and expand awareness of the relationship between our inner somatic landscape and the outer landscapes that surround us; how to experience inner and the outer worlds simultaneously and shorten the commute between the two, making our transitions between them more seamless and conscious.

  • DEEP LISTENING: Based on the work of long-time collaborator Pauline Oliveros, these strategies expand choices, focus and dynamism in performance. Oliveros describes Deep Listening as listening with your whole body.

  • LABAN MOVEMENT ANALYSIS (LMA): Developed by Rudolf Laban, LMA helps dancers to explore non-habitual, "out-of-the-box" spatial, dynamic and body-level choices. It offers movers in all disciplines an expanded expressive palette for improvisation and choreography.

  • AUTHENTIC MOVEMENT: A meditative, intuitive improvisational movement practice involving a mover and a witness. With eyes closed, maintaining a focus on bodily sensation and the flow of consciousness, movers allows themselves to be moved by whatever impulses are arising from the body.

    "Paula's teaching was inspiring, insightful and unadorned. She immediately engaged the students with clear and imaginative instructions and precise prompts. Her class was a powerful experience of movement in the moment. We are deeply grateful to Paula for having shared with us so generously her wisdom, knowledge and experience."
    Kalya Yannatos,The Putney School, Putney, VT

    Contact Paula about workshops and performances.