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Written in the body: reflections on encounters with somatic practices in postgraduate dance training

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Abstract:

This article tracks my exploration of the somatic practices as a postgraduate dance student, set against the background of my previous experience and my journey to this place through conventional dance training. Personal reflections and journal writings are combined with a more formal definition and discussion of the somatic practices and their application to dance training and performance, with particular reference to the Alexander Technique and Body-Mind Centering. What emerges is a personal record of the shifts in my thinking/moving that were necessary to realize fully what the somatic practices have to offer, both in dance and life. It also charts the struggle and frustrations as well as the delights and discoveries that I encountered in this rite of passage.

Keywords: Alexander Technique; Body-Mind Centering; dance training; reflective writing; somatic practices

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1386/jdsp.1.2.215_1

Affiliations: Coventry University.

Publication date: 2009-12-01

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  • This journal focuses on the relationship between dance and somatic practices, and the influence of this body of practice on the wider performing arts. The journal will be aimed at scholars and artists, providing a space for practitioners and theorists to debate the work, to consider the impact and influence of the work on performance, the interventions that somatic practices can have on other disciplines and the implications for research and teaching.
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