The full schedule is available here.
Let’s examine what makes lyrical fusion just that, lyrical. We’ll listen to music and put the aesthetic it inspires into our bodies through a combination of ballet, contemporary dance, and body mechanics exercises. We’ll play with our shapes, lines, and sense of swoop!
What is it about a gritty blues song that makes you want to gyrate your hips? Or an old-school swing song that makes you want to bounce? Or a sultry tango that makes your legs stretch and fly? Different types of music contain different musical elements that beg our bodies to change their movement. This class will explore these subtle and not-so-subtle differences, and play with fun ways to express them.
Quality of Movement – Balance and Centering
Time to unlock the secret of perfect balance. Join us in this class as we delve into what exactly is going on in our body when we do that perfect, single axis spin, or stop our movement on a dime. Through a series of exercises and games we’ll hone and test our balancing skills until they are rock solid.
Quality of Movement – Ease of Movement
Let’s unlock the secret of easy, effortless movement! In this class, we’ll delve into the internal body mechanics of our every movement. Every step, arm raise, head turn, we’ll use a combination of imagery, exercises and games to make our movement easier and more efficient, so we really can dance the night away.
Quality of Movement – Grounding
In Blues, as well as in life in general, we gain our strength and stability first and foremost from the ground we walk on. This class will focus on a handful of techniques that will allow us to sink in, connect with the floor, and use that connection to add power to our movement.
The Shape of Switching
While there are many different ways to experience that enticing moment of ‘oh, you’re leading now!’, shaping and rhythms are one of the most subtle. We’ll play with the minute layers of the dance, and increase our sensitivity to who’s leading, who’s following, and who’s idea was that rhythm change anyway?
Build Your Best Beginner Class (Teaching and Scene Building Class)
What exactly makes for a killer beginner class? What is it about them that get beginners to come back that second time? In this class, we’ll identify the goals and win conditions of an ideal beginner class, then work together to help build the best one for your dance scene.
Public Speaking (Teaching and Scene Building Class)
Public speaking is really hard: people are more afraid of speaking in front of a crowd than death, which means people would rather be in the coffin than delivering the eulogy. Here we’ll go distill some top-notch public speaking training into an hour of tools and tricks to improve confidence. I’ve actually taken proper classes in public speaking once upon a time, and combined with teaching experience I think this would be a really fun class to do.
It takes an artist to be a dancer, but it takes an athlete to dance. This class works to improve quality of movement through conditioning core, strength, and flexibility. Take this class to strengthen your dancing at any level. Bring comfortable clothes you can sweat in.
Isolations appear in a wide range of dance styles, including blues, African, hip-hop, and even classical styles such as Modern. In this class, we’ll work on isolations and how to do them well — first incorporating isolations into signature solo moves from Blues and African dances, then dancing with a partner and discussing how to communicate isolations to another person. Since this category of movement spans so many genres, a working knowledge of isolations can exponentially expand the vocabulary of your dance in any style.
Rhythmic Delights (Advanced)
This class takes patting your head and rubbing your tummy to a whole new level. Here we will sync dancer movement with a song’s rhythm by covering many rhythmic patterns common to Blues. We will explore pulse, polyrhythms, and syncopated movement in greater detail. Not for the faint of heart — a lot of material will be covered rapidly in this class.
Speaking Volumes With a Whisper
When the band brings it down, it’s your turn to bring it up: learn how to rock the slow or quiet music. We will explore that yummy, gooey embrace connection and the fluid, seamless movement of good slow dancing. Find the dynamic range of micro-dancing and use it to say a whole lot by doing hardly anything at all.
Get ready to groove that body with a class of soulful and funky blues. Never get lost again when the beat gets janky and learn how to wow your partner when a smooth slow jam comes on. We’ll show you how to find a natural body movement that fits perfectly to a range of soulful tunes.
The Zen of Blues Movement
Time to get out of your head and into your body! Unlock a new level of creativity and awareness through repetitive dance movement. Through meditative exercises, we will find the power of repetitive movement and its applications in Blues through building awareness and creative variations. It’s all about going with the flow.
Annette and Eran
We’ll take this bone-chillingly beautiful alliance of the sacred and the profane as a canvas to work on building and re-directing energy in our body, on contrasting it with gritty grounded-ness and on having so much continuous flow that it’ll make the Mississippi jealous!
Ravishing Rhythms (Advanced)
Get ready for an hour chock-full of independent and connected rhythms with a healthy dose of connection technique that will take your dancing to the next level! This fast-paced class is aimed at experienced blues dancers and will provide ample opportunity for you to make your footwork and other rhythmic dance choices feel effortless in partnership while also working on contributing something unique to the dance in a smooth manner.
Full Body Groovin’
In this class we’ll re-explore our chests and hips and shake ‘em on down into 3D movement! Relaxed body isolations are key for a well-rounded dance, especially when the music is asking for more than just stepping in rhythm. Get ready for athletic and grounded full body movement that feels and looks good from every angle.
Welcome to the Blues Theatre!
Out of the brain, into the body – learn how to unleash the creative beast in you one exercise at the time! Want more playfulness and ease in your dancing? More creative interplay with your partner? To engage every fiber of your body when dancing? To enjoy every dance? If you answered any of these questions with yes and dare to embrace your inner silly, we wholeheartedly welcome you to the Blues Theatre!
Building it up with the Drama Llama
Have been dancing the blues for a while now? Feel like challenging yourself? Meet the Drama Llama of blues dancing who’s here to inspire you! Unlike ordinary drama llamas, the bluesy drama llama knows how to ̶s̶̶p̶̶i̶̶t̶ add its dose of drama onto the dance floor in a deliberate, gradient way and it will help you add some serious dynamics to your dancing, too. Build your dance up from the ground and mold yourself into the dynamic structure of the blues!
Wait For It… (Advanced)
Not for the faint of heart, this class is a communication challenge for both leads and follows alike! Creative your own organic dance adventure with your partner by learning how to give and take space, how to seamlessly redirect energy and by….wait for it…taking lots and lots of time to enjoy any movement to its last delicious drop.
Anyway You Wanna Let It Roll
“You got me runnin’, you got me hidin’
You got me run, hide, hide, run
Anyway you wanna let it roll
Yeah, yeah, yeah”
Jimmy Reed knew it: Anyway you wanna let it roll is good in our book! Expect to drill travelling moves yet to be named that will give both leads and follows the tools to build and re-directing momentum in a way that creates opportunities for individual expression.
From Idea to Exercise: How to Build Class Content (Teaching and Scene Building Class)
You have an idea of what you want to teach – now let’s get to work and come up with concrete exercises and methods to get your point across. From “I want people to listen to the music!” to a class on blues music structure for dancing. Or: How to break down anything!
Connecting Your Solo Vocabulary (2 part class) (Advanced)
We will focus on solo dance vocabulary, taking historical blues moves and morphing them into sets of related movements with clear progressions. You will be able to see how these integral movements are related to each other, as well as gain tools for practicing vocabulary on your own. The best part is time to play, so you can make these movements your own!
Struttin’ (2 part class)
Come strut your stuff! Struttin’ is a style of blues danced to faster music with a strong downbeat, and focuses on close embrace connection and footwork. Learn the moves and concepts to keep this deceptively simple dance interesting and fun.
Footwork for Modern Country Blues
Modern Country Blues is modern blues music inspired by the country sounds of bluegrass and jug bands. It is full of chunky beats and percussive finger-picking string instruments, which makes it great for playing with footwork. We’ll show you some fun variations that you can take into both your solo and partnered dancing.
Grooving versus Smoothing
Music is like an onion, or a parfait. It has layers…there are instruments responsible for percussion and timekeeping, others for melody and lyricism. Adventure on the dance floor happens when we begin exploring the dynamic layers of rhythm and melody through our movement and connection. Can you switch between them? Can you layer them?
Straight Lines or Curved Lines?
When you think about it, all dance can be broken down into two things: straight lines & curved lines. Everything we do is either one or the other. Taking the idea of directional connection even further, let’s explore why we would want our dance to be either straight or curved and the techniques behind it.
Imagery & self-care
How do you get the most out of a festival weekend? Learn tools to take care of your body, observe how your mindset affects your ability to learn, and discover the power of imagery – using your brain to help rather than hinder you!
The spine is composed of 24 vertebrae creating almost 100 articulations! Discover how you can lead clearly and follow fluidly by using the deep muscles of your spine. Side effects: the pleasure of a freely moving spine and a released lower back.
Relax your shoulders, liberate your neck! After working and partying hard all weekend, give your muscles some love and learn how to move your arms from your back – until they become fluid and light like octopus arms!
Blues Roots (Three part workshop)
The souls and stories of Blues are the roots of the passion of the dance. You will be able to explore these through a fun energetic class building on your own muscle movement, isolations and rhythms to give you a greater choice of expression to the music you know and love on the dance floor. These roots classes will bring all this richness of movement and soul into your dance.
- First workshop will explore Danza – A traditional dance from Mali
- Second workshop will explore Sabar – A traditional dance from Senegal
- Third workshop will explore Lamba – A traditional Guinean dance.
It is not necessary to take all the workshop classes.
Have you ever been on the dance floor and just wanted to find that little bit extra something to express how you feel to the music you are hearing and not quite had the dance vocabulary to do it? This class will offer you tools to fuse two or more styles of dance to build your creativity.
This choreo works on the theme of water and fluid movements to bring that flow into our dance. Our bodies need water to grow, feel fresh and live. If you are aspiring to work with your quality of movement then this one is for you.
Fusion of Contemporary and Afro. This class will invite participants to explore creativity, use of the space and create their own rhythm.
Blues class combined with traditional Rumba movements. This class will offer fluid movement with accent, and dynamic changes to give you that little extra something. A fun class with lots of movement to get those hips working!
Women and the Blues
It’s no coincidence that the first blues singers on record were all women. it seems highly likely that the blues format as we know it was created by women – all of the first descriptions we have of the blues before WC Handy’s famous incident at Tutweiler, are of women singing it. How did this come to be? What role did women play in the development of the blues? And how and why were they pushed to the sidelines?
History of Boogie
It started out as rough and ready dance music for rough and rowdy men in northeast Texas, then rode the rails to New Orleans, to Chicago – and then it took over American popular music and the whole world. How did the train imitations of down and out music achieve all that? The story is far more tangled than you imagine…
For the skill share descriptions, please click here: Skill shares