Tomos on working with Theo Clinkard
Tomos writes about the day Theo Clinkard came into the studio and worked with Stopgap
Sg2 have had a very busy week so far, with a performance in Slough at the Creative Academy performing Exhibition, teaching our Youth Company sessions and rehearsing.
In the midst of all these different elements we had the opportunity to take part in a wonderful workshop run by choreographer/dancer Theo Clinkard.
What a fantastic day. Between structured led improvisation to set sequences, my body came to acknowledge new areas that I haven’t looked at for a while. To be able to put the choreography of Exhibition down for a day and focus on your own movement. Focus, this was a reoccurring word throughout the day. we as dancers can become vacant in our focus and gaze, and readjusting this can lead to finding new reaches, new physical planes, between the inner and outer kinespheres.
Connecting to audiences and leading them on a journey, this is probably quite accurate at present as Exhibition is set in an intimate space and the audience members are almost on top of us. Our eyes, our physical presence, our every intention is scrutinised so the level of commitment to the movement is heightened.
I found myself exploring the smallest of movement within a group and how the slightest of moves has consequences upon the rest of the group, therefore enabling the group’s movement to continue growing to its extremities while the initiation trickles down. Listening to each other, understanding each other, trusting and allowing for what we would think of as “ugly” comes across as splendid to watch.
The tasks we were presented with were all used to create Theo Clinkard’s piece Ordinary Courage and we had the opportunity at the end of the day to learn set rep from the piece. The piece was created on 6 non-disabled dancers, so we looked for translations for the rep, and it was a wonderful process for us and for Theo himself as well (I believe), as he was almost re-choreographing the work. I think we managed to give him some new lines to delve into as well as possible questions that arose that he may want to attempt to answer.
I do hope I'lI have the chance to either participate in a workshop led by him again or even be in a process one day with him, he is a fantastic individual.
It was a wonderful day full of laughter, exploration, real movement and growth.