Well, it has been an unusual holiday season! Anyone else feeling like 2020 just blurred in to 2021? Before ploughing forward into the freshness of 2021, it feels appropriate to take a step back and re-centre. The past year threw a lot of challenges, changes and new ideas to the forefront… and it is unlikely that 2021 will be much different, though we are quietly hopeful for positive change soon.
It is often overlooked, the power of pause and reflection. That deep breath before diving in. Reminding yourself of what brought you here and what you need to move forward. Rest and reflection as a form of self-care is perhaps what is needed before launching into another new year full of unknowns. Also, the need and importance of collective care and rest has been highlighted by the disproportionate affect the pandemic has had on the disabled community.
As dancers and performers pause and reflection can be helpful to tune in to how we feel in our bodies and recognise where we need to direct our attention and care. Returning to our foundations, listening to a track that moves you or getting grounded and reacquainted with your body could be the most useful self-care at the moment.
Whilst we are very excited to show off our snazzy new trailer for the new season of Home Practice (watch it via the link at the end of this blog) we realise that people may need to rediscover their dancing body again. So, we wanted to guide you to our Groundwork series. Released in September 2020, Groundwork forms the foundation of our Home Practice programme. From learning material and language, to improvisation and translation, these videos are insightful and invite you to revisit or introduce yourself to inclusive contemporary dance fundamentals.
This set of four videos are designed to support you with the Home Practice classes by sharing explanations, explorations and tips in engaging with our online dance sessions.
First Words of Inclusive Contemporary Dance by Lucy Bennett looks at terminology and the language that teachers may use in contemporary dance classes.
Learning Material and Mapping Movement by Amy Butler focuses on approach and analysis to aid with on screen learning.
Improvisation and Exploration by Tom Goodwin shares different improvisation, movement research and exploration methods.
Translation Tools by Laura Jones introduces skills needed to translate movement from someone with a different physicality to your own.
All of these provide a chance to reassess where you are and reset your body in preparation for the new season. You may have taken time away from moving over the holiday and can feel the need to start again slowly, these sessions offer a re-introduction to dance in lockdown. It is important to prepare your mind and body for a change, especially during fragile times externally in the world and internally within yourself.Our new season promises to be exciting, with new teachers, new topics and so many bright ideas for everyone – not just professional dancers – to try at home. Whether you dance purely for joy, or are looking to deepen your understanding of dance, the new season takes the best of last year and the enthusiasm of the year to come.
We hope to hear from you in the comments on our YouTube channel, we always try to respond to any questions you may have, and our teachers love reading what you took from their classes.