Readings (“What is choreographic thinking?” by Karinne Keithley Syers and Some Rules & Hints for Students & Teachers by John Cage)
For the Syer’s reading, I wasn’t particularly found of her overall writing style, it made it hard to follow. However, she did make some points that I feel correlate with what I try to achieve while choreographing. I feel that with choreographing for the public audience there’s an obsession with coming out with something new and fresh, something that is impressive and people have never seen before. I feel that if a choreographer puts themself in this mindset, they veer away from doing something that they truly want to do. Syer talks a lot about pleasure and remaining simple/open-minded during the choreographic process. By remaining open/simple, I feel that you allow your work to become more accessible. This sort of approach shouldn’t diminish the fact that even though you may approach something simply, you won’t encounter any road blocks. Choreographing is a difficult process and takes time and patience. Ultimately, with approaching choreography with an open heart, mind, and with simplicity, you are helping to foster genuine personal growth throughout the process and you won’t simply be making something for people to see in public.
Moreover, I really enjoyed the straight forwardness of Cage’s rules and hints. I will be sure to try to keep in mind all of his listings, but particularly rules numbers 5 and 7. These rules pretty much encourage you to be self discipline and to work steadily. I need to pay attention to these rules because it is extremely easy to get caught up in required readings, papers, and assignments for other classes. I know I need to set aside a special time to be able to consistently generate/refine material.
As I am in the early stages of my journey I am trying my best to keep my mind and heart open to any ounce of inspiration. Also, I’ve been trying to be internally alert about where I truly want my choreography to go. I know for one thing that it has to say something, anything. Currently, I’ve been thinking a lot about womanhood, femininity, what it means to be a girl, a black girl. Stereotypes, agency, power, powerlessness. It’s very broad so far and it’s taking more time than I’ve anticipated to focus in. Right now, I’m trying to test out ideas associated with the female figure and gendered behavior. Again, it is very broad, but I’m enjoying the process.
Prior to returning back to school I spent a lot of time reading bell hook’s Feminism is for Everybody, Gloria Naylor’s The Women of Brewster Place, watching The Real L Word…just soaking up a lot of women oriented material to get myself questioning what are the societal definitions for what it means to be a woman and how we should act and how these definitions are either challenged or embraced. It’s a COMPLEX topic, but I’m enjoying exploring it. It is helping me a lot to reflect on myself and my actions.
As for now, I’m going to continue to collect more text and media to help me to get more attuned to the subject. I feel that it will help me as I continue to generate more material. Below I have attached a link to some movement I’ve been experimenting with…