Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Gearing Up for EDC: A Few Words From Our Choreographers (Part 3)

It all comes down to this: an entire semester's worth of work into 4 performances.  As we prepare to launch into tech week, the Emory Dance Company choreographers (students of the Choreography II class) have each written a few words about their inspiration, their choreographic process, and the development of their works.

Courtesy of ViVi Photography
Heidi Liu, Senior

My choreographic process began with a single concept when I discovered an article detailing a place off the Alaskan coastline where two seas of different densities collide, bodies of water lying adjacent to each other but unable to join.  This eternal dichotomy struck me as fascinating and perhaps a bit tragic as well.  From there, I began to experiment with how different movement styles and, certainly, different dancers can share space, time, and soundscape but be inextricably separate.

Courtesy of
My movement style is full-bodied and places a heavy emphasis on technique.  Building upon that, I encouraged my dancers to test the limits of their performance habits.  The making of my piece, appropriately titled “Seas of Different Densities”, allowed my dancers a lot of room to create their own variations of a core phrase that I taught them.  The process has been one dependent on collaboration between my cast and me.  Their willingness to challenge the choreography I gave them as well as make drastic changes at half a moment’s notice has allowed me to gradually realize the full potential of my movement.

The dancing in my piece is inspired by water.  It knows the fluidity with which a body of water moves within itself, beyond itself.  It understands the patience of the Pacific Ocean but also the overwhelming power of the sea.  Though accredited as the choreographer of the piece, I sincerely feel that my dancers played just as prominent a role in the making of this dance as I did.  Their input and unique perspectives on my movement has allowed my work to transcend something that I can contain alone.  Rather, this piece has become a joining of many different seas, perhaps of different densities.  Together but separate, it embodies the spirit of that magical place off the Alaskan coast where two seas of different densities collide.

Thanks, Heidi!

Don't miss the Emory Dance Company Spring Showcase, Tabula Rasa.  Click here for more details.

For more information on the Emory Dance Program, please go to our website.

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