I would like to be precise about all the arguments I used up until the moment I found my transcultural body, which was achieved by the movement research process “the subjectivity and objectivity of the body” (Breuss 2014). The result of this was a solo piece named BREAK.
The starting point was body, woman, and space. After various researching processes, my movement was making me ask questions about the images I was creating, as these body organisations were not normal in me. The internal view about the body shapes, was giving me information about body memories coming from my first technique. I was jumping 20 years ago, at the time that I was starting my Spanish dance classes at the School of Music and Dance in Spain.
The steps, energies, and tempos from this time were suddenly appearing, and giving me inspiration to go further with it.
These were the elements I found; for sure it´s possible to read it in a contemporary way, and it can look like a modern dance technique, but there were actually differences in the intentionality, densities, energies, rhythms, and the kind of character we bring inside to the kinetic shapes. I don´t want to make a comparative study between Spanish dance technique and modern dance technique, because this is a big universe, and it´s not the point for now. But I can make a short reference about the steps that I found connected with the Spanish dance.
These are my movements:
- Low centre connected to earth.
- Straight back well connected with the vertical plane.
- Importance on the articulation of hands and arms in space.
- Simplicity, specificity, and movement clarity, in upper extremities as well as lower.
- Interest for detailed forms.
- Movement with rhythmic accents, and fast direction changes in the pathway.
- Inclined upper part of the torso, in other words, going out of the vertical plane.
- Rhythmic game with the different parts of the feet.
- Movement style out of the body’s amplitude, especially of the torso and upper extremities.
- Intensity in movement, provoked by an intention of extreme communication.
- Knee flexion, touching the floor with back extension.
Now, I will offer a short explanation about the”Bailes” connected with Spanish Dance technique that I consider are related with the movements I found.
“Baile de cintura para arriba” (woman) and “Baile de cintura para abajo” (man), (Pablo & Navarro, 2007, p.19-20) these dances are connected with flamenco, more than escuela bolera, folklore or danza estilizada/clásical Spanish.
“Baile de cintura para arriba”, which means “dance from the waist up”, had to be exquisite, full of grace, delicacy and elegance. A winged dance in which the arms would draw the most delicate lines and forms in the air, finished by hands that would move like doves. A dance that would be rich in adornments. A dance with specific “zapateados” (feet stomping) in which the hips give the note of sensuality.
“Baile de cintura para abajo”, which in turn means “dance from the waist down”, is a dance of the feet, a dance of strength. A more sober dance, respecting the verticality of the spine, where there is arm movement but the fingers are not usually moved much. There is a certain harmony in the feet, arms, and head. Dancing grounded, which means without jumps, or “molino” turns (windmill turns). Then, we can find similarities between my movements and both proposals. Considering like this connection within my body and the flamenco technique.
On another topic, that I found connected with the actual Spanish dance technique was my sexual ambiguity. Because, my steps were connected with “dance from the waist up” and “dance from the waist down”, giving the opportunity to refer my dance as a “bailaora” from the 21st century “the bailaora, as the general woman in all aspects of life, has made her forms and steps that up until recently, were reserved for the man” (Pablo & Navarro, 2007, p.20-21).
Then it became clear that the visual memory (which describes the relationship between perceptual processing and the encoding, storage and retrieval of the resulting neural representations) awakened a corporal language which had been discarded for lack of necessity.
This way of working made me connect to my past, through my present, and made my body able to create a series of corporal constellations which are different to the ones it usually transits in; finding reason in the way of approaching movement, its beginnings and its endings, its path in space as well as the exposed intention behind it.
It was very interesting to observe that as the solo developed, new body sensations and emotional experiences connected with my historical body memory were arising. The whole work process was a change of the unconscious into consciousness.
Through my “subjective body”, I was able to re-discover my transcultural Spanish vocabulary, redefine my technique, objective body.
This connection to my “subjective body” was very surprising; I never thought I would work on energies, evolutions of steps or intentions that reflected this dance character and also the possibility to be associated to my “subjective body”. This is an important point to understand, since I was asking myself: why was my “subjective body” waking up this technique?
I think my emotions were talking to my body and this was transformed in actions related with my Spanish dance knowledge. In a way, my culture decided to go outside through the technique that feels confident, because it has the necessity to express something. And the best way to express the idea was taking the Spanish dance knowledge that I have. “Man can manifest more and more of himself, as he develops in his evolution and perfects vehicles to a more and more developed conscience” ,Annie Besant ( Besant ,1980, P.34). The better we understand our “different bodies”, the more the path of our learning process will improve.
With this entire process I was developing into other person, my body understood that it was full of “sediments”, and that it was time to re-discover and to establish a different view of them. It was time to use and to transform my transcultural body knowledge. Which the developments in the process negotiate between subjective and objective body, embodied and technical dance knowledge of the dancer’s body re-discover subjectivity and objectivity of the body. Discovering like this a specific “transcultural dance vocabulary”.
Concept, Choreography, Text, Dance
Dolma Jover Agulló
In collaboration with Rose Breuss Austria choreographic research laboratory. IDA DANCE LAB und C.O.V. directed by Rose Breuss.
Sound artist Enrique Tomás
- Latinnale 2014 – Kulturfestival in Innsbruck. Austria.
- Actúa Alicante 2014.Spain.
- Tanzhafen Festival- Lentos Museum Linz 2013.
- Tag des Tanzes Festival in Landestheatre Linz.
- Spinnerei Kulturhaus Traun 2013. Austria.
- Tabakwerke Linz Festival 2013. Austria.