Week 11: Space- General and Personal Space

This week’s tutorial was based on composing dances with a focus on the element of space. The use of a kinaesthetic, auditory and ideational stimulus for the group composition was an effective way of developing creativity in our dances. In a primary classroom, I would focus on one type of stimulus per lesson to ensure students develop a strong understanding of what each one means. These types of stimuli allow us to use dance as a powerful form to change the way we think and Cust (1974) reminds us that creative dance is concerned with ‘movement imagination’ (p. 3) or the ‘kinaesthetic feelings or sensations of fastness, slowness, suddenness, sustainment, strength, lightness’ (Ewing & Gibson, 2011). These kinaesthetic feelings link to Laban’s eight effort actions. Furthermore, the group composition required a range of skills including collaboration and higher order thinking which assists in developing creativity, innovation and forming opinions. Other stimuli teachers could use include a poem that the students are studying, preferably with many active verbs or evocative imagery and ask them to create a series of motions to accompany the poem (ArtsEdge, 2014). This can inspire creative choreography based on both the imagery and rhythm of the poem.

ArtsEdge (2014). Shall We Dance? Foolproof ways to bring dance into your classroom. Retrieved May 20, 2016 from https://artsedge.kennedy-center.org/educators/how-to/tipsheets/shall-we-dance

Ewing, R. & Gibson, R. (2011). Transforming the Curriculum through the Arts. South Yarra: Palsgrave Macmillan.

Annotated video file- Group Composition Video
Title: The Power of Leadership
Subtitle: Divided we fall, United we stand

How has your group composition used the sub strands of SPACE to convey your intent?

  • Pathways- linear pathway of the ‘leader’ charging towards the front to portray that they are in charge
  • Direction- the ‘workers’ face and stomp towards each other to demonstrate their anger at their opposition
  • Dimension/Level- crouching down to a low level before the leader points at each one of us to transition to a high level with an angry gesture
  • Size- ‘Leader’ performs a big dramatic action because she wants the fighting to stop
  • Formation- two lines facing each other and the leader facing the front before turning around to face the ‘workers’
  • Personal space- each person has enough personal space around them to move
  • General space- two parallel lines with everyone equidistant from their opponent; moving towards and away from each other.

What other elements came into play?

  • Dynamics- heavy and direct actions were used to portray the emotion of anger
  • Relationships- fighting between two sides shown by pulling each other back and forth
  • Structure- ordering the different movements to create the narrative and give the piece of work cohesiveness

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