The Thinking Body in Dance. A somatic R.E.A.C.H. (2020-2024)
Research in Electronic and Algorithmic Choreography
This research project focuses on dance epistemology, as it deals with dance as the aesthetic expression of corporeal thinking. The goal of this research is more specifically to investigate how somatic practices and technology can mutually enhance each other in order to develop techniques for dance improvisation. As such, it will specify how dancers make decisions in an improvisation and when the instant of composing takes place.
Somatic practices use improvisation to train sensitivity and reactivity of dancers. However, they often still miss the tools to grasp the fleeting nature of its knowledge production through visualization, improvisation, and verbal reflection. In dance education too there is a need for specific techniques to support corporeal thinking. Somatic R.E.A.C.H. will make embodied cognitive processes (which are often tacit and implicit) more concrete by revising a somatic practice for the nervous system.
By developing new software (MAXmsp), the research practice can experiment with the implicit knowledge production of dancers and gain control over principles of improvised composition to expand the consciousness of cognition in dancers. These electronic choreographies, mediated in-ear or on monitors, train the decision-making in improvisation through live-generated tasks. By thus integrating composition in somatic practices we can reconsider the principles of somatic research: self-inwardness, solitary technics, soft and slow dynamics, and synthesis through storytelling.