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Re: dancing loops
Matthias, excellent post! -I like contact improv, but on the dancers'
side of it. I've not played for one, but have thought for some time of
incorporating it into my own live performance, in the form of interpretive
dance and such, but being teathered to guitar, mic, controllers and such is
not real conducive to it. ICK!!! lol!
In your case, have you thought possibly of giving the dancers noise-maky
thingies and sampling them as they move? It might be nice to loop what
comes out of that. I like moving in rhythm with noisy bracelets or bells
or such. It's a lot of fun, and can be quite musical.
Anyway, -just some thoughts, and again, wonderful post, thanks for
sharing it. Have a wonderful weekend!...
At 07:55 PM 9/19/02 -0300, you wrote:
>In all cultures people danced to music and music was needed to dance.
>There are many ways it can happen though:
>Most frequently the musician plays in a place where anyone can dance.
>I hardly did that, so I will not talk about it.
>In African religions, each Saint can be called with a specific rhythm
>and incorporates in a dancer. Although I admire such "radical" use of
>music, I keep rather distant from it. Still, we have to consider the
>trance nature of dancing! It may also happen if we are not quite
>aware of the Saints we call "by accident"...
>Sometimes we manage a job to compose music for a given scene and movement.
>I have done this, and found it very interesting, but its rather work
>for the computer than for real time looping.
>I want to talk about what I know reasonably well: Improv with dancers
>Looping is perfect for that, because it provides a precise repetitive
>part they can rely on and the freedom for the musician to illustrate
>the interpretations of the dancers.
>It starts at the dancing lessons. I think many musicians could do
>that. Its not so demanding in the details and a brilliant way to
>practice, since you immediately see what you do! ** You have a public
>of artists ** ! Dancers are used to understand music and will extract
>the useful part of what you do.
>Even if you dont play very well, as soon as you manage to follow the
>instructions of the leader of the group, setup some rhythm at the
>right speed and start and stop decently when its needed, you are more
>useful than CDs.
>If you can also interpret some of the details of the movement, they
>love you! Just put some accent where arms flow in the air, a quick
>line where they run, a dark sound when they are on the floor... with
>time you go deeper...
>If you can also feel the mood of the movement and put the right sound
>and can do smooth changes from one mood to the other to create a
>story, you deserve payment :-)
>Then the real improv starts: Interaction as you know it from playing
>with other musicians, only that you are free to change harmonies and
>themes as you please. Suddenly the feeling comes up that no one
>follows the others yet all are together in one story!
>I played for contact improvisation off and on for over a year now.
>More and more it turns into a ritual, the story becomes more dynamic,
>people let go their craziness. Its incredible refreshing also for me!
>Now I have been called again to improve a modern dance piece about
>Peace I recorded the music for a while ago. The choreographer, former
>diva at the city theater for 15 years, started to become interested
>in improv. Before, she symbolized Peace as a flower, a mandala, a
>complex circular arrangement of the dancers with a complex loop I
>built according the form. It was beautiful, but now she sees Peace
>not so organized and "heavy" any more, rather free, happy, light... I
>could not agree more and supported her impression that this was best
>expressed through improvisation. Now, what surprised all of us: The
>dancers that were almost afraid of the improvisation learned to let
>go in only 10 minutes!
>There is a trick to it: Start with some nicely educated loop and let
>them all show how good they are. After a while they feel that this
>does not lead anywhere, and you can follow this feeling by letting
>the music fall down into some strange chaos which leaves space for
>their unwill and depression. So there they start to let go. From
>there the real thing can grow and usually most participants come
>syncronized out of the chaos!
>Respectfully slowly abandon the original directions and restrictions
>more and more while they like it, until you are totally free to fool
>around. At the end of the second session they all built a pile in the
>center and burst out in laughter!
>Then they started saying that they dont want to study anything fixed
>any more, just enjoy...
>And you feel reeeealy useful ! :-)
> ---> http://Matthias.Grob.org
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