Settling into the Down

Some weeks you’re in the groove. Some weeks you’re not. Tonight I’m feeling decidedly disconnected from the music. I feel like I’m astral projecting above my body as it moves to the rhythm of its own synth. I’m syncopating out of sync. Usually I would feel verklempt about this. Swimming in a frustration of non-connection; …

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Follow from the outside in, dance from the inside out

I haven’t written about dancing in a while yet I’ve been quite inspired by it lately. A lot of my personal practice of late has been focused on following in partner dance. I find the act of following in dance to be quite beautiful from both a participatory and metaphorical sense. It is interesting to …

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Connection without Requirement

In partner dance our physical connection with another dancer can be a point of support, of direction, of communication, and of energy transference. All of these connections have tone, they create a connection from our partner directly to our core. They receive the presence of our partner and give our physical presence in return. However …

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Beginner Classes and Experienced Students

In the dance community many events have a ‘drop-in’ class that is aimed at teaching fundamentals for beginners to help introduce new people to the dance. The classes typically start with the fundamentals of posture and movement and then build in the basic structures of the dance, teach a move, etc. Though the class is …

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Explore it, Then Do it Like You Mean It. Two Stages of Learning.

Anna’s arms extended out into the cut, the point of her sword wavering her body ever so slightly withdrawn, the extension of her arms slightly slack. The motion was essentially correct but every part of it was executed with doubt as if she were exacting over every detail and wondering if she was doing it …

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Room to Experiment

It’s easy in learning to live in a space that moves between the lesson and the performance and thus never truly explore and internalize technique. The dance floor is not the environment that is conducive to building foundational ownership of technique. You need somewhere that is open to active dialog with yourself and your partner. …

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Devon’s European Swordplay Tour

I am going to be in Europe in the month of May from the 1st to the 28th travelling and teaching swordplay at a few different schools and connecting with others as I travel. I’m also planning to connect with the dance scene while I’m on that side of the water. If you know anyone …

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Do It Like You Mean It – 2 Stages of Practice

Anna’s arms extended out into the cut, the point of her sword wavering her body ever so slightly withdrawn, the extension of her arms slightly slack. The motion was essentially correct but every part of it was made with doubt as if she were exacting over every detail and wondering if she was doing it …

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Why Get Better? – Reasons for Mastery

What is your motivation for excelling and improving? Note this is not the question of “why you do this”. There are tons of good reason for that (fun, connection, fitness, etc) but why get better at it? Once you get to a certain level, why pursue greater mastery? One of the most compelling and long …

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Transcending Technique – Music Instead of Moves

Tonight I chose to transcend technique. It’s so easy to get caught up in the rules, the steps, the movements, and the patterns of a dance. These tools are important for conveying the underlying principles of a dance form but in the end all techniques are just that, tools. They provide a framework for telling …

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