SEAD portraits of modernity 5: Isadora Duncan

In the framework of the series of History of Choreography workshops taught at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) by Anna Leon, students consulted images of dance modernity drawn from material/books available in the Derra de Moroda Dance archives and created contemporary versions of them.

This final selection of their works proposes three views of Isadora Duncan. Giorgia Gasparetto analyses Duncan’s movement qualities and body posture in order to recreate a similar state in her own body. Priscilla Pizziol stages a contemporary body limited by a society that obstructs its possibility of being natural and ‘pure’ in a Duncan-esque way. Michel Briand, Soraya Emery and Evelyne de Weerdt take Isadora Duncan’s accentuated femininity as a starting point in order to work on contemporary gender stereotypes in the process of re-embodying Duncan’s poses. 

GG

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SEAD portraits of modernity 4: ’natural‘ and ‚mechanical‘ dance

In the framework of the series of History of Choreography workshops taught at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) by Anna Leon, students consulted images of dance modernity drawn from material/books available in the Derra de Moroda Dance archives and created contemporary versions of them. This fourth publication of their works proposes a dialogue between contrasting aspects of modern dance. Starting from images representing on the one hand the mechanical-looking, seamless dance of ‘girl troupes’ and on the other hand the natural movements of free and rhythmic dance, Tilly Sordat, Tina Fores Hitt and Rosslyn Wythes present a video in which humans and inanimate equipment engage together in a dance juxtaposing naturalness to a mechanical feel, thus staging the contradictions and diversities inherent in dance modernity.

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SEAD portraits of modernity 3: ‚Free‘ dance

In the framework of the series of History of Choreography workshops taught at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) by Anna Leon, students consulted images of dance modernity drawn from material/books available in the Derra de Moroda Dance archives and created contemporary versions of them. This third selection of their works proposes three responses to an image characteristic of early 20th-century ‘free’ dance: Gertrud Leistikow dancing in a field near Ascona in 1914 (in DdM 9919).Based on this image, Charlotte Chiarelli & Siel Van Dingenen interrogate the extent to which the freedom of Leistikow’s pose can still be found in contemporary dance and its corporeality. Prunelle Bry & Tristan Bénon oppose Leistikow’s natural, organic, flowy position to a body finding harmony with a contemporary urban environment. Delphine Mothes reflects on the framing of the nude body by transferring Leistikow from her natural surroundings to the contemporary stage, its performance aesthetics and practices.

Charlotte Chiarelli & Siel Van Dingenen

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SEAD portraits of modernity 2: dance ‚exoticism‘

In the framework of the series of History of Choreography workshops taught at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) by Anna Leon, students consulted images of dance modernity drawn from material/books available in the Derra de Moroda Dance archives and created contemporary versions of them. This second selection of their works proposes two visions of the phenomenon of dance ‘exoticism’. Chiara Marolla presents a photograph taken in a shopping mall in Rome representing Buddhist monks meditating on a platform, in order to reflect on the evolution of European (displays and) perceptions of the cultural Other. Charlie Brittain specifically focuses on the role of technology in mediating images of non-Western cultures in the West, creating an image of the image of technologised exoticism.

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SEAD portraits of modernity 1: Valeska Gert

In the framework of the series of History of Choreography workshops taught at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) by Anna Leon, students consulted images of dance modernity drawn from material/books available in the Derra de Moroda Dance archives and created contemporary versions of them. A first selection of their works published here proposes three views of Valeska Gert. In her contemporary portrayal of Gert, Noémie Cuérel minimises modification and staging, arguing for the unchanging relevance of the early 20th-century performer in her preoccupations as a contemporary dancer. Riccardo De Simone considers Gert’s potent presence and interaction with her audience as a basis for a reflection on spectator-performer relationships today. Ana Bleda Torres & Joan Aguilà Cuevas focus on Valeska Gert’s theatricality, as well as her avoidance of virtuosic dance movements in favour of expressivity, as factors of importance in their contemporary practice.

Noémie Cuérel

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