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some motivations

some motivations for making dances


The basic impulses to communicate through dance shape the processes to create the work, and the dance that the audience eventually experiences.


Participants of the 2012 Choreographic Marathon were creating from 3 very different motivations, leading to these thoughts.

spirit dance

developed from internal sensations, states, moving experience

Essentials are


> Drive for self-discovery and/or transformation > group support
> Ability to recognize the difference between sensation and expression
> Ability to recall sensation and formalize it into expression

Challenge: making the richness of the experience perceivable by the audience

copyright © Maxine Heppner

December 2012.

movement for itself

MOVEMENT FOR ITSELF (pure movement)

Essentials are

> Form Time Place Action  (ftpa)
> Internal aspects & Detail in
       musicality & shapes & interaction of “essentials” (ftpa)
       rhythm & directions within each dancer
       pulse & levels between/shared by all dancers
> Interactions of dancers and non-human elements including the performance site

Challenge : audience’s tendency to relate to dancers as people, not abstractions.




Essentials are

​> Place: People in Place
> Ordering of Action over Time

Challenge: using appropriate movement genres and conventions to advance and reveal story to specific audience. One must work within storytelling conventions known by the audience or set such clear conventions that the audience perceives and understands them with ease as the story unfolds.

to remember


Relationship and Interaction are NOT the same


>Relationship implies social responses
>Interaction implies formal/technical responses

Some Approaches to building a piece

>working from blank space and filling it
>working from action and/or image and/or idea
>working with patches that will eventually connect together
>working from start to finish? From last to first? inside out?
>preconception of the piece/world as it will be when the piece is “finished” and working to fulfill that vision.
>no preconception of the finished piece



Often one approach rules the entire creative process.

Sometimes within the process, problem-solving or moments of inspiration demand working with other approaches.


copyright © Maxine Heppner

December 2012.

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