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BEGINNERS PROGRAM - WEEK 5

Yoga class with Michael Helland
As a practice for personal freedom and transformation, yoga makes for an excellent companion to the path walked by the dancer and lovers of dance. In this Yin & Yang class we will establish a deeper connection to the earth, developing greater stability and a sense of groundedness. We will nourish our centers of desire and discover more clearly what makes us move. We will build determination and a sense of purpose through our movements and stillnesses. We will hold and be held by loving presence in the spirit of collective care. We will become more articulate and nuanced as we share some good vibrations. We will establish greater clarity and insights into the dance of life as we connect with our bodies, minds, and beyond… Each class begins with an opening attunement to connect more deeply with the sensations of the breath as we begin to flow through traditional and innovative hatha postures and vinyasa sequences to awaken our strength, flexibility and coordination. In addition to warming up the body, we take a mindful approach to our movements and stillnesses to invite conditions for self-observation and care. Each class finishes with a period of rest to integrate the experience and feel ready to rise and shine into the day ahead.
Biography Michael Helland


Contemporary technique class with Yuika Hashimoto
This class will not teach you how to dance. But it will offer some tools to discover what you are able to do and what "dance" would mean for you. Starting from simple daily movements into improvisation or choreography. Through this class, discover your own body in space, a space in between another bodies. Communicate to yourself and the surroundings through the movement.
Biography Yuika Hashimoto

Improvisation workshop with Susanne Bentley
Movement Improvisation for Beginners

“Play is the highest form of research” – Albert Einstein
“Play is a state of being” – Katie Salen – play researcher

It’s a state of openness to explore, feel, test, fail, get better… a frame for experiencing the world. Play allows your natural creativity to surface: as John Cleese says, “it’s a relaxed open mode”.
Think back to yourself as a child, you were in this state constantly. It is often conditioned out of us as adults, so the first thing to access again as improvising adults is how to play. After that comes expanded awareness of the present moment, techniques to open up new movement possibilities, different ways to interact with partners and groups etc.
Body play is a way of knowing, and we actually, through movement and play, think in motion. It attunes us to others. We establish trust through the sharing the same tools (or toys), or synchronising our rhythms and energies, creating a social sense of belonging. Our imagination, problem-solving and the brain’s natural storytelling tendency are sparked to respond to the dance emerging. We allow spontaneous new worlds to open up through different movements and sensations, as well as surprise connections with others.
What makes you unique as a dancer? How can you expand your palette of movement possibilities? What options are there for dancing with others?
The essence of Play Space is to help people connect their own improvisational movement style & presence. Inspired by Al Wunder’s Theatre of the Ordinary, the work of Andrew Morrish and Ruth Zaporah’s Action Theater, this class promotes an experiential way of learning. Participants discover what they like doing, what they like seeing and take responsibility for noticing and developing their own style of moving and interacting.
We start warming up the body using a variety of images and exercises focused towards certain themes for each day. We discover how to generate material instantaneously and explore different ways to interact with others using tools of time, space, rhythm, energy etc. The practice, in small or large groups, also includes learning by doing and watching others. This is an essential part of the process of appreciating each person’s uniqueness as dancers and recognising our aesthetic preferences, to further improve our play experience.
One of my mottos is “Serious Fun, serious Play” – I’m dedicated to playing as learning tool for art and life. Play Space is a environment to recognise your creativity, learn and most importantly, have fun – otherwise why dance?!
Biography Susanne Bentley