Jamming at Mather Dance Center

Submitted by Colleen Clark on Sun, 01/21/2007 - 18:40.



So today we had our monthly Contact Improvisation jam at Mather Dance Center at CWRU, and Larry Muha & I were the only 2 to show up, which has pretty much been the status quo for awhile now.

Contact is a form that allows the dancer to truly be who/what/how s/he is and be it with others.  We lay on the floor, breathe, allowing the weights of our bodies fall into gravity, releasing tension and tightness into the floor.  And the floor at Mather Dance is one of the most receiving and beautiful floors in the universe to do that.  So many dancing moments, hours, days, weeks, months and years of dancing have gone into the woodgrain that the floor itself is a magnificent partner.

We rolled on/in/with the floor, softening and yielding, then found a moment of connection-foot to foot.  I noticed how connection changes everything.

We moved together for 30 or 40 minutes-in a timeless, body space communicating non-verbally about weight, and giving and taking, and compression, and counter-balance, and about who we are physically.

In Contact, your whole body is a dancing surface-not just your feet like in ballet, tap, Irish step, many other forms.  It's more like Capoeria or break dancing in that any part of you may come into contact w/the floor, and in that you are hardly ever vertically oriented.  Unlike Capoeria or breaking, any part of your body may also provide a surface or platform for your partner to pour his/her weight into.

We ended up in a heap together on the floor, breathing together until we decided to go get coffee.

i'm trying to attach a photo of us doing contact, but it says the path is invalid...maybe another day-i'll try to get some pics up soon.



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Hello Colleen,  More new dance moves that I didn't know about.   Great! 

See link below which has directions which will hopefully help to insert JPEG photos into Realneo.


If anyone else has advice, please ad.  Susan Miller knows how to insert JPEGs into blog comments, which isn't easy because the comment body boxes don't have any way to browse to pick photo file (off desktop or where ever).  The comment body does have the insert image icon, So what you need to do is 1.    start a new blog entry for yourself, 2.    check the "do not publish" box, 3.    attach a photo to the blog which you are not going to publish, 4.    copy the assigned url and bring it over to the post which you wish to comment about, 5.    click insert, and past the image url into the insert window.  6.    submit comment, that will load the image into your comment.  Comment boxes are narrower than blog headlines, so pixel width can only be 600 pixels wide.   Good luck. 

posting photos

thanks, jeff! sounds complicated-guess i just lucked out the first time i tried it actually did work even though i thought it didn't. i'll try your method if it doesn't work next time.

colleen please post the jams

please post the jams so we see that they are coming up in the calendar. Go to events and fill in the details. The jams and perfomances will show up on the upcoming events on the home page with an hourly countdown to when to get up and go dance. New event postings also show up on the home page. Good to see you've already mastered posting with images! You go girl. 

You can also post some more info about contact improv. I'm not sure folks reading here have the idea yet. I'll try to find some solid high res video to post on the subject, too.

Contact dancing in NEO

I hadn't realized there was a NEO connection to contact dancing and regularly scheduled dances here - I knew people in San Francisco who did this regularly. What is the largest number of dancers who show up for these jams here? Like Susan posted, you should put these in the event calendar.

Disrupt IT

contact improv in cleve

our jams have been small recently, but occassionally a dozen people will show up, which is big for us.  i went to a jam in northampton, mass this summer and 15 or so folks were there and everybody was all low-energy cuz "no one was there" they usually get about 50 people for their weekly jam above fitzwillies.
i just posted our dates and times on the events page...hope we can draw more people-not that i'm complaining-our jams are always luscious, even though they are small.

new year contact jams at The Yoga Room

Contact will continue at The Yoga Room in the Murray Hill Galleries in January. It's Sunday afternoons 1-3 and the space is beautiful.


In this photo by Jay Levan the room is filled with practitioners in Dean Lerner's workshop and beautiful southern light streams in on them.

Check out the schedule here: The Yoga Room Cleveland

Oh, and may I highly recommend Colleen Clark's classes?  Don't freak out, don't try to look like someone in a picture, just practice yoga for health and serenity everyday... she teaches a chill class for all levels. This woman has more movement knowledge in one cell than most dancer/yoga practitioners in NEO combined and she knows how to let it out to you a little at a time - bite sized morsels. This is not beat you over the head yoga; it's digestable, engaging and might quickly become addictive. You never met a nicer more knowledgeable yoga/dance/contact improv teacher. I've known Colleenfor 30 years and if you know me at all, you know I don't BS. Get up and make contact.