Wednesday, 29 September 2010

First Writing Exercises

Between watching the performance and the workshop on the Saturday we asked each of the participants to complete a short writing exercise. For this we asked them to find somewhere peaceful to sit down for a moment and think about the performance, then write ‘free flow’ in response to the following prompts:

On the evening after the performance:
Write for two minutes about things you saw in the performance
Write for two minutes about things you thought in response to the performance
Write for two minutes about how you felt while you were watching the performance

On the following day:
Do these exercises again without looking at your writing from the previous occasion.


By ‘free flow’ writing we meant that participants should aim to keep their pen
moving for the whole time, try not to analyse what they were writing as they
were doing it, not worrying about punctuation or spelling, not correct mistake
and so forth.

In the workshops Sherry then asked participants to each select from their free flow writing the ten words that had the most resonance or significance to them. These were then read out, going round the circle of seven people out, one word at a time. This was entirely intended as a warm up exercise but became something interesting, a kind of collaborative 70 word poem (with resemblances perhaps to Tristan Tzara's Dada poems). As each word has its roots, its motivation and stimulaton from the evening of dance performances it somehow speaks of that performance. I've reproduced the two 70 texts, one from each workshop, here and it is noticable the similarities in word choices both within each text and across the two texts. Each contains a fair spread of descriptive, thematic and evaluative words:

Flow family symmetry charged control clocks pierrot
Posture comedy synchronicity movement spaces convulsions discordant
Gestures frustration disparate dispatching gridlines control frozen
Relationships mechanical crash spirals inflatables imitation blossoms
Interpretation melancholy alienated intentionality reflections machines relationships
Gasps hypnotic physical opposed attracts animals nostalgia
Space confrontational fluid form repel shadows station
Reason loneliness creative flowing clich├ęd clowns frenzy
Variable rivalry spaciousness naturalness engaged nightmare narrative
Preparedness loss narrative express between elastic physicality



Childlike stark repetitive tension children fluid alien Pierrot
Play lowry frozen release automata relationships twee music
Virtuosity desolation pain joyful muted reflection movement stars
Fluid agonising frustration exultation dying childlike disconnected gymnastics
Individuals sadness cyclical primal aching inclusive moonlit tinfoil
Repetition painful trapped feral tired rhythms hostile reflections
Timeless bleakness sadness fluidity floating lightness frustrated awakenings
Obsessive jerky restrictions fixation imbeciles airy distracting changes
Poignant bewildered anger embodiment order siblings history movements
Innocence strange helplessness raw motherless contrasts distorted control

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