My current research project compares how people move together within different disciplines of dance, including Latin/Ballroom, contact improvisation, classical ballet, and contemporary styles. Through short-term, creative residencies with professional dance companies, including the Royal Swedish Ballet, Chicago Hubbard Street, Erick Hawkins Dance Company, and The Cambrians, as well as interviews with practitioners including Nancy Stark Smith (contact improvisation) and Vibeke Toft (Dancesport), I’ve been constructing a model of the different modes of partnering to highlight and better understand the practice of physical, visual, and energetic connection. So far, I have been focusing specifically on how biomechanics (such as sequencing, rolling point of contact, and lead/follow) are in tension with aesthetic values (shape/form). I am interested in understanding how this tension impacts core principles in coordinated movement between two or more people.
– Ilya Vidrin
Certain Bird Residency (Vermont, USA) — source material for Empress Archer (featuring Ariel Freedman and Meredith Webster)