If life is what happens to our plans, then dance is what happens to our steps.
ideas sometimes when you wait they come to you.
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Friday, 13 October 2017

Campus session in October and November up-date

We have an on-campus session next week on Friday October 10th noon to 3pm.
Watch my blog for which room or go to reception when you arrive. please comment below if you are attending.

(Also please note the Campus session on November 7th is now from 10am to 1pm. )

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Liz Lerman live stream

Watch the MAPP Youtube channel


Professional Practice Dance and Movement MDX

For live streaming of Liz Lerman's talk today at 6pm.

Monday, 9 October 2017

Module One - thoughts for all

We talked about how Module One asks you to re-think and re-feel the assumptions you have about yourself and what you do as a way to better position and recognise what your own practice is.

For instance, thinking about
modesty ‘v’ showing off
modesty ‘v’ generosity

When you write a cover letter to an interview modesty ‘v’ showing-off makes you feel the thing to do is ‘I would really like to work with your company’ so you don’t ‘show-off’. But thinking in terms of modesty ‘v’ generosity means you write ‘I am a trained actress … giving your credentials…’ because you are giving the people short-listing for the interview all the information they need about you. Thinking like this you might give different information then ‘showing-off’ but more information than your perception of modesty would have let you.

This stepping back and critically reflecting on your actions in terms of your practice is what Module One is asking you to do. NOT the change what you are doing but to use the tasks to look at what your practice is today.

Cycle Module One!! As ever do not think about only doing the tasks once through. Do them all and then do them again and again. Each time you engage with a deeper or different layer of your practice and task. Module one you are looking at what you already do and applying critical thinking/reflection to what it is you are doing.

The thoughts of people in the session:
Nicole is partly going to use the Module to explore her goals and better understand these goals mean to her:
‘To really get myself out there and thinking of yourself as a professional rather than a student. 
Finding my purpose in what I am doing and making myself an asset to the company.
See how I can adapt myself to communicate with different people of different ages.’

Matthew D. suggests Module One has 3 lens - communication of how you position yourself in the world, what you think you need to do and why you need to do it?
Reflection: reflect on what you do and why you do it, how what you do works and how it can be improved, how could you use that process in the future
Networking: the give and take of relationships within the aspects of your life/professional life.

To not overthink what you are doing Module one is about growing as a person and developing and then looking back on where you started from.

Arghierenia says Module 1 is about your practice, you are not being asked to do something new necessarily but to look at what you do through a different perspective by using critical thinking. There are three different lenses through which we will look at our professional practices; communication, reflection and networking. It’s useful to do the tasks a few times, as the module progresses as the way you do them will change and that will help your learning and understanding of them.

We also talked about criticism ‘v’ reflection. Reflection should not start from a deficit stand point. That is, it not about what you ‘can do better’. It is about if you can see different or varied perspectives.

We about doing the tasks as a cycle also you do not have to stick to the week suggested.

The course is like the seasoning to you the meal of your life, it is not about cooking a whole new meal!

The course is about how you pull information to you meaningfully. This is difficult at first because we are often used to ‘educational’ experiences where information is pushed at you and you have to receive and memorise it! However, we are suggesting in professional settings you have to have the confidence and independence to be proactive not sit and wait for someone to tell you what to do.
What do you think-feel comment below...

Module Two - cycle and crafting your inquiry is a way to better understand your own field of practice

Module Two sessions

Also have a look at what people in the session posted about it.

Important points we discussed:
Do all the tasks in the handbook as a cycle – go through them once, this will help start to shape your inquiry. But do not take too much time on one if it does not move you forward. Then go through them again this time the parts that you were stuck on will have shifted because of the work you did on the other tasks. For instance – in the first cycle of doing the tasks, your inquiry field might be vague. Don’t spend days and days trying to get a perfect question. Have an area then start thinking about the ethical considerations/ concerns/ arguments/ reflections in that area. This might make you clearer about the area in the general field you are interested in. Or it might be as you start to think about data collections tools you have an aha moment. After the literature review you should have had some changes because you would have explored and discovered new ideas from other people around the topic. Try to do the cycle of tasks at least three times layering and shaping your inquiry each time.

The literature review is the most important tool to help you see what you don’t know. It helps you realise other perspectives on your topic and it is these other perspectives and ideas your inquiry should be about. Your inquiry should not be about proving something you already feel or know because:
Firstly, the 12 weeks of Module Three is not long enough to ‘prove’ something.
Secondly, this does not help your practice or helps you develop  – it just makes you feel better about where you are currently! That is not what your BA is for – that is your best friends job!!

The inquiry should inform your practice – help you develop it. BUT NOT help you start a whole new branch of practice. You should be able to clearly explain how your past work, and current work inform your inquiry. But the inquiry gives you time to really focus or understand something within your practice. It is very useful to focus on a kind of historical inquiry where you find out what other people have done and how that fits with the 2017 field of practice that you are involved with.

Tip: if you think not much has been written or done on your topic – a historical inquiry will be really useful because it is likely you just don’t know about it not that nobody else in the history of arts practices has thought of what you are thinking of!!

In the on-line session we used a adapted version of Liz Lerman’s https://lizlerman.com   Critical Response Process: A method for getting useful feedback on anything you make from dance to dessert.

Each person in the call spoke about their practice and their inquiry and we followed the Liz Lermans Critical Response Process to feedback. This is something you can do with a friend or your SIG group. Describe your inquiry and get feedback on what people understand about what you are doing and how clearly they see it fitting with your practice. IT IS NOT to get feedback that you are doing a good job!! Or to get them to tell you what to do. It is to see if what you are thinking makes sense outside of your own head!! Also talking about your inquiry plans  and asking and answering questions helps you to better understand your own thinking-feeling.

Liz Lerman is presenting at Middlesex University this month as part of Dance Umbrella. Tuesday October 10th 6pn at Hendon  MDX and Wednesday 11th 4;30 at National Theatre http://www.danceumbrella.co.uk/event/dance-umbrella-lecture/  (if you are in London, UK those days).

Have a go exploring your ideas through feedback. Here is how her steps are described:

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Module Three on-line sessions

We have our Module Three on-line sessions Tuesday 10th October

12:30 (time in London)
7:30 pm (time in London - note half and hour later than the Academic Calendar indicates!!)

Please indicate in this blog post in the comment below which one you will be attending. 

Module One on-line sessions

We have our Module One on-line sessions Monday 9th October

12:30 (time in London)
5pm (time in London)

Please indicate in this blog post in the comment below which one you will be attending.

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Module two discussion on-line session

We have two Module Two on-line session tomorrow (Thursday October 5th 2017).We will be talking about Module two ideas - ethics and fields of work, but any Module can join since these ideas are carried across the course.

12:30 (time on London)
5pm (time in London)

Please comment below to indicate which one you will join. 

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Older People Dancing

This week I am at the People Dancing: Foundation for community dance conference https://www.communitydance.org.uk

I am going to try to write a little about the sessions I go to. Today was only half a day. I went to a workshop by Natasha Gilmore which was practical and shared some movement exercises/games to use dance to brake down barriers. Natasha works with refugee and migrant communities in Scotland so often her workshops are about involving people getting them to be joyful moving together.

I was able to go to the whole of a session on Older People Dancing: Perspectives on creative practice.

What struck me in terms of BAPP is just how much Community Dance history there is to discover if you are just beginning to work in the field and by just beginning I mean only been doing community dance work for the last five or so years. The some of the artists  people talking on this panel have been doing work with older people and multi-generational work for 29 /30 years! There is such a rich history to find out about. Fergus Early spoke about the range of training, performance, and facilitation of dance for older people (and multigenerational groups)his company engages in - I used to work with him in his company Green Candle Dance Company.

There was also Libby Costello who talked about a programme at the RAD. Vina Oberlander talked about the work she has been doing making work for people with dementia. The project she talked about was Curious Shoes.

Lorna Murray talked about the work Scottish Ballet are doing with older peoples classes and performance. Rachel Bar spoke about work Canada National Ballet is doing in Canada. Because Canada is so big they are running classes with dance teacher leading from class over internet. Exploring what this means and can offer.

Carrie Washington talked about her recent project Ignite

Critical thinking and using questions to find more questions

We had two skype discussion groups today (AM and PM).
In the first group we talked about different topics that people brought to the group as points of discussion. But then we took a ‘step back’ in terms of looking at ourselves and observing our own thinking process. In other words, we did some critical thinking about the conversation we had just had. This is about not just taking things for face value but looking at what ideas we accepted without question, what things we assumed, where the conversation went and where it could have gone.

This critical thinking is what you are asked to do across each Module with your Critical reflection that you hand-in. It is about reflexivity. Considering your place in the discussion not taking your own ideas for granted. Asking yourself why you think like that – where does it come from.

For instance, as we talked we started to realise we were using words like ‘perfection’ and ‘talent’. At this point I asked where does perfection reside/live in your practice. Where does it sit for you? Comment below

This question is not “What is perfect in your practice?” that is a very different question because that question is about identifying a something – tell us about a perfect thing.

The question
“where does perfection sit/live/reside in your practice
 is about identifying the idea of perfection and your relationship with it.

Telling us about a perfect thing is assuming perfection is a fixed description we all construct in the same way. Discussing how the idea of perfection is in your practice allows you to start to look at your practice and how it is influenced or constructed by the things you believe or have been led to believe.

Many of us take on the philosophy or attitude of the person who taught you your art form as if that attitude was part of the art form itself. But where are YOU in that –

This leads me to an idea we talked about in the second discussion. The idea of ‘authenticity’. Artistic authenticity and also how you can be your authentic self in different cultures. So much of who you identify as – the authentic you – is the cultural you. In different cultural places your habits and approaches are received differently and this affects how you see yourself too. This is not a right way things should be or wrong. You could also ask what is so important about authenticity? Is authenticity some kind of second best replacement for truth –when we can’t prove a truth?

These kind of questions make you question your assumptions, allow you to step-out-side yourself to reflect on your practice and help you to analyse data. Wondering like this does not immediately reveal how they will answer a question or get you closer to a good grade BUT they are how you can start to un-pick ideas and position and develop your practice which is what this course is about.

Have a look at what other people have posted on the conversations. Selene please post your blog address in the comments below so people can look at yours too.

Jae-Eun An      https://jaeeunan.blogspot.co.uk