Dancing in the Vertical Plane: An exploration of vertical expressivity, interdisciplinary collaboration, and site-specific performance.
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Dance Honors Theses; 2012
Traditionally, dance is bound by gravity. Vertical expressivity can only be achieved by how high a dancer can jump, reach, or be lifted into the air. In traditional dance theatre spaces, a large amount of vertical space above the dancing body is underutilized. My research explored dancing in the extreme: on the vertical plane. Rather than being confined to the ground by gravity, I investigated the possibilities of dancing, choreographing, and performing on a climbing wall. The purpose of my research was to investigate movement in the vertical plane, to combine the athleticism of climbing with the creativity of dance, and to break dance out of the confines of a theater space. This research culminated in site-specific performances at the Outdoor Adventure Center at The Ohio State University. As part of my creative research, I studied aerial dance. I learned ways of moving suspended in a harness creating the illusion that a vertical wall is the horizontal ground. I collaborated with my cast of dancers and climbers to utilize dance aesthetics and climbing techniques to choreograph movement on both the horizontal and vertical planes. By having my dancers and climbers perform a variety of vignettes on the in the air, on the wall, and on the ground, I created a performance that was bound by gravity, defied gravity, and challenged the audience’s perception of space.
1st place at Denman Undergraduate Research Forum in Arts/Architecture
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