Featured Practitioner – Amy Voris
IBMT Graduate Amy Voris writes about her work, current series of on-line sessions and offers an article, ‘Forming & Returning‘, based on her Doctoral research that draws on Authentic Movement.
I am a contemporary dance-maker, teacher and therapist based in Manchester, UK. My dance-making practice is process-oriented and collaborative, driven by the desire to develop enduring relationships with people, with places and with movement material. The outcome of the work is contingent on hunches and interactions that occur during the process and varies widely. Examples of current projects include a site-responsive project (enter & inhabit), a collaboration with a jewellery maker (flockOmania) and a collaboration exploring artist-led curation for experimental performance practices (Accumulations). Alongside my artistic practice, I have worked in higher education for twenty years delivering a range of dance-related subjects within conservatoire and university settings. Current teaching engagements include workshop delivery and project supervision on the MA in Creative Practice (Independent Dance/Trinity Laban) and delivery of experiential anatomy and Authentic Movement on Janet Kaylo’s Laban/Barteneiff Somatic Studies International. Between 2008-2012, I undertook the IBMT training with Linda Hartley (and guest tutors) to support and deepen my facilitation practice. This training has subsequently had a transformative effect on my creative work and on my approach to practice-based research. The course was also life-changing in that it cultivated a passionate interest in further exploring the co-creative, healing potential between people.
Experiential Anatomy into Movement Classes
Between September – December 2020, Amy is offering online classes in Experiential Anatomy into Movement. Further information can be found here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/experiential-anatomy-into-movement-tickets-117636617289
These sessions will begin with an introduction to the week’s anatomical theme (including looking at imagery), followed by experiential explorations and gentle prompts for movement. The last portion of the session will be accompanied by music and offer space for integration. Overall, these sessions are designed to cultivate sensitivity to initiation and quality of movement as well as an imaginative pleasure in dancing. Time for reflection is embedded within the sessions and individualised responses are welcome throughout.
My approach to facilitating Experiential Anatomy is deeply influenced by the work of Linda Hartley (and my training in Integrative Bodywork and Movement Therapy with her). Other practitioners who inspire and inform my work are Andrea Olsen, Caryn McHose, Miranda Tufnell, Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen, Eva Karczag, Fabiano Culora, Janet Kaylo, Jane Bacon and Vida Midgelow.
Amy will deliver (more or less) the same content twice per week: on Mondays 6.30-7.45pm GMT and on Fridays 10.00-11.15 GMT.
The sessions are priced at 5 pounds per session with a total of twelve people per session. Two free places are available each week for those on low-income — please contact Amy directly (not Eventbrite) to book these places.
You can also find out about working with Amy in one-to-one sessions here.
Forming and Returning: Dance-making with the Processual Qualities of Authentic Movement
In my doctoral research, I explored how I might articulate the experience of forming movement material within a solo, contemporary dance-making practice. My final submission consisted of a solo practice, called perch, submitted in conjunction with a written thesis and a considerable amount of companion materials such as scores, drawings, photography, and video which accompanied its making.
Within my solo dance-making practice, a making process begins by opening to or improvising with ‘what is present’ and by incorporating those materials into resources for making the work. Phases of moving are followed by phases of reflection and selection. What resonates in the moment of moving is what remains and what gets returned to. Out of this process of returning, more material is generated and arranged. Gradually, movement material begins to settle, and with this settling, a multi-layered quality of embodiment begins to emerge. So, while I do not set out to make dance works according to a preconceived idea or plan of what a piece will be, the works as performed do adhere to a given structure worked out in some detail. A work is typically made over an extended period of time, during which I work on and off with periods of intensity according to how life circumstances permit. The ‘form’ of the work is shaped in a constantly shifting relationship with the contextual and material conditions of the making process. I experience the process of forming movement material to be a subtle, fluctuating, and ongoing process, rather than a process with a finite endpoint.
As I became more focussed in the research on how movement material is formed – in a way that tends to identify the work with the very process of its making – it became clear that Authentic Movement offers a holistic approach that is particularly attuned to such movement processes. This led me to incorporate certain aspects of Authentic Movement as a framework (or methodology) for investigating the process of forming movement material. As I am also a practitioner of Authentic Movement, it already had deep synergies with my dance-making practice, and this closeness allowed me to develop out of it a reflective framework that still speaks directly from the voice of the dance-maker. The investigation into the synergies between my dance-making practice and Authentic Movement thus became a major theme of my research. My hope was that identifying those aspects of Authentic Movement that are relevant to my own dance-making practice would not only further facilitate my own dance-making practice, but would also assist in the articulation of my dancer-maker-knowing to others.
Further information here:
Voris, A. (2019), ‘Forming and Returning: Dance-making with Authentic Movement’ [online] available from <https://nivel.teak.fi/adie/forming-and-returning/>