CONTACT CONVERSATION: it starts with a handshake
To open up the space for communication to be possible, you have to embody trust.
This workshop aims towards an enhanced understanding of the potential of touch and trust.
Of touching and being touched by someone other, while “donating an important aspect of
yourself and trusting someone else to manage it for you” (Steve Paxton 2018)
Let’s reflect on whether as a dancer, actor or musician in an improvisation, you always have
to say “yes” and acknowledge the impulse being offered. Let’s think beyond what happens if
a partner is unwilling or unable to say “yes”.
How does one continue?
Is it possible to introduce a different vocabulary for developing movement patterns that go
away from conventional acceptance of impulses offered, and that challenge our linear
understanding and practice of contact improvisation?
Starting with the simple handshake, which functions as the physical point of entry,
progressing from a safe space to a brave space.
Interpreting the touch impulse of the other, not only as an indication of where to go, but
also as an invitation to be allowed to choose otherwise, reflecting authentic human
dialogue, building from simplicity to virtuosity.
Developing a language with a rich vocabulary and syntax of “what-ifs” – interference, re-
direction, contradiction, surprise, avoidance and acceptance – all of which are allowed as
options for intercultural conversation.