Last but not least, we share a blog with you from Trolley Dances 2016 choreographer Jess Humphrey. Jess is a part of the San Diego State University Dance Department faculty, as well as a facilitator of contact improvisation around town. We are most excited that her piece for Trolley Dances features an intergenerational cast of dancers ranging from their teens to their seventies! Jess has some juicy bits to share about her process and the piece you’ll see this weekend and next!
How has the site/cast helped to shape the dance?
Each dancer’s perception of the site is what we are using to create the work. What they do and who they are is not what shapes the dance…it is the dance. What we are practicing is more like site-sensitivity than site-specificity so we might experience this place anew through each performance. We relate, discover new nooks & crannies, and we can’t wait to see what it feels like when everyone is in there with us!
What would you like the audience to know about your Trolley Dance?
My fantasy is that when a person sees this dance, they let go of any obligation to “get it.” I would love to behold a crowd of people lingering in their experience until the dance ends, and then getting busy with the work of interpretation on the way out the door…or even in the next night’s dreams. We are not attempting to deliver a specific narrative with this dance, but if you really want a story, we give you full permission to find or make one up!
What other inspirations are informing your Trolley Dance?
The many ways in which somatic practices serve dancemaking processes, the hundreds of conversations I’ve had with Leslie Seiters over the past 8 years, including many this summer while she taught at ADF, Eric Geiger and every dance we’ve ever been in, and, on a good day, every experience each dancer in this piece has ever had. And Deborah Hay, all the way.
Share your most memorable moment of the process so far.
There are many dances within our dance. Some are in a sequence, several overlap to varying degrees, stuff is happening all over the place, and all (people, places, processes) are in relationship. In our last rehearsal, we took some time to witness each section. Dancers saw dances that they can’t see when the whole piece is happening. When we watched the duet with Pat Sandback and Laray Egea-Saez, the building was silent and there was no one in the space surrounding them. I realized that none of the Trolley Dance audiences will see it like we did that day and they will see it ways that we never will. It was breathtaking.
The time has come for us to finally share these wonderful new dances with you! See you this weekend or next for the best Trolley ride of the year!