Creative Dance “Recitals”
Kaitlin asked: How do you think a creative dance class could lend its self to a recital? To me a class for parents to observe is enough but I’m not sure how the studio where I teach would feel. At the same time I don’t know how I feel about creating a set dance for a recital in a creative dance class as I feel that it is not what creative dance is really “about.” Any ideas?
Here’s the Youtube link to a recent informance where parents and children danced together. Children were 6 and 7 year olds.
One of the things that we love about creative dance is that it strikes such a nice balance between organization and freedom. We want the ‘freedom’ to shine through. For all activities, don’t over rehearse. Keep a light touch.
Some “Explore” Activities that have a dynamic beginning-middle-end make for a great recital activity. Depending on the age, and example is “Water and Ice.” Music: Eric Chappelle, Contrast and Continuum, Vol 1 #4 It has a thematic shape to it, with room for both improvisation and some ‘set’ movement if you choose. Do it on a day when you are teaching “Free and Bound Flow” that falls close to the recital deadline.
Other good recital choices are the story-type dances. Examples are Little Seed, Snowflake from AlphaBeat. Or Haunted House from Brain Bop. Or a story of your own that you love to show.
Younger children love Two Lands dances: like Giants and Babies (Eric Chappelle, Contrast and Continuum Vol. 1 #14)
What about Natural Disaster dances? Assign small groups different disasters to choreograph. Props are optional. Tsunami, forest fire, earthquake, volcano.
Invented folk dances, with children designing their own movement ideas.
Notice how all these ideas are COMMUNAL and group oriented. Not about frontal presentation but relating to and supporting one another.
The philosophy behind this is “dance feeds the body, mind and spirit.” The ‘skill’ we are showing is how to express joy, creative and critical thinking and our humanity.