Dancing In The Kitchen

This week, Boston Ballet hosts its first-ever Choreographic Intensive in Marblehead, MA. Student Leah Hirsch will be blogging daily from the Intensive for Pointe. Read Leah's first entry here, and stay tuned for more!

 

Sometimes the most non-traditional environments can provide the best breeding grounds for choreography.  

 

I have performed in a studio, I have performed on stage, I have performed in a gym and I have performed outside, but I have never performed in a kitchen...until today!  Instead of working solely with Helen Pickett, both Mr. Davis and Ms. Pickett thought it would be  beneficial to switch back and forth between the two pre-assigned groups of dancers. Mr. Davis instructed us to choreograph a short piece (with the use of an object) and to not necessarily create the movement in the confinement of the studio. As my group of three women looked around the room, the barres had been taken, the chairs had been taken, and all of the studios were being used. So, we focused our attention on the kitchen outside of Grand Studio A. We saw a microwave, a table, a refrigerator and a coffee pot. What more could a choreographer ask for? On Kitchen Stage, the housewares served as our props. We opened and closed the refrigerator between phrases, turned on the faucet and used the microwave as our music. We completed our final pose to the beep-beep-beep signaling the end of the microwave’s program. Quite comical and maybe a bit too outside of the box, our Kitchen Dance taught us that any setting is viable for choreographic interpretation.   

 

Furthermore, for our homework assignment on Monday, Ms. Pickett instructed us to watch William Forsythe's Synchronous Objects. The dance is chaotic in a seemingly organized way and the computer-generated graphics imposed on the video highlight the choreographic ingenuity. These visual animations give prominence to the mathematical and geometric qualities of the movement. It is truly amazing how such fast and expansive movement, performed by many people at opposing moments, can look so refined. To be learning the technique of such an ingenious and talented man is remarkable. I hope to continue learning and expanding my knowledge of Forsythe's choreography and work process as the week continues!