dance #199, combat

Tuesday July 7, 2009

dance #199, combatCombat

8:00-9:00 p.m. Combat training for the theatre at the Performing Science conference at the Annenberg School for Communication. The instructor guides a group of academics in physical techniques for creating the effect of violence and violation on stage. Many of us feel the violence and violation all too palpably. We are instructed to yell as we lunge in at each other, arms raised, smacking down hard on the thin air that separates bodies: “Bitch!”, “Bastard”, “uggggghhhh!” Repeating over and over. The space is filled up with physical brutality: fake punches, scratches, slaps, and throes feel all to real as theĀ  scenes are enacted. Many of us are horrified. We’d prefer feminist combat techniques! At one point the instructor uses me to demonstrate. Grabs my head and pulls it back, looming over me and yelling “bitch!” into my face, then throwing my body forward. I’m shuddering even before he starts. When does the performed—that which is supposed to live in the realm of the theatre—generate the experience of the real for the actors themselves?

The day was sun filled and warm.

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~ by nmyers on July 11, 2009.

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