I had only two classes yesterday. I was mistaken about the added class I thought the director had told me about. Instead I was to switch my afternoon class to a morning one. When I arrived at the afternoon one, I found that I was not needed. Hurray! I happily walked home.
My two morning classes were with two new teachers I have been working with and admiring. Their names are Scott Putman and Gordon Pierce. I would google them and put up some info except that I am avoiding finding out more about them at this stage of working with them. Both men have a quiet air of competence and expertise that suggests an impressive CV. I would rather know them in their work at this point and not be inadvertently affected by their prestige and reputation (which I suspect is probably extensive).
Doing it this way is much more interesting and rewarding. I’ll check them out later after the camp.
Scott Putman had a class full of young dancers. It was fascinating to watch him adjust his pedagogy for their age without diluting it.
Things I jotted down during his class: “In order to change a physical movement, it needes to be repeated 12 times in a row to make a change.” When referring to more advanced difficult moves to come, he said something about one must learn the basics before the “tasty delicious stuff.” I quite like that. And then he said, “When in doubt, dance!”
I really like that.
When in doubt, do something, move, play!
Gordon Pierce has a quiet way of connecting with advanced dancers. Judging from the attention and response yesterday, this works. It is fun to watch and participate in. His manner his unpretentious and like all the teachers totally focused on the dance. I watched him win over a class of young adults with this procedure. No doubt, these kids know about his background and abilities. But despite that, one must connect with the people in front of you.
After class, Gordon and I simultaneously said to each other: “That was fun!”
This has been my gut feeling so far throughout this camp. I find it fun to observe and then lay down some music.
The teachers either expect me to make up some cool stuff or don’t mind if I do. I tend to watch the teacher and process their movements (which are usually wonderfully graceful and beautiful) and then try to allow the music to come into being in the actual moment of the danced combination.