We’re in disturbed times. Social, political and ecological systems are radically changing and the models we’ve used till now to make sense of them no longer reflect reality or offer much hope.
Dancing probably won’t change any of this.
There’s no going back, no undisturbing. We must learn the skills and arts to inhabit a world in the midst of disturbance, to live as disturbances ourselves.
So we've got together and we've danced. We've pushed and pulled, stuck with each other in unexpected connections, eased into uncomprehendingly complex situations that demand instant responses, cared for one another through challenges and provocations. We've passed the resultant tips, techniques and practices back and forth between the twenty of us- learning together, distributing and decentring.
Dancing probably won’t change anything.
(but a cascade isn’t the big and powerful moving the small and passive)
Research initiated and directed by Ben McEwen
Research Team: Alessandra Ruggeri, Annie Hanauer, Aubruary Sik, Becky Horne,
Ben McEwen, Bun Kobayashi, Chlöe D'Arcy, Elettra Giunta, Elina Akhmetova,
Jennie Boultbee, Joel O'Donoghue, Julia Testa, Juliette Mello, Lauren Potter, Lewis Wilkins, Lucy Evans, Luigi Ambrosio, Petra Söör, Sophie Arstall, Verena Schneider.
Team for the sharing: Alessandra Ruggeri, Aubruary Sik, Becky Horne, Ben McEwen, Bun Kobayashi, Chlöe D'Arcy, Elettra Giunta, Jennie Boultbee, Julia Testa, Juliette Mello,
Lucy Evans, Luigi Ambrosio, Sophie Arstall.
Sound: Michael Picknett
Technical Support: Laban Production
Viewing notes – to be used as needed.
Sticking – staying with – long durations of touch – not always easy – surprising connections – neither collaboration nor conflict.
Slugging – sticking with a large surface area – to find inside/“negative” spaces – connection must be constantly maintained – no grabbing/holding/leaning
Push/Pull – a disturbance – small or large – within bodies or into space – giver and receiver both respond.
Invitation – the moment before a disturbance – a small drawing towards before pushing away, or a small expansion before pulling towards.
Disturb – to move, displace, disrupt, diverge, deviate, diffuse – to open up possibilities in yourself and others.
Disturbance – Anna Tsing says: “disturbance is always in the middle of things: the term does not refer us to a harmonious state before disturbance. Disturbances follow other disturbances." (2015, p. 160)
Cascade – passage of information and energy – unpredictable reorganisation along the way – the small moving the large – fractal.
Hold space open – to not block someone else’s action, or limit their ability to respond to yours.
Leader (as) participant – to initiate something you’ll then be part of – to be as involved and invested as everyone else.
Seeding – to suggest a group action in the place where you are.
Distributed – no fixed centre, no fixed roles – the movement practices used in Cascades are owned by all those who developed them.
Antifragile – from the work of Nassim Nicholas Taleb – the ability to gain and learn from disruption, as opposed to robustness (the ability to not be affected by disruption).
In the midst – to be part of systems so complex and changeable they can’t be fully understood, but nevertheless you must act as part of them (not to do anything is also an action).
Video Credit: TrinityLaban