Aerial Dance Festival 2018 – Class Descriptions
IMMERSIONS Week A: Monday, July 30 – Friday, August 3
Immersion: Bungee Dance & Build
$300 (includes a $10 equipment fee) (Limit 20 students) Ages 16+
Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug 3 | 9 am – 12 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisites: Don’t take this class if you are: A) deathly afraid of ladders, scaffolds, or heights; B) think you might be pregnant; or C) are against experiencing moderate pain and/or bruising around the hips, inner thighs, and upper arm areas.
This class will cover the main uses for aerial bungee dancing in harness. We will begin each day with a comprehensive Pilates Mat warm up, to prepare the body for the rigors of being in a bungee harness. On day one, we will start the bungee dance section with “high bungee,” where the dancers are unable to touch the ground. With attachments at R/L hip and two points in ceiling, we can work on maximizing bounce and forward/backward rotations. Each dancer will have a partner and both groups will learn some fun choreography sequences to perform with each other. As the week progresses, we will lower the dancers so that they are able to touch the ground and use the floor to create additional bounce and control; then we will change to one ceiling attachment with a swivel and explore spinning and more directional changes, while still able to touch the ground. On day 5, dancers will get to try the ‘back-pick’ attachment, where they are on a single point at the ceiling and on their harness, in the style of “bungee-fitness classes.”
The bungee building section of the classes will cover safety and inspection of harnesses as well as bungee and crimps, and where/how to purchase these items. As the week goes on, dancers will be able to do some “hands on” training with the tools and materials necessary to build their own bungee sets in the future. By the end of the week, dancers should feel confident in how to select, build, inspect and maintain safety with bungee and harness equipment.
Immersion: Aerial Orienteering on Fabric: All who wander are not lost
Elsie Smith and Molly Graves
$290 (limit 18 students) Ages 14+
Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 9 am – 12 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: For intermediate to advanced aerial fabric students, comfortable inverting repeatedly with confidence in the air. Students must be able to execute the following skills: single star roll, front-dive (opposite side wrap/forward rotating), windmill/scissor to hip key in the air, between the fabric knee climb, and putting on an s-wrap (any variation). Not sure what these are? Please email email@example.com with inquiries.
Focusing on split-fabric exploration, we will start by introducing short, creative choreographic sequences that will function either as points of departure or as destinations where you are headed. The journey in between is to be determined… This immersion is intended to expand your split-fabric navigational skills and challenge your creative compass by encouraging exploration of unfamiliar territory in the air. Our goal is to create new and inventive ways to navigate in the air — you might be surprised where you end up!
Immersion: The Body Poetic: Wedding Technique and Emotion in Aerial Dance
$290 (limit 19 students) Ages 15+
Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 9 am – 12 pm | Dairy Arts Center – Gordon Gamm
“As for the body, it is solid and strong and curious and full of detail; it wants to polish itself; it wants to love another body; it is the only vessel in the world that can hold, in a mix of power and sweetness: words, song, gesture, passion, ideas, ingenuity, devotion, merriment, vanity, and virtue.”~Mary Oliver
What compels us to make dances, inspires and moves us in the process of dance-making? How can authentic emotions be shaped and wedded with technique so that our audience leaves with the lingering images of our dance? What to do with our hands to enhance the creation of these images? How can transitions be felt and seen as part of the flow of the dance? What is the importance of “phrasing” in our dances and how can we have more dynamic phrasing? In this Immersion, through Laban Movement Analysis, poetry, music and structured improvisation (on the floor and in the air), you will be invited to bring forth your feeling/imagery life, planting the seeds of new dance-thoughts. Through confident technique, intention, connection with our breath and feelings, nuanced authentic gestures and stillness, our performance presence is both refined and animated.
IMMERSIONS Week B: Monday August 6 – Friday August 10
Immersion: A.R.T. (Aerial Release Technique) Skinner Releasing Technique and Aerial Improvisation
$290 (Limit 18) Ages 15+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 9 am – 12 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisites: Must have at least 1 year of experience with either vertical or horizontal apparatus and a yearning to learn Skinner Releasing Technique and aerial improvisation techniques.
This intensive workshop begins with Skinner Releasing Technique (SRT) and moves into aerial improvisation using mixed apparatus (fabric, sling, low-flying trapeze). Aerial Release Technique (A.R.T.), developed by Nancy Smith, blends the cracked-open experience of SRT with improvisation training to unlock creativity, break movement patterns, and find new ways of moving on the ground and in the air. Solo and group improvisation skills and scores will be learned.
SRT is a highly specialized and useful form of kinesthetic training practiced by dancers, aerialists, and teachers throughout the world. It integrates poetic imagery, hands-on partner studies, and other non-traditional dance exercises to stimulate technical and aesthetic growth. SRT emphasizes principles of multidirectional balance, multidimensional being, and effortlessness to enhance one’s movement on the ground and in the air.
Brief writings about your class experiences are an integral aspect of this course.
Immersion: Connecting with the Floor & Air (Rope & Fabric)
$290 (limit 19) Ages 16+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 9 am – 12 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: Participants should be prepared to explore movement dance and acrobatic movement on the floor with and without their apparatus. Some dance experience is helpful but not necessary.
This immersion series will give participants a new perspective on the creation of contemporary work on vertical apparatus. In these classes we will explore choreography that connects movement between the floor and air, integrating horizontal and vertical planes. Skills will be explored as transitions and technique will be implemented to create a quality of movement that is both fluid and seamless.
Students will learn different ways of engaging with the floor with their bodies as well as their apparatus. We will also focus on the development of transitions and phrases in the air that naturally integrate with the choreography we learn on the ground. Students will come out of this immersion with a new vocabulary of movements and a new insight into the creation of work that is not restricted to the paradigms of ‘aerials’ but has the option to move freely between floor and air and make use of the entire space.
Immersion: Partnering on Dance Trapeze – Intermediate
Megan Cattau assisted by Alysha Perrin
$290 (Limit 18 students) Ages 16+ or with instructor permission
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug 10 | 9 am – 12 pm | CU 150
Prerequisites: Intended for students who already have a practice on the dance trapeze or other horizontal apparatus and / or experience with aerial or acrobatic partnering. Previous partner work is not required, but students must be able to invert unassisted from hanging and be comfortable with the ideas of flying and basing. Must be able to work safely and respectfully with others. Partner not needed for enrollment.
Would you like to broaden your partner trapeze vocabulary? Are you interested in a new approach to expressive movement and aerial storytelling with a partner? This intensive class will build upon the fundamentals of weight- and space-sharing with an aerial partner on the low-flying trapeze. We will focus on skills that allow aerialists to connect and dance safely and expressively together, including strategies for developing trust and communication with an aerial partner and technical skills in body positioning, movement efficiency, and mechanics in partner work. We will teach a choreographed sequence of partner poses and base-and-flyer work with an emphasis on transitions. We will use this sequence as a launching point for exploring how changes in movement quality, positioning, and timing can be employed to create authentic expression. Aerialists will take the skills and vocabulary that they have learned into guided creative play in order to create original movement with aerial partners, finding new shapes and discovering unique and surprising pathways between positions in the air.
These classes meet in either Week A or Week B. Classes offered in both weeks are the same class offered in a different time slot.
Aerial Choreography on Mixed Apparatus (Week B only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 15+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisites: Strong curiosity for creating original movements and thinking outside the box (or apparatus). Being fearless with failure. Must have a minimum of one to two years of aerial experience. Improvisation skills are a big plus.
Exploring and understanding the creative process through choreographic tools and techniques both on the ground and in the air using low-flying trapeze, fabric, lyra, hammock and sling. Emphasis on improvisation, self-exploration, group interaction, relating musical tones, theme and variation and abstract invention. Participants will develop a strong sense of spontaneity, imagination and creativity as well as strengthen their kinesthetic sensitivities to both individual and group movement experiences on and off the apparatus. Participants will create and build onto a composition throughout the week for feedback, ideas and critique with fellow classmates.
Aerial Yoga (Week A only)
$145 (limit 20) Ages 14+
Mon. July 30- Fri. Aug. 3 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | Dairy Arts Center – Gordon Gamm
Aerial Yoga (AY) blends the ancient form of yoga with equal parts aerial dance. We’ll move slowly and mindfully as class evolves from the floor upward. Centering the breath (prana) is key to preparing the body for suspension in the air (asana). Aerial hammocks allows for deep stretching, strengthening and release work sometimes on the ground, suspended in the air, or both on the ground and in the air. AY is great for soothing and calming the nervous system as well as decompressing the spine. This class is challenging for all levels of both yogis and aerialists.
Conditioning & Injury Prevention for Aerialists and Acrobats: Tools of the Trade (Week A or B)
$130 (Limit 18) Ages 14+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 5:30 – 7 pm | Elite Dance Academy
Week B: Mon. August 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 5:30 – 7 pm | CU 350
Get ready to fill up your training toolbox with drills and skills that you can take with you and do anywhere — not just the air! This class is a great way to wind down your day, with a focus on conditioning, stretching and strengthening the whole body while highlighting key areas such as shoulders, knees & hips with injury prevention exercises. This upbeat hour-and-a-half workout will include a mix of cardio warm-ups, circuit training, core conditioning and other exercises targeted to increase overall strength, stamina and flexibility. Great cross training for other sports — this workshop is for athletes and acrobats of all ability levels!
Dynamic Vocabulary on Rope & Fabric – Int/Adv. (Week A or Week B)
$145 (limit 18) Ages 16+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | FFP ADS 2
Week B: Mon. August 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: Participants must have a substantial amount of experience with dynamic technique, beats and half-release moves. Must be able to perform straight arm inversions, hold meathooks, supported back flags & back balances. Level: Intermediate/Advanced
Momentum based movement has become an integral part of Rope and Fabric in the last 10 years. Proficiency in these techniques and pathways opens up a whole new vocabulary of skills and transitions. Not only that, we begin to move differently in the air, not relying on our upper body to move us but our entire integrated body to propel us through space. Throughout the week, students will develop a comprehensive understanding of the fundamental dynamic beats and their extensions. We will use progressions on the floor and on other apparatus to deepen our understanding of these pathways and to strengthen the dynamic potential of our bodies. We will then apply these techniques with unique entrances and exits, slack drags, hand switches and half releases. At the end of this class you will have all the tools necessary to create powerfully dynamic and seamless transitions in your choreography.
Fabric: Roll Reversal. Back Dives and Beyond – Advanced (Week B only)
$145 (limit 17) Ages 14+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: For advanced students comfortable inverting repeatedly with confidence in the air. Students must be able to execute the following skills: single star roll, front dive (opposite side wrap/forward rotating), and windmill/scissor to hip key in the air. Not sure what these are? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with inquiries.
This workshop is focused on directional change in the air with a two-fold objective. We will first consider the various ways we can reverse familiar wraps to create new and exciting possibilities, including backwards rotating dives and unique choreographic entries into reverse wraps. Second, we will explore the mechanics of multi-directional drops in the air. Get ready to challenge your fabric brain as we reverse our rolls, wraps, and our way of thinking about them!
Fabric Choreography for Mad Scientists – Int/Adv (Week B only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 16+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 5:30 -7 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: Ability to invert consistently in the air, familiarity with basic wraps and hangs (foot locks, hip key/thigh hitch, front and back balance, and salto, star drops, and slack drops), five pull-ups, ability to hang for at least 30 seconds, long or short arm, and a sense of adventure.
In this class we will take our fabric skills on an adventure, morphing known vocabulary into new and unique skills. We will start by learning a piece of fabric choreography, and then take it apart and inspect each element for what it could be: flipping, shifting, inventing, and letting things get a little off the beaten path until each of us has something entirely our own. Drawing from dance and aerial composition techniques as well as fabric and momentum theory, we will treat our shared fabric sequence not as a complete thought, but as a starting point and a scaffolding for our own mad inventions.
Handstand Intensive – All Levels (Week A or B)
$130 (Limit 20) Ages 14+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug 3 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | Elite Dance Academy
Week B: Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug 10 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | Elite Dance Academy
Handstand is a great supplemental training for aerialists, dancers and performers to balance out your other training and to improve your inversion awareness in the air as well as on the floor. Make your handstand more confident by learning the efficient and proper way to train. This practice can also be meditative and improve your mental focus and clarity.
In this workshop, you will learn
- Form and techniques of acrobatics handstand from beginner to advanced level (balance, entrance/exit, press, and more)
- Mobility and flexibility required for an efficient handstand
- Finger/wrists/forearms specific strengthening and awareness
- Injury prevention and proper alignment
- Home practice routine
- Proper spotting technique and coaching skills
If you already practice handstand, this workshop will refine your technique and streamline your practice.
If you are a novice handstand practitioner, this workshop will lay the groundwork for your successful handstand journey.
Low-Flying Trapeze Sequencing – Intermediate (Week A only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 15+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug 3 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | Dairy Arts Center – Gordon Gamm
Prerequisites: Students should have a good amount of strength with at least 1 to 2 years of regular training on single-point trapeze and/or other horizontal aerial apparatus.
This class will explore various sequencing methods to gain creative clarity and build on artistic choices within the sequence structure. Students will gain an understanding of the building blocks for creating a strong foundation for sequencing. This class will also explore how a sequence can be the thread on a long string of pearls (the technique). Class looks at shaping and molding one sequence into another to lengthen, refine and discern artistic preferences. Strong emphasis on ground-to-air and how they equally support one other. Class will build on a sequence throughout the week that can be taken into Aerial Choreography (optional) during the second week of the festival.
Lyra/Hoop: Exploring the Circle – Intermediate (Week A only)
$145 (limit 18) Ages 14+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug 3 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisites: This is a workshop for students with a current lyra practice, who can invert/pull over comfortably and repeatedly from the ground, and hold a front balance (no hands on the bar). Spinning is not required, but it is an element that will be explored and applied to choreographic sequences.
The circle of the lyra provides a completely different surface for aerial choreography than other bar apparatus. For students with basic lyra skills who are comfortable with the apparatus but are looking for deeper exploration and technical vocabulary. We’ll use concepts of pressure, elevation/sinking and rolling and mix that up with good old strength skills and “drops”. We’ll also touch on the different uses of double point, single point and “tippy” lyra. Please bring long sleeves and have your back/belly and knees covered.
Lyra/Hoop: Up, down and All Around – Int/Adv (Week B only)
$145 (limit 18) Ages 14+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisites: For students with a current and regular lyra practice, who can invert/pull over comfortably and repeatedly from the ground, invert in the air, do a one knee hang and hold a front balance (no hands!) for 15 seconds. Note that spinning as an element that will be explored and applied to choreographic sequences. Please bring long sleeves and have your back/belly and knees covered.
This workshop is a deep exploration and an opportunity to combine spinning, dropping, rolling and power skills.
Partnering in the Air – (Week A only)
Elsie Smith & Molly Graves
$145 (limit 18) Ages 14+
Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: Students must have at least 1 year experience on one of the included apparatus (static trap, rope, fabric, or sling) and be comfortable moving up and down their apparatus. Trapezists must be comfortable with front balance, catchers lock and ankle hang, and vertical artists must be comfortable in hip key, “s-wrap” and double ankle hang. Previous partnering experience is not required. If you have questions about any terminology or prerequisites please email email@example.com.
Using static trapezes, fabrics, rope and slings, we’ll explore traditional and non-traditional methods of sharing space and body weight in the air. Come solo or with an existing partner and be ready for creative exploration. Activities are designed to encourage participants of all sizes to “fly” and “base” in new takes on these standard roles.
Rope and Harness – Tethered Dancing – All Levels (Week A or B)
$145 (limit 17) Ages 12+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug 3 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | FFP ADS 1
Week B: Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug 10 | 3 pm – 4:30 pm | CU 150
This exhilarating class will be structured around learning basic rope and harness dance techniques. We will be working both close to the ground as well as higher in the air. The vocabulary taught will be combined with guided solo and group improvisations as part of the exploration process. This is an amazing core workout, and is not as intensive on the arms, for those planning on taking other aerial classes. Please wear multiple snug layers around your hips and waist for your comfort. If you have a harness, please bring it with you, otherwise, one will be provided. No previous aerial experience is necessary, other than be prepared to have fun and create!
Rope Choreography – Int/Adv (Week A only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 16+
Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 5:30 – 7 pm | FFP ADS 2
Prerequisites: Participants should have a strong and varied vocabulary on Rope. Many of the movements in the choreography will involve dynamic technique and c-shaping technique, a good understanding of each is advised. Level: Intermediate/Advanced
When we learn Aerials we’re often focused on the necessary process of building a vocabulary of skills. These skills are our words. The more words we have the more complex and compelling the story we can tell. Our sentence structuring; how we sequence skills together and for what reason plays a vital role in the creation of compelling choreography. In this workshop students will learn an original piece of choreography that can be applied to Rope and Fabric. In learning this piece, students will also explore the techniques and theories of composition. We will discuss and apply the use of timing, repetition, space, directionality and shape that is necessary in creating work that surpasses aerials and becomes dance.
Sling: Sensation/Suspension/Falling/Making – Intermediate (Week A only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 16+
Week A: Mon. July 30 – Fri. Aug. 3 | 5:30 -7 pm | FFP ADS 1
Prerequisite: Two years of aerial study.
This sling (we’ll use knotted fabrics as slings) repertory class will present a non-traditional challenging approach to aerial work through a peculiar, sensational lens and artsy journey of the sling. Beginning with a warm up that tries to delayer our inhibitions, we will continue to recognize and alter our self-consciousness in the learning/sharing and performing process. The sling material will explore an articulate choreographic bridge between offered ideas and open interpretation that delves deeply into the play within tension, and how to connect your energy with the apparatus, fellow artists and the space. Finding the push between the floor, apparatus and gravity permits a resonant continuity between each element. Merging ideas from dance, circus, art installation, sound art, politics, ritual, improvisation, make-believe, and somatic magic: we will wake up our ignored senses; we will feel our own pulse within the choreography. Be unapologetic, present and generous. We will create a micro-world demonstrating how artists can create the environment they crave.
Sling: Technique and Artistry – Intermediate (Week B only)
$145 (limit 18) Ages 14+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 5:30 -7 pm | CU 150
Prerequisites: Students should have aerial experience on vertical or bar apparatus and be able to invert / pull over comfortably and repeatedly from the ground and invert in the air; and do a one knee hang (bar apparatus) or a “between the fabric” knee climb.
The aerial sling offers potential for strength, flexibility, spinning and dropping skills in and around the loop. We’ll explore what it means to hang, climb, spin, wind up, roll out and drop into this versatile and accessible apparatus. Focus will be on developing a range of technical skills and sequences, but we’ll also work on creative transitions and personalized movement. Spinning is not required, but it is an element that will be explored daily, with non-spinning variations offered.
Softly Swaying – Restorative Aerial Yoga. All Levels. (Week B only)
$145 (limit 10) Ages 14+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug 10 | 5:30 – 7 pm | FFP ADS 1
Need to reset and restore your body and mind after a hard day of aerial? Come rejuvenate by floating in an aerial hammock while incorporating various relaxation techniques to help your tired muscles reset for the next day. This class size is limited so each participant has their own aerial hammock! Your nervous system will move from sympathetic (fight or flight) to parasympathetic (rest and digest). We’ll also incorporate ideokinesis (imagined movement), marma points (relaxation trigger points) and yoga nidra (sleep yoga) which have all been scientifically proven to assist in the restoration of body/mind connection. Your hands, arms, body, mind and soul will love you for this one.
Utilizing Laban Movement Analysis in Aerial Choreography (Week B only)
$145 (limit 19) Ages 16+
Mon. Aug. 6 – Fri. Aug. 10 | 1 pm – 2:30 pm | CU 150
Prerequisites: Participants should be comfortable with basic trapeze skills and be interested in choreography.
The basic Effort (Space, Flow, Time and Weight) and Shape concepts of Rudolf Laban and its application to aerial composition will be explored through structured improvisation and spoken word, on the floor and in the air! Effort (the inner impulse to move) and Shape (inner shaping and shaping to equipment) are principles that we can apply to our dance as we build a shared vocabulary on dance trapezes, crafting our own pieces as well as developing skills to observe others’ dances. A variety of music will be intentionally used throughout. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laban_movement_analysis