Duets in American Post-Modern Dance: woMEN: A written work researching the phenomena between homo and hetero duets among the female and male sexes In conjunction with Performance Pieces Unicorn Girls (Senior Project I) and Tracking Atlas (Senior Project II)
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I am a mover and a dancer that finds the body to be an all-encompassing expression of language. Usually that language consists of questions that begin at the roots of Caribbean dance and moving into that of Contemporary Modern. I have found that often there is a fear and a level of discomfort when it comes to discussing the subjects of race, sex, and religion. However, for me, I find these uncomfortable topics tantalizing. And thus what better way to explore such subjects than on the stage with the one body that encompasses all of the stereotypes we see. Prejudice and judgment are innate in all beings and it is not something to be concealed but rather understood and accepted. We should express these thought processes and notice whether these stereotypes are valid.
My approach to dance is to remain open to criticism and doubt. In the context of dance, my work historically originates in the roots of oppression, and I am heavily inspired by dance as a means of activism with theatrical elements. I question the fear to speak about things that the majority may not agree with or perhaps has yet to even think of. I find the working of the body as an athletic build of muscles and bones that can be morphed into a conjunction of various cultures. Someone’s race, gender, and sex inevitably speaks to his or her style. I prefer to name the style a stereotype and erase the negative connotations that come with labels, in order to enhance and dramatize them through the body in the form of dance. Let’s ask all the questions to break the biases that lie in the bodice of various societies. I want to break the cultural boundaries between countries, languages, and laws through dance. Thus, those who say that the body is not an affective means of communication have yet to see me move.
Unicorn Girls (Senior Project I)
Choreographed by Nadine Muñiz
Performed by Rebecca Capper, Zena Coles, Naja Gordon, Camila Hernandez, Madeline Hopfield, Gwendolyn Knapp, and Savannah Lyons-Anthony
Utilizing different modes of media specifically that of text, music/sound, images, and video, can evoke different types of movement when used to improvise to. All the media I am using is through a “hook-up culture” lens. “Hook-Up” defined by American culture varies form person to person and can range from kissing to intercourse. I am seeing how explicit or un-explicit the movement can be on the subject of hook-up culture through my dancers’ movement. From this lens I hoped to see the strengths and weaknesses of trying to be too “literal” on stage.
Tracking Atlas (Senior Project II)
Choreographed by Nadine Muñiz
Performed by Nadine Muñiz and Yaël Krinsky
The duet form in American Post-Modern dance is a balance between technique and improvisation, in relation to the improvisational techniques that lead to new and fresh movement outside of set technique forms. In Tracking Atlas, I am interested in the physicality of the female body and if it can show the same kind of expressivity that I have seen in homo-male duets and hetero-duets. Can the female body be seen as a strong body without equating it to a masculine body? What does strength mean physically in post-modern dance for females? What does it mean to perform as a female on stage what can be described as “physically taxing”?
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Muniz, Nadine Bernadette, "Duets in American Post-Modern Dance: woMEN: A written work researching the phenomena between homo and hetero duets among the female and male sexes In conjunction with Performance Pieces Unicorn Girls (Senior Project I) and Tracking Atlas (Senior Project II)" (2014). Senior Projects Spring 2014. 74.
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