Dance Improvisation



Falling and rising – grace and wilderness 
(all levels)
We will learn to fall and rise with grace through releasing our limbs and spine and exploring connections between others and ourselves. Finding support from the floor and our partner, we will explore the spaces between holding on and letting go. We will learn tools to trust, play off-balance, rise and fly. This workshop is for all levels.

Dancing our migrating gaze (intermediate)
Through improvisation scores and Contact Improvisation exercises, we will explore different ways of using our vision while dancing with each other. Sharp and soft focus, gazing, closing the eyes, observing, witnessing… We will bring awareness to our eyes (open and close) and see how vision affects our dance. « To see is not only to register something, but to learn about it ». We will watch actively and let ourselves be seen. We will awaken our senses and let ourselves travel through space and time, migrating with our gaze.


A dance to be revealed (all levels)
We will explore the relationship between sounds and movements, as well as identify and investigate different components of improvisation, such as rhythms, patterns, impulses, beginnings/endings, phases, phrases. We will dare to dive in the moment, engage with the consequences of our actions and notice the process of holding on and letting go. Through exposing ourselves, witnessing others, receiving and giving feedbacks, we will ask ourselves: What creates meaning? This work is not about teaching a style. Everyone has his own world of possibilities. This is what needs to be revealed.

Exploring the landscape within ourselves;
Ritual and identity in performance (all levels)
A ritual  can be defined as a sequence of actions designed to focus attention, establish significance. Through it, we can attain the most important power – the power to change ourselves. In this workshop, we will be using the languages of Contact Improvisation, mouvement improvisations, and somatic explorations, to investigate the notion of ritual and identity in performance. Where do we come from ? How do we define ourselves ? How are we with each others ? Exploring the rituals of common actions (hand-shaking, warming up, etc.), intimacy, touch, blindfolded explorations, breathing exercices, sounds, time, space, the different states generated by stillness, intensity, exhaustion, repetition, duration, power dynamics, (…), we will obeserve each others and let ourselves be seen. Subjects of our own explorations, we will pay attention, hold space for one another, embrace the unknown and notice the process of holding on and letting go. « Beyond hope and fear… It leads to the far more challenging state: groundlessness — knowing that nothing ever remains the same ».

I spent many years on the road. Without a place to come back to, my body became my home. I learnt to adapt, to cultivate a sense of readiness, to listen and to pay attention to the rhythms of each steps. Contact Improvisation is about attention. Paying attention allows us to constantly be in research, to practice unknowing, to redefine ourselves in each moment. In this constant dance of holding on and letting go, we expose ourselves and witness each others. Through dance, I have been developing a greater awareness of my own body and exploring the nature of my relationships with others. I believe in Contact Improvisation as a process of transformation, which turns fear into curiosity. It is a form of political action that allows us to see and be seen, to communicate through the body, to share and study intimacy, and to find ease and flow while catching the waves.

Isabelle Kirouac has been teaching dance improvisation and Contact Improvisaiton for many years in Canada, US, Europe, South America and the Middle East. She created the Elsewhere CIDI Festival, on Lasqueti Island (BC), and has been participating to international festivals such as the Israeli Contact Improvisation Festival, Sierra Contact Improvisation Festival (US), Inesperadamente International Dance Encounter (Spain), Fuerteventura Contact Improvisation Festival (Canary Islands), Symposium Imagining Bodies (Estonia), European CI Teacher Exchange (Switzerland), etc, as well as teaching to community members, youth groups and woman groups in such diverse venues as schools, universities, theaters, and community centers.