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date: 20 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter introduces an approach to teaching dance improvisation in a university setting which invites students to search beneath their learnt dance techniques and familiar movement patterns in order to uncover their most fundamental levels of ‘creaturely knowing’, a term used by Maxine Sheets-Johnstone, and ‘somaesthetic sensing’, a term used by Richard Shusterman. Sourcing movement through this improvisational approach has the potential to heighten and broaden students’ sense of self-identity and stimulate their creativity and artistry. In the process, students come to understand their integral relationship with, and their connection to, the ecology of the classroom and, by inference, a world ecology. Specific links with the biological and neurological sciences and the artistic and educational practice of improvisation are espoused, along with the educational value of such a practice within academia.

Keywords: improvisation, dance education, somatic sensing, intuition, sense perception, somaesthetics, self-identity, eco-choreography, higher education, dance and neuroscience

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