Sourcing research of Nancy Stark Smith, Steve Paxton, and decades of practice in the form, Sarah Young and Sarah Konner lead a weeklong Contact Improvisation intensive to develop your physical practices and tune your awareness to open to the unknowns of spontaneous dance-making.

Where: Ponderosa, Gutshof 3, 16248 Lunow-Stolzenhagen, Germany

When: 16-23 July 2023

This is a weeklong Contact Improvisation* intensive led by Sarah Young and Sarah Konner. Sourcing research of Nancy Stark Smith, Steve Paxton, and decades of practice in the form, we will build on practical physical studies and ways of tuning our awareness to open into the unknowns of spontaneous dance-making. (Weekend option is also available.)

We’ll start the day with dropping into subtle physical choice-making through the Feldenkrais Method®, Body-Mind Centering®, and Contemplative Dance Practice. Then, the later morning will be a dive into the study of physical mechanics, momentum, gravity, weight-sharing, rolling, spiraling, and falling; our reflexes at work in Contact Improvisation. In the afternoons, we’ll experiment with physical predicaments and scores for shaping individual and collective attention. The evenings will be for jamming, viewing dance films, relaxing in the sauna, and conversations under the stars.

During the weekend, morning classes will continue. There will be an Underscore with live music and an experiential Talk-Through beforehand, jams and group scores, one-on-ones and time for swimming, walks, and enjoying the summer in the countryside.

This intensive is for anyone wanting a facilitated intensive study of Contact Improvisation and is best suited for those with, at least, some CI jam or class experience. You should already know how to reach your hands towards the floor when falling and be responsive to your own self-care needs. We ask that you come ready to contribute positively and collaboratively to the group dynamic.

We will overlap with P.O.R.C.H. Week 2 with Abby Crain, Mor Dermer, and Márcio Kerber Canabarro and P.O.R.C.H. WEEKEND WORKSHOP 3 – Sudden Matter (dialogues with diversity) with Octavio Dagnino, so there will be opportunities to synergize with this long-standing epic program of Ponderosa.

Registration includes accommodation for seven nights in a shared dormitory, studio or in your own tent, a simple breakfast and two healthy cooked meals per day—prepared by the onsite chef, with vegetarian and vegan options.

*Contact improvisation has been described as a post-modern folk dance, a moving meditation, a ride on the collective momentum of two or more bodies moving together in space. Although always improvised, there are strategies and practices that support this dance that make the physical and psychological practice safer, more refined, and more communicative. The dances often—but don’t have to—include falling, rolling, touching and being touched, weight taking and giving, being upside down, dancing with disorientation, following a point of physical contact, and moving with subtlety and exertion. This form can be intimate, revitalizing, raucous, thrilling, uncomfortable, restorative, confusing, mindful and more.

How to register:

Weeklong Intensive:

Weekend Intensive:

Costs for participants:
Weeklong Intensive: 660€.
Weekend Intensive: 240€.
Early Bird pricing until 25 May.

Contact details:

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