Senior Capstone I
I believe in teaching because it allows me to facilitate a communal space, a space where lived experiences are shared. In this open, and hopefully generous space, I encourage my students (and myself) to go beyond the external, to access something deeper than just form and placement. At this point in my life, teaching movement is my way of bringing people together. It is from this place of shared movement and experiences that I am able to fully reveal my inimitability. Here I can sensorially explore the many facets of selfhood and expand my perceptions of reality. I am simultaneously a teacher and a student. I do not believe in a hierarchical model of learning where “learner” and “giver of knowledge” are rigidly defined. Rather, I support mutual respect where importance is placed on collectively creating reality, truth and understanding. We all experience the world differently- with our unique vantage points. If these vantage points are shared, the potential exists for higher levels of knowing, seeing and believing.
I am myself in the classroom. This means many things and is constantly evolving as I evolve. At times I feel fragile, in other moments overly exposed. I’m often relieved when I am reminded that we are just dancing, and at other times I am empowered knowing we are dancing. Mostly, I feel enlivened with potential and appreciation. I hold appreciation for creative expression, for the ability to transparently reveal one’s self to others. This is my constant reminder of why- why this, why dance? I carry this feeling with me into the classroom. I am reminded of this vulnerable beauty every time I really “see” with all of my senses who’s sharing the space with me. This is not to say that there aren’t days when I experience disconnection, confusion, or even frustration. I simply allow myself to feel those emotions too, knowing that they will eventually pass. I ride the wave, sometimes longer than anticipated or desired, but by softening into situations and journeying with my students, I always find “it” again.
One way in which I find this indescribable “it,” is through improvisation. This research in spontaneity and wonderment has heightened my awareness of internal sensing where I channel what I need, even if my mind is unaware. It is deep within my core, a fire burning, furthering my choreographic practice, my personal movement development and my sense of belonging in this world. Here I am home. This state of being present is what I attempt to infuse into my classroom. Even if the subject is technical in nature, I continually encourage myself and my students to find that same sense of play, discovery and energetic manipulation while dancing to set material or the “known.” I usually incorporate improvisational elements into all of my classes, where each student is encouraged to find their “home” within the framework of my objectives.
I also encourage questioning this process along the way. Answers might not always be found, but often supportive bridges can be formed which link new discoveries of bodily knowledge and can transcend one’s current state of being. I believe that play is a necessary tool to encourage greater learning. Adult play, in the form of improvisation, is an avenue (a fun one at that) to remain young in spirit, to be fascinated with life forms around us, other human beings and our own internal/external makeup. The classroom can be a nurturing setting for the exploration of Self- individually and the Self at large. This does not have to always be a serious endeavor. It can be muddy, wild, broken and full of ambiguity. We are all searching for meaning and belonging in this chaotic and mysterious world. It is only by recognizing that we are all one in the same, that we are part of something greater that cannot be defined through words, that we can tap into our vitality, into the life force. Why not share in uncovering our light?
- Senior Capstone Project . Sarah Pinnock. 12/2016 - 03/2017
- Faculty mentor for performance/creative research in "This is your Paradise." Saxton received a Travel Grant through the Office of Undergraduate Research and Alberge received an Excellence Award (Alberge) for the research and performance of this work in Vermont and NYC. Florian Alberge, Breeanne Saxton. 10/10/2015 - 10/18/2015
- UNIVERSITY OF UTAH, SALT DANCE FEST Faculty for summer intensive. Classes include: Pilates, "Awakening Dimensionality through Sensation" and "Tennis Shoe Technique." . 06/2013 - 06/2017
- WESTMINSTER COLLEGE; SLC Adjunct faculty in the Dance Department. Courses: Improvisation-based Composition I and II (Dance 260-01, 270-01). 09/2016 - 05/2017
- RIRIE-WOODBURY DANCE COMPANY; SLC Faculty for Professional Intensive. Classes include: "A Dynamic Practice: Awakening Performance Dimensionality through Reiki" (performance practices influenced by somatics), "A New Climate: Testing Presence"(composition in conversation with improvisation), and "Hybrid Choreography: A Collaborative Exchange," co-taught with Artistic Director Daniel Charon. 07/2014 - 08/2017
- Guest Artist for Westminster College (SLC) in the Department of Theatre and Dance. 10/01/2015 - 12/07/2015
- MIDDLEBURY COLLEGE; VT Teaching residency and performance through the Department of Theatre and Dance. Classes included: Improvisation, Modern Technique and Composition for advanced dance major courses. 10/2015 - 10/2015
- UTAH VALLEY UNIVERSITY; OREM, UT Guest teaching in the Dance Department, Contemporary Technique for advanced dance majors. 09/2015 - 09/2015
- Guest Faculty, Dance Program, Creighton University, Omaha, NE. 02/13/2015 - 02/14/2015