Monday, August 10, 2009

I need to write something. This is something I often find echoing in my mind a lot. I am a rebel though and don't always take direction well, certainly not from myself.

Today I was folding laundry, something I sometimes enjoy doing just for the reason that it is such an "artist's brain" activity for me. It often gets the brain off and running. This time I started thinking about a piece of homework that had been given to us. List 25 words that mean Happy, Sad and Angry... do not use a thesaurus. So I kept a list for two weeks sitting next to my computer and anytime no matter where I was when I thought of a word I found a way to make not of it. So I had lists of synonyms for these words. Apparently when this assignment was turned in some of us did it this way and some of us listed 25 things that made us feel that way. The next stage is to flip it around and do it opposite of how you did it the first time. I know this exercise would be super easy for me. I mean who can't list 25 things that piss them off. Nifty. However as I was folding laundry I started to thing, what is angry? What is Happy? What is Sad?

I realized that these states that we all take for granted as being a kind of they are what they are thing are also highly subject to personal perspective just like everything else. I have never even taken the time in my life to ask these questions. I can't believe that I haven't since I am so highly fascinated by the concept that no two people ever experience anything in exactly the same manner. I mean how could I miss the fact that those three emotions (and how many others?) must feel completely different to different people.

Something that I found even more disturbing was the fact that I couldn't easily describe these states in myself. What does Happy feel like. What physical sensations are there? what emotional content is there at that moment? How is the world appearing to my eyes at that moment? Although, I am seeing the importance of these questions today I have not yet sat down and tried to answer them. I think perhaps this is the next logical step to take for this kind of work.

I think it's probably especially important when working in a group. What if a choreographer is asking for a specific feeling or emotion from a group, but yet each individual in that group has a different interpretation of what that emotion is? Perhaps then it's important to look at what specific emotion works with the individual to create a cohesive look throughout the group? Ten different emotions all creating the same expression?

All just things rattling around in my brain at two in the morning. It's not like I think this isn't anything that hasn't already been discussed ad nauseam. It's just something I personally haven't looked at too much.

1 comment:

  1. I think it's going to be hard to pin answers to those questions down because they even change from day to day in the same person! What you associate with feeling happy today might not be the same as tomorrow or yesterday. For me, i know the whole sensation of "being happy" a couple years ago was quite different to what it is now. It doesn't mean i wasn't happy then, just that i experienced it differently.

    The group question is interesting. Extremely cohesive groups that come to mind for me are sports teams and military units. I wonder if the approach to training them to feel and think in sync is the same as for dancers? I'm also wondering now if it might be easier to choreograph a story in dance, so that it's more like a movie or show where each performer can play a specific character suited to their unique emotional experience.