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H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? *discuss the importance of breath to life. *every part of the body needs oxygen, which allow cells to release needed energy.

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Presentation on theme: "H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? *discuss the importance of breath to life. *every part of the body needs oxygen, which allow cells to release needed energy."— Presentation transcript:

1 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? *discuss the importance of breath to life. *every part of the body needs oxygen, which allow cells to release needed energy *Breathing is a natural process that when uses properly can help improve your movement skills.

2 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? Lungs are soft, spongy, elastic organs that provide a passageway for air. The lungs are surrounded by the ribs for protection and muscles for movement.

3 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? The diaphragm is the most important muscle of the respiratory system. As the primary mover, it is a large, dome-shaped muscle that lies within the rib cage. It might help to visualize an open parachute inside the rib cage. As one inhales, the diaphragm contracts, moves downward, and flattens out. This allows the lungs and ribs to expand a small amount in all planes; this increases the volume of the thoracic cavity.” Dance Anatomy, Jacqui Greene Hass, page 34. place your hands on the diaphragm and practice strong breaths out to feel the diaphragm at work.

4 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? Warm-up coordinated breath, use imagery to breath into body parts and expanding the space in the body

5 D O YOU EVER FEEL WORN OUT AFTER A DANCE ?... YOUR MOST LIKELY NOT BREATHING CORRECTLY ! If stamina is in question, the student has probably been rehearsing with upper-chest breathing or shallow breathing while holding the belly in. With upper chest breathing air enters only the top of the lungs, which raises your center of gravity. If your chest is too high you will find it hard to balance and have difficulty with freedom of the shoulders. You have created a leaner look for the moment but have reduced the ability of your diaphragm and lung to work properly----thus limiting oxygen intake. The diaphragm also has muscle attachment to the hip flexors. By aggressively sucking your tummy in you also limit the movement of you hip flexors causing you to be less flexible. Dance Anatomy, Jacqui Greene Hass, page 35.

6 W HEN ONE INHALES, SHE SHOULD EXPAND ; WHEN ONE EXHALES, SHE SHOULD CONTRACT. B REATH CAN BE A POWERFUL TOOL FOR FREEDOM IN MOVEMENT. Lets try a dance phrase using breath and movement together as aids for stamina. We all move together we all breath together….taking my movement apply your dynamics and breath to the phrase to change the internal tempo…

7 Cool down and reflect Please address how breath can aid your ability to dance? How can you apply breath to all movement not just dance? What are the benefit to using breath in dance?

8 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? Inhale All dance, all movement, all human life, begin the same way: with a breath. Whether we are aware of it or not -- the rise and fall of the chest caused by our breathing informs everything we do. We often take it for granted. Young dancers are so involved with larger, flashier movements that they underestimate the power of the breath in dance. Understanding the importance of the breath can help dancers experience a full dynamic and expressive range as well as a heightened kinesthetic experience. And it can help teachers bring their students past the level of mere technical proficiency into the level of true artistry. But first, we have to understand how the breath effects dance. Holding the breath creates a stifled, lifeless dancer. By connecting to the breath, dancers reaffirm their most basic human ability and connect with fellow dancers (as well as their audiences). Traditional classical ballet strives to create the illusion that the dancing body is something otherworldly: a princess, a swan, a fairy, a sylph. Physical exertion is camouflaged; the breath is hidden. Contemporary dance -- be it ballet, modern, jazz -- rejects the fantasy world of classical ballet and embraces the human form with all of

9 H OW DOES BREATH EFFECT DANCE ? its potential for movement. Contemporary dance does not deny or hide the breath; it embraces it, using breath as impetus for movement. The gentle flow of the inhale and exhale carries us along, much like waves carry a boat on the ocean. We gesture with an arm, articulate with a leg, all while our bodies rise and fall upon the shape-flow support of our breath. Fighting this natural rhythm creates a dancing body that is unnatural, not of this world (or at least not comfortable with it). Below are four ways to begin the investigation of how the breath is vital to dance performance. Simply by bringing our awareness to these points, we can find a full, more satisfying experience for both the dancer and the viewer. Anchor the Mind By consciously focusing on the inhale and exhale, we can anchor our minds in the present moment. In contemporary life, we often brag about our ability to multi-task. In fact, our school systems teach it as a vital ability. The result: a generation where people think about one thing while doing another. For the dancer, this is disastrous. The dancer on the stage that is not fully present, seems distant, detached, and robotic to the audience. The student in the dance class that is not fully present misses important corrections and opportunities for improvement.

10 However, by bringing awareness to the inhale and exhale during dance, we bring presence to this moment in movement. Martha Graham said "All that is important is this moment in movement." This 'presence' connects us to our bodies, our teachers, our fellow students, and our viewers. Support (shape-flow) Our breath, whether we are aware of it or not, informs and supports all of our movement. Go ahead and try to stand completely can't, at least not for long. The rise and fall of the diaphragm and chest goes on in the background of all our dance moves. Even more interesting is that the same move done on an inhale or done on an exhale creates a different expression. Try this experiment with a friend. Have your friend hold their arms out to the side at shoulder level. Then, on an inhale, have them slowly lift their arms overhead. Next, have them repeat the arm movement with an exhale instead of an inhale. Notice a difference in the subtle expression of the movement? Does one seem more aspiring? Does one seem more resigned? Now try the same movement while holding the breath. Do you find it lifeless? Becoming aware of how breath informs and gives organic shape to our movement can help the dancer develop a finely tuned and sensitive instrument.

11 Texture Beyond the subtleties of shape-flow support mentioned above, breath- phrasing textures our dance by shaping, enhancing, and enlivening our movement phrases. The highs and lows, the sustained inhale, the sudden exhale, and the quick staccato bursts of a cough are natural phrasings to which all our bodies have instant access. However, dancers who ignore the organic pattern of their breathing perform movement with a monotonous, dehumanizing quality. Using the breath as a phrasing tool, dancers can reach new heights and depths of expressiveness. Body Not only does the breath provide mental and expressive advantages, but it also provides practical advantages. The breath, by providing oxygen to working muscles and the brain, aids the body to work at its optimum level. Without that vital oxygen to supply our muscles and brains, we cannot function at our best ability. Dancers who breath shallow or, even worse, hold their breath, deplete their bodies oxygen supply and quickly weaken physical stamina and slow down mental processes.

12 Exhale In this age of super-connectedness where a thousand miles are traversed in fractions of a second via cell phones and the internet, we secretly desire real human connection. Dancing with a full awareness of the breath resonates deep within the viewer's subconscious--creating that connection. Our longing to escape to the theatre and television and literature to see fantasy worlds has changed to a desire for the real, to affirm our day-to-day experience. We want reality T.V., true stories at the theatre, factual memoirs to read, and living, breathing human beings dancing on the stage. James Robey is Founding Artistic Director of the Bare Bones Dance Project, Artistic Director of Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance and Adjunct Faculty member at The Hartt School at University of Hartford where he teaches Horton Modern technique and Jazz Dance. James is active in the Connecticut, New York, and National dance communities as a guest artist, master teacher, independent choreographer, and lecturer. For more information visit Article Source:

13 Apply the information as we dance in class today Warm-up focusing on breathing and expanding spaces in the body Center phrase Breath Across the floor Ticket out the door …explain one of the four ways breath effects the body and how it applied to you for the class….

14 T HE F OUR W AYS B REATH EFFECTS DANCE ! Anchor the Mind Support shape and flow Add Texture Addresses the body

15 H OW CAN YOU CREATE A DANCE PHRASE USING BREATH ? Review information Apply to movement Warm-up Create a dance phrase using breath to create texture, connected movements, focus and released control. Your body is an instrument that plays using breath. Your phrase must have a beginning middle and end and express the expansion and release in the body as you breath. You may add and are not limited to: using noise, dynamic, levels, spatial design, facings, etc. (Bdays honors improvisation)

16 See power point cps 5 classes Photos Breaking Bounds August 29 th –Sept. 10 th

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