Does a choreographer teach?
This is a question I ask myself often.
As I’ve studied pedagogy in the last two years, I have come up with more questions than answers. I think that will continue to happen for me. In fact, I know it will.
Pedagogy is the “how” of learning. It is the art and science behind teaching, that is constantly changing.
I love teaching, but there is so much MORE to it than I ever realized.
If you are a teacher of any sort (and I think we all become “teachers” at some point in our lives), I urge you to study the theory behind being a teacher.
In my opinion, a choreographic process should not differ so much from classroom work. It should be a similar experience even when the final task may be totally separate.
By this I mean: a choreographer should also be a teacher — striving to facilitate learning experiences for everyone involved.
For me, being a teacher / choreographer with the right approach involves:
- Awareness of the learners in the room, including oneself
- Openness to new possibilities
- Improvisational tactics – knowing when to shift gears & veer away from the “plan”
- Constant research behind the people as well as the subject at hand
- Realizing that what works now won’t necessarily work tomorrow or next year
And it goes on and on. But that is the beauty of it!
My goal as a choreographer is to offer the same kind of experience I would in a classroom. I want the dancers (people) to feel safe in any kind of setting experiencing, sharing and appreciating each other.
But it is NOT easy.
It will be different every single day.
We are all learners including as a “teacher.” We learn from each other and we have to be vulnerable in doing so.
Thoughts? I think this goes with any kind of learning, but of course this is just the kind of learning I am constantly thinking about. Please share!!
All of these photos are from a recent choreographic process where I had the opportunity to work with these dancers in TX at Ballet Lubbock ❤