Introduction to Contact Improv with teacher Kathleen Rea March 42023

Saturday, 4 March 2023 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM EST

(You will be given adress once you register), Toronto, Ontario, M6R 1J6, Canada

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Regular Partial Approval - $70.00

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Saturday, 4 March 2023 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM EST

Kathleen Rea's Home Studio, (You will be given adress once you register), Toronto, Ontario, M6R 1J6, Canada.

Are you a beginner and you want to learn Contac Improvisation?



DATE: Sat March 4, 2023 - 10:00 am to 1:00 pm

LOCATION: Home studio in the Roncesvalles Toronto Area. (Studio is not wheelchair accessible because it is two flights up)

SIZE: 8 people max due to studio size

$70 Regular
$60 Upper Sliding Scale
$50 Lower Sliding Scale
$40 Still Lowest Sliding Scale
$30 Lowest Sliding Scale

- Masks are optional unless a significant Covid wave occurs in the fall.
- There will be a HEPA filter at the entrance and in the studio
- attendees must test prior to entrance (test provided)

Kathleen Rea danced with Canada’s Ballet Jorgen, National Ballet of Canada & Tiroler Landestheater (Austria). She fell in love with contact improvisation 22 years ago & has been involved in the community ever since. She has choreographed over 40 dance works and has been nominated for 5 DORA awards. Kathleen has a learning disability which means writing takes 6 times longer than average. It is one of life’s mysteries that despite this struggle she loves writing and is a published author (The Healing Dance). She has a Master’s in Expressive Arts with a minor in Psychology. She is a certified teacher of the Axis Syllabus and Buteyko Breathing. She is the director of REAson d’etre dance, a Toronto not-for-profit dance company that is contact improvisation based and produces a weekly jam, a Film Fest, and dance theatre productions. She has autism & works to educate the world about neurodiversity. She developed the well-read REAson d’etre dance Dance Jam Guidelines (download here) which over the past 20 years have influenced consent culture in the contact improvisation worldwide community. She also is the founder of the Contact Improv Consent Culture Blog. Kathleen Rea's Demo Reel

This is Kathleen Rea's definition of Contact Improvisation:

  • Contact Improvisation is a social dance involving touch, in which momentum between two or more people is used to create and inspire dance movements. It is typically practiced in a jam situation in which a group of people gathers in person to improvise together.
  • Contact Improvisation evolved from explorations of a group of dancers in the early 1970s, which included Steve Paxton, Nancy Stark Smith, Danny Lepkoff, Lisa Nelson, Karen Nelson, Nita Little, Andrew Harwood, and Ray Chung. Steve Paxton brought his former training in Aikido to the form, using the idea of "surfing" momentum to communicate, dance, and express.
  • Dancers move with a constantly changing physical reality. In Contact Improvisation there are no set leaders and followers as in other social dance forms. Instead, there is a back-and-forth with dancers sometimes leading, sometimes following, and all variations between these two roles.
  • Techniques include rolling point of contact, balancing over a partner's centre of gravity, and "listening" with one's skin surface. While there is technique involved in the form, the aesthetic I reach for is the quality of the relationship within a dance.
  • The form is potentially accessible to all people, including those with no previous dance training and people with physical disabilities. I say potentially because "-isms" such as racism and ableism historically have reduced or inhibited access. The -isms that are embedded in the broader cultures in which Contact Improvisation is practiced are often acted out in Contact Improvisation communities.
  • Another limitation to access is the lack of consent culture in Contact Improvisation communities, both on the dance floor and off. Since the "me-too" movement there has been a growing understanding of the value of building and supporting consent culture in Contact Improvisation, along with some backlash against this movement.
  • This definition of Contact Improvisation is Kathleen's personal feeling of what Contact Improvisation is to her. Others will describe it differently, and this variance and diversity of opinions are for her one of the strengths of Contact Improvisation.  One of the founders, Nancy Stark Smith, wrote: “Throughout CI’s development, a gentle anarchy has prevailed over its organization.” Kathleen feels that this is a fundamental aspect of the form.


REAson d'etre dance productions

REAson d'etre dance stages and programs events (Dance-theatre, workshops, Film Festivals based on Contact Improvisation and functional movement so we can utilize the inclusiveness that can be a part of these movement forms. Our vision is for both professional dancers and everyday people to be inspired and invigorated by Contact Improvisation and functional movement. REAson d'etre dance strives to provide artistic expression through movement, inclusive of age, ability, level or background. We say that we strive because due to lack of resources, the iniquities of society, and competing access needs inevitably access will be affected despite our attempts to make things as accessible as possible.

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