Sylvia Rijmer

Published: 21 November 2018

Negotiating Deliberate Choice-Making: Insights from an interdisciplinary and multimodal encounter during the making of a New Contemporary Dance.

Sylvia Rijmer's talk will be on Tuesday 26th November 2-3pm in the Seminar Room, 62 Hillhead St. All welcome.

About Sylvia

Sylvia Rijmer is an independent dance artist, researcher and teacher, based in Lisbon, Portugal. She studied at the The Juilliard School (USA), Elmhurst Ballet School (U.K), Het Nationale Ballet Academie Theaterschool (NL) and Ballet Sumber Cipta (ID), and holds degrees and certificates from the Royal Academy of Dancing (UK), and the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (UK). Deeply interested in the capacity of human cognition to translate movement into more creative and efficient currents of organisational flow and sequential connectivity, she encourages collaborative, interdisciplinary and multimodal processes, to build a dynamic and interactive mode of learning, understanding and application within dance making.

Talk Summary

To evaluate the ingrained habitual movement patterns of today’s contemporary dance practitioners heavily biased by their own heritage, is to either undisputedly accept them or to consider alternative modes and causes for corporeal practice and presentation. The need for current choreographic systems to contemplate the tension between hereditary gestures of the past and the continuing appreciation of the dancer as a subjective co-creative agent poses a necessary theoretical and practical challenge. In light of the unavoidable historicity of dance, and the highly politicised context under which dances are traditionally made and (re)presented, there is the need to seek new instances of creative singularities (as defined by Lepecki, 2016) as potentials for individuated artistic expression. Sylvia’s presentation will focus on contemporary dancers as co-negotiators of a choreographic process which encourages deliberate choice making in the generation of personalised movements according to their own “Body Logic”. The Body Logic Method (BLM), which engages choreographers and dancers as co-creative agents in the making of such a dance, is inspired by the need to re-evaluate learned movement habits commonly found in contemporary studio work. My proposed method fosters dancers to actively and deliberately participate within an artistic practice using an approach to movement research which is cognitively grounded in focused attention. Using improvisation as a neutralising platform which highlights (self-)exploration and personal responsibility, the BLM is designed to encourage subjective creativity and idiosyncratic ipseity in the generation of novel artistic movement patterns.


First published: 21 November 2018