Workshops with John Ollom

March 5, 2008

Fascinating, fantastic, fabulous: these are words that came to mind after John Ollom’s introductory two-hour workshop, “Internal Landscapes.” We started by writing our thoughts. From our writings we each selected three words from which we created a short movement sequences. In groups of three or four men, we put our sequences together – one part of this, one part of that. Then he had us modify our phrases by introducing various elements of dance composition: unison, sequence, level, direction, and space. I was sweating. It was aerobic – but I wasn’t thinking about working out. This was fun!

My second class with John – an “Ollom Technique” class – started in the floor. We relaxed. We noted tension in our bodies. He asked us to release the tension as we took off our shirts, then our trousers. For the rest of the class we were naked. The class focussed on abdominal strength and flexibility, but it was also fun. Some of the work was done with a partner. We ended with a brief choreographed sequence. I left feeling exhilarated, with a new respect for my body.

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