contact festival kuala lumpur

July 23-29,2019

Teachers and workshop descriptions
(arranged by alphabetical order of surnames)
Emily Bowman

Emily Bowman is an independent dance artist, choreographer, performer and teacher based in Melbourne. Her artistic practice is grounded in performance improvisation, CI research and real-time choreography. Emily has taught several workshops in Australia, as well as in Germany, Malaysia, India and Canada. She is one-half of [ two for now ] with Joey Lehrer, where they have a research-based CI practice that spans performance, teaching and documentation since 2012. She is also a co-producer of the Australian Contact Improvisation Convergence (ACIC) and a co-producer of <proximity> magazine podcast. Emily graduated with a BA in Dance from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts in 2013. She is currently studying in an Executive Master of Arts program at Melbourne University. Emily is excited to return to the KL festival for the second year in a row, and is looking forward to deepening the practice and collaborations with practitioners in the region.

Joey Lehrer

Joey Lehrer is an improvisational artist, movement teacher, and bookkeeper. He has studied CI with State of Flux, Martin Hughes, Karen Nelson, Ray Chung, Joerg Hassmann, Gustavo Lecce and Andrew Harwood, and has taught and performed extensively across Australia, as well as in New Zealand, Malaysia, Germany and the US. As a key contributor to the Australian CI landscape, Joey has been a co-organiser of the Australian Contact Improvisation Convergence (ACIC) and a co-editor of <Proximity> magazine. His most recent CI projects include co-producing the <proximity> magazine podcast, being one-half of the Melbourne-based CI duo [ two for now ] with Emily Bowman, and mentoring new and emerging CI teachers. In his teaching, Joey enjoys creating a sense of playful focus, where improvisation allows a deepening of concepts and skills. He also enjoys the interplay of CI with his other somatic practices.

Mimi Lo

Mimi Lo is the Artistic Director of DanceAbility Hong Kong. She is certified teacher of DanceAbility International and ContaKids International and a graduate of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, majoring in choreography and dance directing. Mimi's current focus is contact improvisation and Argentine tango. In the US, she participated in Nancy Stark Smith's January Workshop + Long Dance. Mimi organizes contact jams and teaches contact improvisation mainly in Hong Kong and Guangzhou.

Somatics and Contact Improvisation

How do we prepare our bodies for dance? Through somatic practice, we perceive ourselves from within through sensation. By getting to know how different body parts work together and exploring our relationship with gravity, not only will our sensitivity be enhanced, a relaxed body with newfound coordination will also be found. When we understand our own habits or limitations, we can dance more consciously in a relaxed state, opening new potentials and using our bodies more efficiently for weight transfer, support and balance in our dance.

Hiroko Takahashi

Hiroko graduated from Nippon Sport Science University and was formerly with the Keiko Takeya Contemporary Dance Company. She began her journey in contact improvisation in 1997 while studying contemporary dance in France, and has since gone on to study the dance form with teachers such as Nancy Stark Smith, Ray Chung, Nina Martin, and Kirstie Simson. She co-founded Spiral, now known as CINN (Contact Improvisation Nippon Network), in 2003 and the Tokyo Contact Impro Festival in 2007. Hiroko is also a Yamuna Body Rolling Practitioner.

Sensitivity and Openness

In this workshop, we will look for a relaxed state where we are in tune with our own centers and are connected from inside to outside. Starting with the fundamentals such as being present, surrendering to the floor and sharing weight, we will then develop improvisational material via contact. With sensitivity and openness to the moment, let us take off to the sky and discover pathways of unlimited possibilities!

Xiaochu Yu

Ming-chu Yu, aka Xiaochu, is a dancer, performer, and improvisation teacher in Taiwan. She has been invited to perform and teach improvisation in numerous festivals in Japan, Korea, China (Beijing and Shanghai), and Malaysia. She is a member of Ku & Dancers.

Touching, listening, and moving

This workshop will include physical exercises, listening practice, improvisation scores, observation and discussion. By connecting and partnering with others, we can deepen our awareness through movement.