A Choreographic Exploration of Site Context Open Access

Hammond, Emily Talley (2014)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/cc08hg605?locale=en
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Abstract

Site-specific choreography has been explored throughout the history of modern dance by many choreographers, including Anna Halprin, Meredith Monk, and Trisha Brown. By taking dance out of the studio and off the traditional stage, choreographers find new opportunities for introducing unique movement ideas into their dances and invite audiences to view space through an altered point of view. In my research, I investigate the effect of site context, or the space in which a piece of choreography is created and performed, on the process of creation and the overall qualities that the choreography exudes. As part of this process, I choreographed a site-specific solo on Emory University's campus and translated it into the Schwartz dance studio. Conversely, I commissioned Blake Beckham to set a solo on me in the Schwartz dance studio, and translated it into the site used for my original work. The project may be viewed as an abstract version of a reciprocal transplant experiment, in which the choreography represents the genetic differences between the two core solos, and the sites in which each was created may be considered analogous to the environmental factors. Through this process, the four pieces have developed unique qualities through the influences of both spaces, and my intimate understanding of the sites and the choreography has been enhanced.

Table of Contents

I. Introduction 1 II. Historical Background and Choreographic Context of Site-Specific Dance: 6 III. Approaching the Site: Crossing the Rails and Dotting the Slides: 14 a. Initiation: 14 b. Extension: 17 c. Completion and Filming: 21 IV. Addressing the Studio: Terminal: 24 V. Returning to the Site: Incommunicable: 29 Reexamining the Studio: Shedding the Structure: 34 VII. Welcoming the Audience: Performances: 39 VIII. Conclusion: 44 Appendix A: Promotional Flyer: 49 Appendix B: Concert Program: 50 Appendix C: SIRE Budget: 51 Appendix D: CCA Project Grant Proposal: 52 Appendix E: Video Material: 53 Appendix F: Performance Photographs: 54 References: 62

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