Sidra Bell has crafted a unique and comprehensive approach and system to unlocking the creative potential in each artist by developing movement that evolves from the inside out, both physically and intellectually. The workshop explores a highly articulate body emphasizing organization, functionality, description, effort, risk, clarity, observation, abandon, impulse, breath, gesture, pliable skin, sound, direction, and line. Touch, therapy, one's personal psychology, use of the room as an apparatus, and physical intelligence are cornerstones of the workshop. Artists of various backgrounds and experience can discover their individual voice and a deeper physical understanding. Investigative tactics are used to instigate the imagination to find a greater sense of freedom within the movement vocabulary. Throughout the workshop the phrase work from Sidra Bell Dance New York is introduced and then immediately destroyed, dissected, and deconstructed. These frameworks challenge the dancers to investigate an extreme sense of specificity, and complexity opening the mind to possibility. The workshop utilizes collective effort in improvisations, conversational task work, dialogue, exploration, and play. The phrase work is lush, gestural, dynamic, powerful, and pulsating leaving the dancers with a feeling of exhaustion and exhilaration. Artists are pushed to remain in a constant state of choice and to work with deliberate action. Bell's work emphasizes a high degree of physicality and input from the dancers, encouraging them to execute movement with intention, play, curiosity, calm, empathy, ease, and focus.
Sidra Bell, Artistic Director of Sidra Bell Dance New York, is currently a Master Lecturer at University of the Arts (Philadelphia), was an Adjunct Professor at Barnard College (Columbia University), and has a degree in History from Yale University and an MFA in Choreography from Purchase College Conservatory of Dance. She has been awarded 1st Place Award for Choreography by the 15th Internationales Solo Tanz Theater Festival in Stuttgart, Germany (2011). Her critically acclaimed company and work has been seen throughout the United States and internationally at premiere venues in Denmark, France, Austria, Germany, Canada, Aruba, Korea, and Greece. She is a sought after master teacher and has taught her unique approach to movement, improvisation, and technique at major institutions for dance and theater throughout Canada, Europe, and the United States.
Photography by Philip Habib