curiously using Alchemy
to compose a choreography
which generates its own space/

a game for a self-contained choreography:

A 〈self-contained choreography〉 is a series of situations between bodies that creates its own space so it does not require a predefined space. The space it creates is utopian because it is outside of our world. How will our bodies play there?

Our project combines three approaches:

The game is a framework to collective creation -- without fixed roles and goals, but with strict division of labor. We want to use our curiosity and sensibility to relations and encounters between bodies in the process of composing a choreography.

When we perform, we will not only reproduce a choreography, but more interestingly:
reproduce a space defined by our own bodies.



Wash each other's feet. Warm up however you like. You may as well propose exercises to the whole group.


Position and sculpt every body except your own inside the space. After ten minutes of stillness, the sculptures dissolve and share their experience: proximity, distance, smell, touch, sound, gesture, noise, anticipation, tension, boredom etc. Then, the next participant may sculpt the rest of the group. We want to research every body's needs and limits in relation to the other bodies, and to practise everyone's ability to make choreographic decisions.


Add or remove cards that will be available for the subsequent game.

the game:

Acrobat - Take, translate and give impulses. Be aware that you may have to repeat your movement.

Alchemist - You have a big book. Record the whole situation using words, images and imaginary signs. You are also responsible for giving a laws or a situation a meaningful sign, and for translating it back into the original situation or law. Your special ability is to freeze the whole space (if you need time to write down signs).

Musician - You make music.

Queen of the Birds - You are allowed to hover over the situation and even to leave the space. But you must be a bird (or toad) and you must not interfere with anyone. You are the only one allowed to talk to the audience. Your special ability is to summon the elements water, wind, earth and fire.

Join one of these collective bodies.

During the game, you may play cards. Do the gesture connected with the card you want to play, and wait until you have everybody's attention.


If you experienced an interesting situation, you can use these cards to repeat and save it. If you feel the current situation is drab, you can use the load card to playback a saved situation. This way, you can also combine separate situations to a series, i.e. choreography:

I understand.
I don't understand.


These are just examples of where we could go: a shadow theatre, a parking structure, a forest, a lake, a dance studio, a garden, ...

We also want to explore unusual times and conditions: how do we play before sunrise? In the rain? For more than 5 hours? For less than ten minutes? In a very small or very big space?

As soon as we feel like we got a nice composition, we will open up these spaces to audiences, and perform. We may want to create objects or costumes. depends on us.


the Secret garden.

Looking forward to seeing you!

This workshop is part of a research on empty (or disconnected) spaces and their emancipative power:

Encounters in an Empty Space