Teaching Philosophy

I prefer not to think of myself as a teacher. I am a facilitator, a guide, a space-holder, a specialist, and a lead investigator, but I don’t believe I teach anything. I invite people into spaces, into their bodies and into their awareness, I share ideas and instigate possibilities, I ask questions and introduce obstacles, I offer a mirror and I help to focus a lens, and the experience becomes the teacher. Learning is a very personal process, unique in timing and trajectory for each individual, continual over the course of our lives, and amplified within a sense of community. My work is in creating and holding this space, to offer students support, guidance, and challenges as they deepen inward and expand outward, and encourage them as they explore, fail, persist, and grow.

Practically speaking, my pedagogy, creative process, and embodied research are all grounded in Somatic practice, process, and theory, filtered through the lens of the Laban/Bartenieff Movement System. I have a particular interest in the nature of relationships and communication, specifically the dialogue between awareness, intention, action, and perception. I am fascinated by how this dynamic shapes the way we navigate self and other and creates concepts of understanding.

As an educator, this focus manifests in a student-centered rather than a discipline-centered approach. When teaching a specific movement/dance discipline or technique such as Contemporary Modern,  Jazz, or the Laban/Bartenieff Movement System, I invite students to explore and investigate the core ideas and/or values of the particular form, allowing the movement to be discovered, unearthed, and honed as a part of themselves that already exists in some way. When teaching more open-ended subject matter such as Somatics, Improvisation, Creative Process, or Movement Integration, the process is much the same – facilitating individuals in exploring, mapping, and learning the language of their own body and experiences – offering them the possibility of discovering understanding through themselves rather than reaching for it as something outside of themselves to achieve. The result is an active and conscious practice of decolonizing the body while simultaneously developing personal agency, perspective, and voice.