Moving engrams

On Tuesday 2nd April 2019, we invited Professor Sarah Whatley and Lily Hayward-Smith from Coventry University’s Centre for Dance Research (C-DaRE) to work with the PaRG members and other colleagues across the university to think about how we can create REF-able outputs from our practice. Following on from a really useful session led by Sarah, we moved into the dance studios for an improv jam

My body remembers the last time we moved together in the space. I have created snapshots of images we created with our bodies, from how it felt to move together. I remember the temperature of the floor, the softness of my skin on yours, the playful way we skimmed across the room like stones on the shore. I remember that feeling in all the cells of my body when we found the same rhythm of a bounce and kept tuning into one another as we fell through the space.

Reflective logbook before jamming- Jenna Hubbard
Improv jam session – Tuesday 2nd April 2019. With Sarah Whatley and Lily Hayward-Smith

Lily and I have worked together for years, exploring through improvisation how memories layer and relate to one another. Our practice includes moving, speaking, writing and sound manipulation to use shared memories as a source of inspiration. Through practice together over a number of years, we have created a process that we both know and understand, and each new improvisation together creates another new layer of meaning, significance and memory. Whilst this improv jam was not specifically about accessing memories of one another, Lily’s presence in the space immediately drew me back into a tangled web of overlapping, interlocking and at times interchangeable memories.

We are rolling together… here and now, in this space in Bournemouth. And yet my body remembers us rolling in the ICE studio in Coventry as graduate dance artists on a Wednesday night… as second year students in ET221 in Cecilia’s class… in performance in a crypt in Coventry cathedral… in a church hall in Kenilworth with your family… in a hill fort in Beer in December with snow falling… rolling you up in paper and then sculpting it around you as a living sculpture. This movement is timeless and resides in my skin, bones and muscles

Reflective logbook after jamming – Jenna Hubbard

I am curious now about how movement engrams build in the body, and reside inside us, recalling our past selves into a present sensation. I cannot find the language or method of annotating the sophisticated way my body recalls, acknowledges and produces movement from our shared past into the present with such immediacy and honesty.

There is a ghost in the room as we dance together

Reflective logbook after jamming – Jenna Hubbard

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