Methodology of Contemporary Dance 1

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Code Completion Credits Range Language Instruction Semester
107MES1 Z 4 1+1/T Czech winter

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Name of lecturer(s)


Learning outcomes of the course unit

The study aim is the development of methodic thought and comprehensive reasoning skills about movement with a sensitivity to detail and a consideration of anatomical interdependencies. The course leads to the support of and consolidation of teaching skills, creativity, movement experimentation and analysis, the forming of individual teaching style and an awareness of the role of the instructor. Part of the course is independent teaching practice and subsequent analysis and evaluation through discussion.

Mode of study

Theory instruction aims towards the systematic broadening of professional skills in teach methods and instruction steps (ex: sample analysis forms of various manners of instruction recorded on DVD, analysis of completed workshops, individual lessons) and practical exercises. The course includes independent student teaching practice in the Pegagogy Pro-seminar of the first year of dance teaching at HAMU which are consulted upon.

Prerequisites and co-requisites

The requirement is the completion of Modern Dance Methods 5, primarily, an openness to learning new skills, development of movement quality and the principles of modern dance, improvisation skills, creativity, interest in theory, effort to learn about current events in modern dance in teaching and choreography in the Czech Republic and abroad. Recommended: participation in dance - education classes and workshops arranged by other professional institutions, a monitoring and comparison of teaching methods of various instructors, continuous gathering of new information through the internet. Independent study is emphasized through e-learning, study materials and recommeded professional writings.

Course contents

The movement vocabulary of modern dance has not been codified and there is no set system of exercises. The methodology is based, primarily on a detailed analysis of movement principles and various methods which emphasize natural movement expression and effective function of the body in movement. This comes from practical research in the use of physical regularities and kinesology which generally leads to the development of recognition and awareness of the movement potential of the human body. In instruction, the students acquire, not only, theory information but all method and teaching knowledge. Skills are checked and consolidated, as well, through practical exercises in which the students learn to investigate and create a particular teaching style.

The syllabus for the Winter semester includes these topics:

  1. Historical context of the rise of contemporary dance, its relationship to modern and post-modern dance. The post-modern period as a change in paradigm.
  2. Aim and structure, main instruction basics of a lesson of contemporary dance technique (intention and instruction process), music accompaniment
  3. Dynamic alignment arising from the function of the relationships among individual parts of the body in a static position and in movement.
  4. Basic prinicples of BMC

Throughout there is a discussion based on observing the sixth, seventh and eighth study years, some of which apply instruction performances, or subsequently in one's teaching practice.

Recommended or required reading

Feldenkrais, Moshé: Awarness through movement (Pohybem k sebeuvědomění). Praha, 1996

Lewis, Daniel: The Illustrated Dance Technique of José Limón. New York, 1984

Schurr, Gertrude; Yoccom, Rachael D.: Modern Dance. Techniques and Teaching. New York: The Ronald Press Company, 1949

Horosko, Marianne: Martha Graham. The Evolution of her Dance Theory and Training. Pennington, 1991

Stewart, Virginia: Modern Dance. New York, 1991

Stodelle, Ernestine: The Dance technique of Doris Humphrey. Princeton, 1978

Warren, Larry: Lester Horton, Modern Dance Pioneer. New York, 1991

Cohan Robert, The Dance Workshop. London, 1986

Cohen, Bonnie Bainbridge: Sensing, Feeling, and Action. Northampton, 1993.

Novack, Cynthia Jean: Sharing the Dance. Madison, 1990.

Assessment methods and criteria

Credit is awarded based on:

a) 80% class participation

b) Written analysis of two workshops in modern or contemporary dance, which the student completed in the Winter semester.

c) Written review of two performances of contemporary dance which the student attended in the Summer semester

d) Instructing a practice in a class for „Methods of Contemporary Dance“

e) Minimum 4 hour teaching practice at a dance conservatory and two hours listening.


No notes

Schedule for winter semester 2020/2021:

The schedule has not yet been prepared

Schedule for summer semester 2020/2021:

The schedule has not yet been prepared

The subject is a part of the following study plans