“What can I say about Dance on Land? Well firstly I can say that it is just that, dance on land. I did not necessarily know what to expect before I arrived to this sacred little corner of the Earth, but I did know that whatever this experience was going to be, it was something I needed. I was in a very transitional place in my life. I had finally finished my bachelor’s degree, had decided to divorce my husband, and was taking off to travel around the world for seven months. I was experiencing chaos to say the least, and it was essential for me to ground myself to California in some way before leaving.
Some things cannot be entirely described, intellectualized, or categorized. Some things must be experienced. The theme of last year’s workshop was partnering. While I struggled to partner with the painful rocks in the river, or to engage in a conversation with the other person holding onto the stick, I recognized my need to somehow place the work that we were doing into a useful label. This wasn’t performance. It wasn’t technique in terms of our conservatory definition. This wasn’t therapy. What was this? I hesitate to say this, because I am trying to make the point that it doesn’t really need to be labeled, but reduced to the simplest term, I would say it is research.
There is something so generative, so delightful, so textured about giving myself the space to get into work that does not have an end result. Taking the time to separate some of the ego from the kinesthesia or experimenting with how they merge, these are just some of the ways we can explore our interiority and our relationship with others. And even though it is not about a result, I am certainly a better artist, dancer, writer, thinker, movement researcher, community member, relater to the elements, and friend because of this one experience. Dana, Shinichi, and Charles are very special people and cultivate a space that attracts other very special people. I am honored and brimming with gratitude for the experience I had last summer dancing on the land.”
Robyn Anne Taylor, 2013 participant