On Movement



Movement is on the brain.  Here's why:


  • In a post-show discussion at Dance Union, with the topic of the evening titled "On Movement", someone asked the panel of choreographers (myself included) why we chose dance as a medium to express these particular ideas.  I'm not exactly sure how I answered the question, but looking back on it I can think of 2 potential responses:


1. Duh, dance IS my medium.  It's what I went to college for.  If I wanted to express my ideas through painting I would have gone to college for that.


2.Starting a dance, for me, isn't always about the idea.  I don't usually start out thinking to myself: "I really want to make a dance about… [insert idea here]."  I often start with the movement itself, and let the idea emerge from within that movement.  The thing that is equally frustrating and beautiful about dance is that if we could express all of these ideas in words, we probably would.  But it's those complex, deep-seeded, unspeakable ideas that emerge out of the language of our bodies that make dance so important.  *I hope this is what I said in the talk back…*


  • Probably everyone is aware of this, but it is really, really cold in Chicago.  It's also really, really, difficult to get a parking space right now.  Last night when I got home around 10:15pm I knew it would be challenging at best to get a spot, so I resorted to a parking at a meter about 3 blocks away.  I had tons of stuff to carry, and when I got in front of my house there was a nice, big, shoveled parking space (sans lawn furniture).  I sprinted, to the best of my ability, with my tons of stuff in -8 degree weather back to the car and snagged that parking space like my life depended on it.  When I got inside I couldn't stop wheezing and coughing.  It was really strange to me since I don't have asthma, and am in fairly decent health (granted I'm not ready to run a marathon, but should be able to handle three blocks with stuff…)




Our bodies are meant to move.  When I think about all the people out there who sit at a desk, then sit on a couch, then sit on a lawn mower, then sit on a couch some more, I wonder if they even know what it feels like to move to their full range of motion.  I'm under a lot of stress right now, and combined with the fact that I haven't moved in a couple of weeks my body was apparently retaliating and saying to me: "Hey! You! Move!". 




There is something so fundamental about moving… It heals the body and the soul.  It speaks to ideas that cannot be expressed in words.  So go do it, and recruit others to do it with you. 


photo: The Fat Lady Sings, an Opera in Three Acts.

Choreography: Lauren Warnecke | Dancers: Synapse Arts | Photo: Eddie Eng


Author: Lauren Warnecke

Lauren Warnecke is a reporter for NPR affiliate station WGLT and freelance arts and culture critic, primarily reviewing dance for the Chicago Tribune. Lauren enjoys cooking, cycling and attempting to grow things in her backyard. She lives in central Illinois.