For the Corn and Flowers, Dance and Percussion

For the Corn and Flowers
Sunday, May 16, 2010 6:00pm - 8:00pm
The Anabolic Monument, California State Park
Tatsuya Nakatani Percussion
Oguri Dance
Roxanne Steinberg Dance
Admission free
The Anabolic Monument is an artwork by Lauren Bon, tended to by the Metabolic Studio in collaboration with the State Park of California in Los Angeles. It is made of the remains of Notacornfield, the Metabolic Sculpture, 2005-2006, that transformed the 32-acre brownfield at the historic center of dowtown Los Angeles into a green field for one agricultural cycle. It is currently in the fifth year of being tended to by the Metabolic Studio. The corn in the Anabolic is being grown for the final season of the Metabolic Studio's stewardship of the Anabolic Monument.
Tatsuya Nakatani (percussion) is originally from Osaka, Japan. He has performed in 80 cities in 7 countries and collaborated with 163 artists worldwide. In the past 10 years he has released nearly 50 recordings on CD.He has created his own instrumentation, effectively inventing many instruments and extended techniques. He utilizes drumset, bowed gongs, cymbals, singing bowls, metal objects, bells, and various sticks and bows to create an intense, organic music that defies category or genre. His music is based in improvised/ experimental music, jazz, free jazz, rock, and noise, yet retains the sense of space and beauty found in traditional Japanese folk music.
Roxanne Steinberg’s choreography and dance has been seen worldwide with composers and musicians Yas Kaz, Paul Chavez, Kenta Nagai, Tatsuya Nakatani, Leon Mobley, Myra Melford & Alex Cline and dancers Min Tanaka and Amagatsu of Sankai Juku. A founder of Body Weather Laboratory in L.A. (1987), she has performed with Oguri since 1990 and was presented in Flower of the Season, a performance series she now co-directs. She has choreographed for Body Vox in Portland, and artist Lauren Bon’s Notacornfield, the Metabolic Scultpure, 2005-2006, that transformed the 32-acre brownfield at the historic center of dowtown LA into a green field for one agricutlural cycle. Working at the Metabolic Studio and on Strawberry Flag in Los Angeles, dance is her language to coordinate space and community. Grants: Annenberg Foundation, Department of Cultural Affairs Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Arts Commission, Durfee Foundation, artist-in-residence Electric Lodge, Venice.
Oguri, an internationally acclaimed dancer/choreographer and a resident of Southern California since 1990, conducts Body Weather Laboratory a forum for investigating the body and dance (founded by Min Tanaka in Japan, 1978). In Japan, he studied fine art with Genpei Akasegawa and dance with Tatsumi Hijikata before working extensively with Min Tanaka farming, performing and presenting solo work in Tokyo. Since moving to the USA, he has taught and performed worldwide. The 2005 documentary film Height of Sky by director Morleigh Steinberg follows his 4-year project, an exploration of the California deserts in search of a dance between the human body and the borderline. He is an artist-in-residence at the Electric Lodge in Venice, California. Oguri has received support from the California Arts Council, the New England Foundation for the Arts National Dance Project, the Rockefeller Foundation, the City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department, The Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Arts Partners Program, The Getty Center, the Irvine Fellowship in Dance, the 2005 Irvine Dance: Creation to Performance grant. He serves on the Chora Council of the Metabolic Studio. The Metabolic Studio is comprised of Chora and Farmlab.

December 5, 12, 11-1pm: Sheetal Gandhi
Sheetal is interested in movement that is gestural, expressive and musically complex. She draws on her inspirations including kathak dance, vocal percussion, popping and waving, modern dance, classic jazz, Michael Jackson, West African dance, Pilates, Yoga and Bharatanatyam mudras. This two-part course will use the complex, precise rhythms of the North Indian classical dance form Kathak, as a springboard into exploring the musician-dancer body. Choreographically, we will explore the possibilities within the drum and dance language, using our voices and dance to create highly specific movement sequences and soundscapes. All levels and techniques welcome. The class should warm you up, cool you down, and keep you groovin’ in between!

Sheetal Gandhi is interested in creating a space that brings the many sides of her personality together: dramatic, wry, Indian, American, dancer, percussionist, abstract, chameleon, precise, impulsive, singer and storyteller. She draws on her strengths and professional successes from the subway platform to the Broadway stage to create work that blurs cultural and disciplinary boundaries, promoting intercultural understanding through artistic excellence. In 1993, Sheetal’s passion for rhythm led her to Ghana, West Africa where she spent a year studying and performing the traditional music and dances of the region. Sheetal grew up folk dancing within her own culture and in 1995 moved to India for six months to further study the North Indian classical dance form Kathak. As a percussionist, she plays the calabash, or dried gourd, and the West African xylophone. Sheetal worked as a creator and performer in Cirque du Soleil’sDralion, and toured with the international cast from 1999-2001. Her New York credits include: leading role in the Broadway production of Bombay Dreams, Stephen Schwartz’s Children of Eden at the Paper Mill Playhouse, and the revival of Hair. Gandhi was Co-Artistic Director of the modern dance company California Contemporary Dancers in San Francisco from 2001-2004 and holds an MFA in Dance/Choreography from UCLA’s Dept. of World Arts and Cultures. Most recently she has been touring her multi-disciplinary one-woman show, Bahu-Beti-Biwi (Daughter-in-law, Daughter, Wife), with recent performances in Los Angeles at the REDCAT NOW Festival and in New York with the National Asian American Theater Festival. For more info. visit

November 7, 14, 21, 11AM - 1PM Neil Greenberg
Each class/workshop will draw from three possible arenas:
* Working with information from some of the somatic approaches I’ve studied, considering body systems in addition to, and in conjunction with, the prevalent skeletal/muscular model. Could be called a bodywork approach to movement training. Warming up will be one goal, here. Call this the “technique” focus.
* Directed improvisation, using some of the ideas from my recent “Really Queer Dance With Harps” as a springboard, and also working with ideas from my current project: I’ve been questioning the notion that speech metaphors—for example, “what is this dance saying?”—can accurately describe dance experiences. I’m instead interested in exploring the “isness” of the performance moment.
* Working with set material drawn from my choreography, learning and playing with “phrase-work.” Sort of a mini repertory focus. (This probably a lower priority for me at present.)
I still feel quite new to L.A., and hope to continue making work here. I see these workshops as an opportunity to continue to meet and get to know artists from the L.A. dance community, and to bring to the table some of the ideas with which I’ve been working.
Feel free to email me with any questions:

Neil Greenberg moved to L.A. from N.Y.C. in fall 2007 to join the dance faculty of UC Riverside. He has been making dances since 1979, and is known especially for his 1994 work,
Not-About-AIDS-Dance, which employs his signature use of projected supertitles as an alternative text to the onstage dance action, and a door into the “meanings” of viewing dance. His work also reflects the influence of innovative somatic approaches to movement, such as Klein Technique, which he’s studied extensively with Barbara Mahler and Susan Klein, and Body-Mind Centering, which he’s studied with RoseAnne Spradlin. His most recent work, Really Queer Dance With Harps, continues his investigation into the nature of meaning-making. RQDWH premiered at Dance Theater Workshop in NY in June 2008, and was presented at REDCAT in LA in April 2009. He has received fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, NEA NYFA & the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, two “Bessies,” a Time Out Audience Award, and grants from the National Dance Project, the Rockefeller Multi-Arts Production Fund and NYSCA. He has created two commissions for Mikhail Baryshnikov's White Oak Dance Project. A former dancer with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company (1979-1986), he has been on the dance faculty of Purchase College and Sarah Lawrence College, and served as dance curator at The Kitchen from 1995-1999. For more information:

October 31st, 11am-1pm Hana van der Kolk

This is Dancing...
is a contemporary dance technique class open to all levels of dance experience. Class begins with a slow warm up drawing from yoga, mindfulness meditation, the Alexander Technique, Body Mind Centering, and various dance traditions. With a focus on cultivating kinesthetic awareness and heightening mental presence we then move between guided improvisations and simple and repetative set material that draws from jazz, Hip Hop, modern dance, and West African movement vocabularies. Class might finish with a simple movement phrase set to music (think Cyndi Lauper, Janet Jackson, Animal Collective, Justin Timberlake, NIna Simone) and/or scores for practicing improvised choreography. From start to finish we will move, sweat, play, and dance together in a collective space of exploration and positivity. This is Dancing draws inspiration from the work of Deborah Hay, Simone Forti, d. Sabela Grimes, Germaine Acogny, Merce Cunningham, and many others.

Hana van der Kolk is a choreographer based in Los Angeles. Her projects combine elements of conceptual practice with the techniques of postmodern theater and choreography and take place in a wide range of sites, including the stage, studios and galleries, in writing, on film, and in outdoor, public spaces. She is highly influenced by choreographer Deborah Hay whose solos she has been learning and adapting since 2000. The adaptations as well as Hana's own work have been presented throughout the U.S. and Europe. Hana has collaborated with Carolina San Juan, Layard Thompson, Jesse Johnson, Robby Herbst, My Barbarian, Jesse Aron Green and many others. As a performer she has appeared in the work of Taisha Paggett, Rebecca Pappas, Cid Pearlman, Dan Froot/Dan Hurlin and others. Hana has taught dance and yoga in public parks, private back yards, studios, retreat centers, universities, and high schools throughout the country, and is a regular guest teacher at the School for New Dance Development, Amsterdam. In 2008 Hana founded Genesis Project, Los Angeles, a forum for dialogue about interdisciplinary, body-based artistic practice and a month-long, process-based artists’ residency. For more please visit <> and <> .

Oct. 17, 24: Kevin Williamson
Int./Adv. Contemporary Techniques & Creative Composition Class

We start class by getting down and dirty with our bad selves. Improvisational work based on spinal awareness, tailbone initiation, plane possibility, and release technique spiral us across the floor. Then we hit the center adagio to weave smoothly between Yoga/Alexander technique, and into moving inversions to fire up the core, lubricate the joints, and stretch major and minor muscles groups. By transferring from twisting asanas into released joint articulation we will strengthen our ideas of balance and falling. Shifting from our feet to our hands and all the surface area in between we will explore gravity as a tool in moving swifter and more efficiently while widening our perspective on our own movement potential. Then through complex, athletic phrase work we will create movement that is simultaneously functional in capacity and dynamic in expression. Each class ends with an improvisation that utilizes that day’s work to expand on our skill in creating without pre-conceived thought – the key to visceral, enlightening experiences in improvisation. We will then flashback this process to retain the spontaneous movement into muscle and mind memory heightening our knowledge on how to compose structured improvisation and dance. Contact Kevin for more info: 310.430.5384

Kevin Williamson, professional dancer and choreographer, began training and performing commercially at the age of ten. He went on to UCLA to complete a BA in World Arts and Cultures. Since he has performed for David Gordon, Julie Taymor, Angelin Preljocaj, Sebastian Prantl, Ryan Heffington, Stephan Koplowitz, Maria Gillespie, and Kate Hutter in New York City, Vienna, and Los Angeles. Kevin is a founding company member of LACDC, and member of Oni Dance, site-specific touring ensemble TaskForceProject, and performs for the LA Opera. He has been nominated for several Lester Horton Awards for performance excellence, and in 2007, the LA Times named him “a major artist” for his performance at the Ford Amphitheatre in Unearthing Sleeping Beasts. As a choreographer, Kevin has created works for the LA Contemporary Dance Co., Los Angeles Movement Arts, Fringe Festival Scotland, Highways Festival of Student work, Freud Theatre, and Miami's Winter Music Conference. In October of 2009 Highways presents the debut concert of his dance theatre company KDUB DANCE. Kevin is currently the director of dance at Chadwick School in Palos Verdes, and recently completed a Dance Educator’s Fellowship awarded to him by Bates Dance Festival.

September 26, October 3, 10
Saturdays, 11 - 1
Roxanne Steinberg
Introduction to Body Weather Laboratory
Body Weather Laboratory is a research forum open to anyone interested in investigating the body within different environments. Just like the weather, our bodies are constantly changing and our relationship to the environment is in a state of interactive flux. Through a thorough reexamination of the body and movement, the training supports work in various practices and disciplines by developing presence and deeper connectivity to the world around us. It consists of: M.B. - 
Rigorous mind/body, muscle/bone training, Rhythmical and dynamic, it develops coordination and endurance.

 Manipulations - 
A series of specific stretching and relaxation exercises concerned with breathing and alignment. The work is done in couples, exchanging passive and active roles.

 Laboratory Explorations - designed to sharpen focus and extend the scope of awareness through the body. The work encompasses sensitivity training, discovery of movement from images and working with partners to deepen investigation and develop understanding. Roxanne Steinberg discovered Body Weather Laboratory at Bennington College while training in dance and improvisation and went on to study in Paris, New York and Japan. She began teaching Body Weather in L.A. in 1988 and has worked and performed with Oguri since 1990. Roxanne’s choreography and dance has been presented worldwide with composers and musicians Yas Kaz, Paul Chavez, Kenta Nagai, Tatsuya Nakatani, Leon Mobley, Myra Melford & Alex Cline and dancers Min Tanaka and Amagatsu of Sankai Juku. She was presented in Flower of the Season, a performance series and mentorship program she now co-directs at the Electric Lodge in Venice. She received a Durfee Arts grant, 2006 for her piece at Dance Conversations at the Flea in New York where she has presented her work each year since. Her performance with Oguri in a major production, Caddy! Caddy! Caddy! William Faulkner Dance Project premiered at the REDCAT and will be performed at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, November 2009. Working at the Metabolic Studio in Los Angeles, dance is her language to coordinate space and community. She is an artist-in-residence at the Electric Lodge in Venice where she continues to teach Body Weather Laboratory.

DANCEbank fall/winter series
September 5, 12, 19: Cheng-Chieh Yu
Motion in Stillness; Stillness in Motion

This class will explore a Tai-Chi/BaGuaZhang influenced post-modern dance technique. The class will start with a series of Tai-Chi/BaGuaZhang derived movement exercises focusing at once on both centering, and opening up channels of energy. “When it moves, it divides; when it rests, it reunites.” Next we will work on weight shifting as the movement of complimentary opposites, Yin & Yang, exploring momentum from fall-and-response, to build phrasing. This process leads us to concentrate on developing choreographic efficiency in phrasing and rhythm.

Cheng-Chieh Yu is a choreographer of dance theater works that explore Asian Diaspora issues, which challenge notions of an Asian and Asian-American profile, crisscrossing issues such as gender ascription, social-political perspectives, cultural hybridity. Yu’s bold kinetics and provocative imagery are built from a dynamic corporeal postmodern dance technique, fused with the martial arts of Tai Chi Chuan and Ba Gua Zhang. Cheng-Chieh began her performance career touring with the acclai med Cloud Gate Dance Theater of Taiwan. After relocating to New York City from 1989 to 2001, Cheng-Chieh toured internationally performing in the companies of The Solomons Co. Dance, Jose Limon Dance Co., Bebe Miller Dance Co. and as a gue st artist for the Ralph Lemon Dance Project. Her choreography has been produced by numerous venues in NYC and Los Angeles as well as internationally in China, Singapore, Israel, and Taiwan. Choreographic commissions include from the Chinese Information and Cultural Center, Movement Research, Danspace at St. Mark’s Church in NYC, the Beijing Modern Dance Company in China and Sun-Shier Dance Theatre of Taiwan. She is currently an Associate Professor of Performance/Choreography at UCLA.