When reflecting on the Notes, Steps, Timelines, and Collaborations course by the RPS I remember what a fantastic experience it was.
As a musician I rarely come in to contact with professional dancers/choreographers so it was hugely exciting to meet such a range of new people from varied backgrounds within the dance art form.
I was really surprised to discover that the choreographers on the course could talk about music in a much more insightful way than I can as a composer. This came to light during a session with Zoe Martlew where a composer and choreographer both took turns to comment on a piece on music, and talk about how they might use it for dance. The dancers could so easily get to the essence of the music and interpret it really effectively where I found myself quickly descending into analysis of the music and using technical terms that mean nothing when it comes to collaboration. This experience has taught me that I need to learn how to talk about music to non-musicians as communicating with a collaborator on the same level is so important. The choreographers showed me that dance can draw the audience’s attention to parts of the music that otherwise might have gone unnoticed.
There were such a huge range of guest speakers who work with composers or choreographers in such a variety of ways that it became obvious that it doesn’t really matter how you collaborate with someone, it is more important to jump in at the deep and just make it happen.
Notes, Steps, Timelines, Collaborations, an RPS Drummond Fund project, took place over 3 weekends in October 2014 bringing together composers and choreographers to share and exchange ideas