Is it wise to start learning contemporary dance with the Skinner Release technique?

by Natalie
(Pittsburgh, PA )

Hello,

I have recently become so passionate about dance, especially modern/contemporary dance and I just read your entire website (I’m so grateful for this). I am 24 and I would like to take dance seriously. I have been taking yoga for almost a year now and I did take ballet and gymnastics when I was younger but then stopped due to moving. I just read your techniques page and wondered where I can take Skinner Release Technique classes? I feel like that will really help me to let go. Also is that a good place to start technique wise? Because I don't really have much of a technique yet.

Hope to hear from you soon,

Natalie

Comments for Is it wise to start learning contemporary dance with the Skinner Release technique?

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Nov 27, 2013
Maria's reply
by: Maria

Dear Natalie,

Soft techniques, like the Skinner Release, are a very good starting point to learn contemporary dance. However, the effect and knowledge you acquire by practicing any dance technique depends a lot on your own aptitudes, predispositions and interpretation of the experience that the technique offers.

Some contemporary dancers love soft techniques, but feel the need to complement their training with a hard technique like ballet or a modern technique. That happens because while soft techniques teach relaxation and effortless quality of movement, hard techniques may teach other stance options, force and many other movement qualities and shapes that the dancer may like or find useful.

For example, I personally do a combination of yoga, feldenkrais, ballet and flamenco... ; ) . Sounds weird, but that's how many contemporary dancers train nowadays. It is true also, that some dancers stick to one technique only and find all their needs fulfilled with that.

A way to know if a technique is right for you is the feeling that the practice produces in your self, before, during and after class. You should feel enthusiastic and movement should feel comfortable and enjoyable.

It is important to pay sincere attention to your learning process to avoid confusing laziness, tiredness or misinterpretations with an idea that the technique is not good for you. On the other hand, if after trying for months with a particular practice, you get hurt, have some stiffness with pain or negative emotions, you should move on to another technique or teacher.

For taking Skinner release technique classes, you better look at the schedules of the Skinner Releasing Institute. You will find them at the following page:

SRT Worldwide classes

If the schedules do not fit your needs, you can also ask at your local dance schools and try anything that is close to it (release classes are usually called ‘contemporary dance’ classes). However, the best thing to do is to watch a class before you decide if you want that technique and teacher, or not (the quality of the practice depends a lot on the teacher).

Here’s the link to our worldwide directory of dance schools, fir the case that you need to make some research:

Directory of contemporary dance schools

I wish you a great dancing experience.

Warm regards,

Maria

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