We started the session off in the traditional way - Aleks lead us through a Medimotion (movement meditation)
We read aloud some literature as a company on Qualia, Resonance and the Sub and Cobody. Qualia describes the knowing/live energy that holds memory beyond our lifetime. Resonance describes our ability to connect with that energy and memory in Butoh through Medimotion. When we do this we enter the Subbody which describes the exploring of our subconscious body, the dream body – half in, half present with ourselves in the outside world. The Cobody describes qualia connecting each of us universally, how we move as a collective and communicate with the knowing that we all carry the same qualia.
Aleks guided us through the ash walk, the image of becoming a cigarette burning with only our feet left as matter. How would we move as ash? The movement evolved into puppeteering; connecting different body parts by imaginary string. Perhaps our eyelids maneovre our knees. Our nose lifting our pelvis. We were encouraged to make these connections with others, our bodies becoming more interconnected. The movement evolved to the point where we all moved like one organism, one spine. It was great practice for
In the second half of the rehearsal, Holly led the group through some character-building exercises inspired by Porter Grubbs’ Demon Body Practice. The group were encouraged as individuals to draw upon the traits, qualia, themes that occurred within their adolescence and to highlight three that stood out the most. Everyone chose their first trait and were guided through the creation/embodiment of their qualia as a form of research. Everyone wrote down what they had found and some people shared with the group what had come up for them. There were some interesting shapes/characters that were drawn.
We repeated the exercise but with the second qualia. The idea is that when we dance our Butoh Fus each person will be able to use qualias extracted from their own reality/history within performing. The more we become aware of these, the more agency we have to use them within the dance. Next week we will carry on with the Subbody Demon Body Practice and will begin to move our findings into the Cobody phase.