”“I am becoming more aware of the interplay between ourselves, the weather and the ever-changing sensory landscape of outdoor spaces.”
Dancer Holly Thomas speaks about her In-Body invitation, ‘Touch. Rain. String.’
We began In-Body in the summer heat of late June, and as the seasons change, so too do our varied invitations from 12 talented dance and movement artists. Holly’s invitation is created with autumnal, changeable weather in mind. We sat down with Holly to find out more about ‘Touch. Rain. String.’, and her work as a dancer who is also visually impaired.
What is In-Body for, and who can take part?
Holly: In-Body is simply a series of movement invitations. Lisa [Thomas] might have a more detailed answer to that than me! It is for anyone who would like to explore movement, sensing, and perhaps using everyday technologies, in response to an invitation created by dancers from The Soma Project.
What is the role of technology in In-Body, and how does it work?
H: For me it’s about using everyday technologies, such your mobile phone, in a new way – perhaps as an object or technology to interact with through the senses, or in relationship to yourself and your environment.
Do participants need any dance experience, or familiarity with technology?
H: Dance experience is not needed. It’s much more about rediscovering places, spaces and technologies that we might know well, through perhaps a shift of focus, attention or perception. I am a bit of a technophobe so certainly no expertise in technology is required!
As a visually-impaired person, what is In-Body like to experience?
H: I really enjoy the audio invitations, hearing the dancers’ voices and moving through the exploration in my own space, whilst having a sense that they are also moving through the invitation too. I enjoy being invited to engage with the senses – working with touch, listening, movement and spending time noticing something new in spaces and places that are very familiar to me. Like my living room, a doorway, or an outdoor space.
How does your invitation for In-Body fit into your work as a dance artist? Are there shared themes or ideas you have enjoyed exploring?
H: Certainly a practice of tuning in to the body, noticing where our body and our environment meet and points of contact. Also what we might discover through our sense of touch. I have recently begun working in the outdoors, and I am becoming more aware of the interplay between ourselves, the weather and the ever-changing sensory landscape of outdoor spaces.
What has been your favourite part of In-Body so far?
H: That is really tricky to answer as there have been so many lovely moments. I have though really enjoyed the incidental invitations that sit inside each dancer’s invitation. For example, being invited to place my ear against a tree trunk. I haven’t actually done this yet, but I am already imagining all sorts of sounds that may be hidden within the trunk of that tree.
Holly’s invitation is now available online via our Pay What You Decide platform: https://in-body.co.uk/membership-account/sign-up/
With thanks to Holly Thomas for her wonderful contributions to In-Body. You can find out more about her work by following Holly on Twitter: