Tuesday, May 19, 2009

good feeling: healing movement therapy

Yousuff Koumbassa was here teaching a West African dance class for 2 days. The guy is an amazing amazing dancer, the best I have ever seen. The next best dancer imo is Chrysogone Diangouaya, Congolese dancer, but he is a little younger and a little less mature than Yousuff. Yousuff has presence, very deep presence. His class is completely about technique and completely free of any ego. Yousuff is totally present yet he is completely absent from the picture, and the Art is invited and comes in. So that frees us dancers to just Be too, and to experiment and experience the Dance.

The directions we got from Yousuff were: take your time; and feel, have a good feeling, enjoy the movement. "Take your time" does not mean "slow it down". African dance is really fast. How he explained it is: don't push, don't force yourself, let the movement happen. And enjoy it. Have a good feeling.

Dancing with this attitude is extremely healing. I was not tired or sore anymore. Everything just flows. I danced for hours, stayed up late, and still was full of energy. (Little nap in the afternoon and some good food also helps :)

More importantly, I was free to be, and to feel, and to experience myself. Yousuff created space for us. Because he wasn't in the picture but only Art, there was a lot of space for us to engage with the Art. SOmehow I got more connected with my body and with myself, and a lot of things became clearer.

Also, my body was "lubricated" and healed quite well, some neck issues and shoulder issues and pelvic issues got better because I was warmed up and stretched out. I also massaged it myself and got it even better.

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