With the presentation of FRAMED by Danielle Agami on Thursday, March 14, we thought we would revisit the idea of Gaga. The following comes from a blog post written by Linda Smith during the last time we worked with Danielle Agami when she originally choreographed her work Theatre in 2016. PS — read to the bottom for a special discount!
As a repertory company, Repertory Dance Theatre houses the work of over 150 different choreographers. Each requires a dancer to learn a different movement vocabulary. Today, RDT’s expanding lexicon now includes the Gaga movement language developed by Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin, Artistic Director of the Batsheva Dance Company based in Tel Aviv.
“Gaga is a new way of gaining knowledge and self-awareness through your body. Gaga provides a framework for discovering and strengthening your body and adding flexibility, stamina, and agility while lightening the senses and imagination. Gaga raises awareness of physical weaknesses, awakens numb areas, exposes physical fixations, and offers ways for their elimination. The work improves instinctive movement and connects conscious and unconscious movement, and it allows for an experience of freedom and pleasure in a simple way, in a pleasant space, in comfortable clothes, accompanied by music, each person with himself and others. We become more aware of our form. We connect to the sense of the endlessness of possibilities. We explore multi-dimensional movement; we enjoy the burning sensation in our muscles, we are ready to snap, we are aware of our explosive power and sometimes we use it. We change our movement habits by finding new ones. We go beyond our familiar limits. We can be calm and alert at once.” –Ohad Naharin
Danielle Agami was born in Israel in 1984 and was a member of the Batsheva Dance Company from 2002-2010. She functioned as the company’s rehearsal director and is now one of only fifty Gaga teachers worldwide. In 2011, Agami relocated to New York City, then founded Ate9 Dance and chose Los Angeles as the company’s home. Agami describes Gaga as a movement language rather than a technique. She says, “Gaga trains us to be fully effective and efficient in our body movements as we communicate.” The Gaga experience connects our senses to a world of endless possibilities.
Anyone can take a Gaga class. Experienced dancers might take a class alongside someone who has never danced before. However, there is a protocol in class and a list of requirements that one is expected to follow.
Repertory Dance Theatre dancers have responded to the Gaga classes with enthusiasm. And Gaga has affected the way they rehearse and perform. Read more about their experience here.
As one of the masters of the Gaga movement language, Danielle Agami is someone you want to see in person. Don’t miss her solo performance of FRAMED – this Thursday at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center.