We have all been there: during repertoire class or in a dance audition, there are many movement sequences to follow. So, How can you quickly `catch` the movement?
The importance of fast learning movements is, the commonly choreographers are seeking to work with dancers, who can remember the whole combination from watching it once only.
Why Do You Need This?
Choreographers, believes that improvisation is a way to enrich the dance vocabulary of the work. They often improvise in the studio, during the rehearsal and they expect the dancers to follow their movement.
Choreographers, often occupied with many aspects of the production and they appreciate more dancers that are involve in the creation process. They prefer to work with dancers that are creative and does not wait for the instructions from the choreographers but can learn the movement fast from watching.
So how can we quickly learn the movement?
Step 1 - Look For Patterns
While you watch someone else do the choreography, watch for patterns such as; direction in space, number of repetitions, and have it in your head before you start trying it yourself.
Step 2 - Pay Attention To Details
Watch his/her videos on Youtube or Vimeo and learn the choreographer`s habits. Usually each choreographer, has his way to move; some start the movement from a body part such tilting the head, demi plie and wondering in the space, some start the movement in the pelvic.
Step 3 - Communicate
Initiate a conversation with the choreographer, ask about his inspirations, images, vocabulary and learn about the intentation of the movement.
Step 4 - Divide the Choreography into chunks.
Most dance pieces have distinct sections or tell distinct parts of the same story. Divide your dance into these sections and work on one section at a time. It’s easier to remember three short sections than one long dance. Learn one section until you know it well, then move on to the next.
You don't necessarily have to learn the sections in order. If there's one section that seems pretty easy and something you can learn quickly, do that one first. Just make sure you eventually put all of the sections together in sequential order.
Step 5 - Get It Quickly By Starting Slowly
Move through your choreography slowly. It’s tempting, when you’re learning a new dance, to want to jump right in at full speed. Instead, move through each step of the choreography more slowly than you’ll perform it. It helps you to really learn it and commit each step to memory
Step 6 - Develop Ques
Develop internal cues. It can be easy to match certain points of the choreography with where your feet land in rehearsal, or how you’re aligned with something in your home or studio. But it’s likely that you won’t be performing in those areas. Instead, develop cues that relate to your body as you learn the choreography.
For example, say that you have a very heavy step to the right, just before you have to complete a difficult spin. Use that heavy step to remind yourself that the difficult spin comes next.
Step 7 - Target The Difficulties
Name difficult movements. If there are movements in your choreography that don’t have formal names, make up your own. Something like “jump-jump-spin-turn” might not make sense to everyone, but it can help you remember that series of movements.
Step 8 - Take Ownership
Absorb the idea that you are a dancer.
Take responsibility on the movement, as you are holding a treasure in you hands. Restore the information and memorize it on your way to work, before you go to sleep or even when you meet with friends.
It may take a while, but with these steps, you will master the quick learning technique of choreography.