Welcome to the Dance Exchange 500 Miles 500 Stories collection. Below you'll see the collection of stories that Dance Exchange has gathered along our 500-Mile walk from DC to West Virginia. Some of these stories have come to us in the form of postcards from the trail from random folks we meet along the way; some stories are arriving in our email from friends, family, colleagues, and partners who are sharing tales from a distance; stories are being collected at the Moving Field Guide and 500 Miles/500 Stories workshops; and we are posting photos, videos, audio, and written content from our own experiences out on the trail while we walk. Each week we'll have a "featured story." You can sort through our collection by genre, date, and more!

Featured Story
By Shula Strassfeld, Washington, DC

If you saw “How To Lose A Mountain”, do you think you saw this solo? Well, you did. But what you saw was this material six months later with new meaning and context. This process is very typical of how we make dances at Dance Exchange.

The movement assignment I worked with to create this phrase was about making space inside the body. It began with the question, How much can one body hold? As the piece developed, my character became one who both confronts Sarah’s new worldview and tries at the same time to accommodate that view, to make room for it in her own world. The idea of “making room” then had a particular context. Instead of a stand alone solo moment, the movement became part of a larger group section. By using very specific, personal movement, my character was clearly defined as unique in that early moment in the piece. Elements of the solo return in different contexts throughout the piece, reminding me of who I am and making it clear how I change.

It is lovely to watch this movement now and to be reminded of what it was at the source. The whole process is rather like the subject of the piece itself– what we hold on to, what we lose, how things change over time.


Posted on: May 22nd, 2013