A Meditative Dance Landscape
EMPTY BODY is a contemporary choreographic practice initiated by Mehdi FARAJPOUR, where Dance, Theatre, Performance & Poetry come together. The method is profoundly inspired by Persian poetry and is formed by Mehdi Farajpour (choreographer & performance artist). The main challenge for practicers of this method is how to reach the state of Emptiness in the mind as well as in the body. The same goal as for Hindus: SAMADHI (समाधि), or for Dervishes: FANA (فقر و فنا) & for Buddhists: Nirvana (निर्वाण).
Empty Body is based on several principles and concepts as below:
1) The general idea: In theater, actors are supposed to carry a new character on their body called the Role. In that case, the importance of this second character is much bolder than the actor’s own one. In dance, indeed, dancers do not need to represent any secondary character. Furthermore, they even do not need to carry on their own character.
2) Meditation in motion: This concept is mainly focused on the power of imagination and the meditation. In this case, body is considered as an object or a tool to be manipulated by a subject called Mind. The body is something to be carried, something to be danced with.
3) I & ego: Empty Body considers the mind as a foundation and the body as a construction. It passes through Meditation: a journey from the I (ego) to the I (without ego).
4) Persian sufism: As mentioned earlier, EMPTY BODY is inspired by Persian sufism and the belief on Transmogrification. Sufi believes in becoming a part of nature and perceiving the life as a tree, as a stone, as the water but not imitating it. And after having experienced a wider perception, coming back to humanity but a human without EGO. In other words, becoming nobody (Emptiness). In this method, physical exercises start from this point on.
What exactly is the EMPTY BODY?
Empty body is the most proper form of body for dancers as well as for performers. An empty body is the purest form of being which does not carry any character nor any characteristics. So, an Empty body can easily represent any elements in the world. It can remain stood up as a tree for years, or stay motionless as a stone for ages, it can breath as the air and wave as the wind. To avoid any fake and naive image from the method, this all needs a deep understanding from spirituality, poetry, Meditation and Sufism. The workshop Meditative dance is trying to give a basic taste of all this to its audience.
Conclusion: Through the course participants would learn basic lessons of creating choreographies inspired by poetry, nature, imagination as well as everyday life. On the way of looking for an new dance style, the method gives a try to different dance forms, bodily expressions, cyclic yoga, body/mind research styles and of course the Poetry.
– External power and the way it moves our body.
– Inner power and the way it moves our body.
– Meditation in motion.
– Rhythm & tempo of silence.
– Translating poetry into movement.
– Unbalanced stability.
– Gravity transfer.
– Alienation (Body is an object to live with).
– Living in the absolute surrealism.
– Animating a picture.
– Moving slowly or slow-motion?
– Falling or dropping?
– Creative choreographical games.
– Drawing the space.
– Writing with body.
– Random choreography.
The method has been presented in the following cities and countries: Vienna (IMPULSTANZ festival), Cologne (TANZFAKTUR), Greece (DANCE DAYS CHANIA), Brazil (Londrina Dance Festival), Poland (Opole, Tczew, Krakow), South Korea (H.P.A.C), Belarus (Minsk), Finland (Tampere, Helsinki), Turkey (Istanbul, Trabzon), Iran (Tehran), France (Paris, Besançon), Spain (Barcelona, Girona, Valencia), Germany (TANZPLAN), UK (Sheffield).