Blogs

31 July 2018
Author: The Place and Laura Gibson

Q&A with Laura Gibson: Adult Dance Classes

We spoke to Laura Gibson, teaching on our autumn term of adult dance classes.


Can you tell us a little bit about your background in dance?

I started dancing at the age of three in Ballet, Modern and Jazz dance, with ballet being my main focus until I was introduced to contemporary dance when I started my professional training. Working in release, Cunningham, Limon and Ballet and creating works with choreographers Andrea Buckley and Lisa Cullen changed my focus completely. The variety, challenge and sense of grounding that I discovered through contemporary technique and dancing with these choreographers was a huge change to my previous way of moving. It made me challenge my body in ways I hadn’t previously. 

What can we expect from your class?

At the core of my classes is a focus on strong technique, so expect to develop a technical knowledge, an understanding of placement,  alignment of the spine, balance and strength. We will work through set exercises which warm-up the body and build energy in preparation for more expansive material. As the class progresses we’ll push those technical skills by layering increasingly challenging and dynamic travelling movement and phrases. Use of momentum, weight, fluidity, shifting through the space, change of directions, power, musicality and complex patterning are also a focus of my class. It is important to me as a teacher to allow dancer’s to develop their individual technique and performance in a friendly and encouraging environment.

What do you like most about teaching?

Meeting and working with a whole range of dancers, all with their own individuality and personality. Helping to develop their physical and technical range and awareness. Seeing their confidence grow as an individual but also as part of a group and the enjoyment, connection, energy and trust they form as a whole - and learning myself from this.

Who was your most influential teacher?

Lisa Spackman has probably had the most impact as a teacher/mentor/director, teaching me to push and challenge myself as a dancer and creative collaborator and encouraging me as a teacher / choreographer.

What has been your biggest challenge as a dancer?

Looking after my body, maintaining stamina and keeping myself physically and mentally strong to sustain a busy schedule. This might include shifting from teaching, to making work, to performing, and trying to be versatile and responsive to these differing environments and situations.

Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?

Josephine Baker, LouisTheroux, Margaret Atwood,Yann Tiersen... and the cast of Friends!


Laura teaches a Contemporary Level 1 dance class on our adult dance classes programme. We run regular classes for all ages and abilities plus special courses and workshops - get dancing with us.

 

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