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Synästhesie is a research project by Kai Strathmann funded by Ministry of Culture and Science of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia within the framework of the program “Auf geht's! Scholarship program.

Residency: Silk Kliscope, Linz, Austria

My research is about a performance concept, which I as a choreographer/dancer/music producer, with my unique understanding and perception of movement, sound & its symbiosis from the urban as well as contemporary world, combines my skills and passions and brings to the stage : Dance classes and contemporary dance performance. I have been teaching urban dance internationally for many years and love to see how movement, sound and the mediation of such affect different individuals and how every tiny bit of information finds its way from my words into other bodies. How does that compare to the audience? How can combining movement and language, describing motor drives and sharing my creative thoughts, my unique understanding of sound and movement, help in the context of a performance? Where are the interactions between pedagogical logic and choreographic analysis?Where are clear boundaries, where do they blur and where does this knowledge hold new solutions for my goals? For example, 'repetition' is a commonly used pedagogical method, as well as a choreographic tool. How is their effects and how do they differ? How can this understanding influence my artistic aesthetic decisions? Is there a possibility that this physical-somatic effect can arise without being directly involved in movement? For a lesson in the context of a performance, the first question that arises is what to convey? I convey 'ENERGY', the factors behind every movement and every sound. That's why I chose the 'EFFORT' category, from Laban Movement Analysis, as both an analytical and generative tool to set research goals and find material. 'Effort' describes the intention and drive behind a movement with a precise definition of the factors; weight, time, space and flow. I have already analyzed some interesting combinations of these factors, transferred them to sound and found different modes of action: Where the factors "weight" and "time" in the context of movement create a feeling of, for example; light and slow = can trigger slow motion, i.e. a concrete state, resulted in the sound context from "weight" and "time" rather one of the basic building blocks of music, the pulse or basic beat. In music, the melody stands for emotional content, which in my case corresponds to “weight” and “flow”. Such strict selection is essential and forms one of the bases of my research. How can this understanding of the two languages, syntaxes and semantics reduce the scope for the search for understanding? What interactions arise and how does the "Effort" category help me to find my individual energy through movement and sound and to convey/perform in the context of teaching and performance? With this basic structure and system, my unique experience between dance and music, urban and contemporary art, I can unfold the essence of my dance pedagogy, the passion and curiosity for experiencing my contemporary dance performance, under my own artistic-aesthetic umbrella.How can my performance contribute to an active exchange and still remain artistically demanding?

--Kai Strathmann

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