recovery

Dancing to Your Own Drum - The Bipolar Question of the Week

John McManamy Health Guide February 18, 2013
  • A couple of weeks ago, I posted a piece on what brain scan studies are finding out about the benefits of meditation. The piece was based on a TED talk I viewed. Your comments suggested that a follow-up piece was in order, this time related to rhythm and movement. As it turned out, I had just viewed a...

7 Comments
  • Tabby
    Feb. 20, 2013
    No drums & no diggie things (sorry, can't spell that) but my daughter borrowed 1 of my niece's electronic keyboards & I've always wanted to learn. My paternal grandmother was a piano teacher & I've always had this desire to play piano. I love listening to just piano pieces, as well as other forms of music. I find music both uplifting & expressive. So, I am...
    RHMLucky777
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    No drums & no diggie things (sorry, can't spell that) but my daughter borrowed 1 of my niece's electronic keyboards & I've always wanted to learn. My paternal grandmother was a piano teacher & I've always had this desire to play piano. I love listening to just piano pieces, as well as other forms of music. I find music both uplifting & expressive. So, I am going to find me some books & some sheet music & see if I can focus enough concentration to twiddle the electric ivories.
  • absent minded
    Feb. 18, 2013

    "A lot of people don’t know that for about two thousand years there was a systematic repression of free-form movement." -- Ms Rea

     

    Do you know what she's referring to?  I'm just curious.  Is she referring to Western Civilization?  I can't see that  it's really true.  Dance has always been important in every civilization...

    RHMLucky777

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    "A lot of people don’t know that for about two thousand years there was a systematic repression of free-form movement." -- Ms Rea

     

    Do you know what she's referring to?  I'm just curious.  Is she referring to Western Civilization?  I can't see that  it's really true.  Dance has always been important in every civilization I can think of.  Maybe it's the "free-form" part that is throwing me.  Is ballroom dancing free-form?  Is hip-hop free-form?  Is American Native dance free-form?  Are ritual dances all over the world free-form?  Why would there be a systematic repression?

     

    I agree, John, that dance is fun to watch and to participate in.  I love watching all sorts of dance -- it fascinates me.  And if you love music, it seems like moving your body rhythmically to music is almost second nature. 
    The Big Band Swing song "Sing, Sing, Sing" is one of my favorites.  I absolutely cannot listen to it without dancing!

    • John McManamy
      Health Guide
      Feb. 18, 2013

      Hey, Donna. In her talk, she refers from Ancient Greek and Roman times to the present, from going to "ecstatic dancing" from around the campfire (which she thinks would have been standard for hundreds of thousands of years) to far more formalized and ritualistic movement. During the world colonial era, the white men actively discouraged "the savage" from their...

      RHMLucky777

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      Hey, Donna. In her talk, she refers from Ancient Greek and Roman times to the present, from going to "ecstatic dancing" from around the campfire (which she thinks would have been standard for hundreds of thousands of years) to far more formalized and ritualistic movement. During the world colonial era, the white men actively discouraged "the savage" from their own forms of dance. Until rock 'n roll, contends Rea, free expressive movement, was taboo. I would contend we started to break free during the Swing Era, and "Sing Sing Sing" (one of my favorite pieces of all time) is ample evidence of that. I realize this doesn't cover every case, but I would support Ms Rea's claim in a general broad brush sweep of history sense.

       

      Maybe I can phrase it this way: If we went back in history to 1910 and started gyrating like Elvis, we would probably be arrested on morals charges. Louis Armstrong I think was only 10 years old at the time. The music of the day wasn't the kind that would make you want to get out of your chair. The most invigorating white man music of the day was John Philip Sousa. Yes, there were great jigs and reels being played in the hills, but these were in isolated pockets.

       

      Here's the tragedy of our age: Go to any venue with a dance floor, and for every 10 women out there (in my experience) there is only one man. O love dancing with 10 women at a time, by the way. :) 

    • absent minded
      Feb. 20, 2013

      Dancing wildly around a fire.  Hmmm.  I'm sorry, I still don't see it.  Maybe there are aboriginal dances that are truly free-form but it seems there are always some sort of well-worn ritualistic components...?

       

      I think of the cave paintings in Lasceaux (spelling?) France and Altamira Spain that are supposedly done 30,000+ years ago and...

      RHMLucky777

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      Dancing wildly around a fire.  Hmmm.  I'm sorry, I still don't see it.  Maybe there are aboriginal dances that are truly free-form but it seems there are always some sort of well-worn ritualistic components...?

       

      I think of the cave paintings in Lasceaux (spelling?) France and Altamira Spain that are supposedly done 30,000+ years ago and they are controlled, highly stylized, hauntingly beautiful art.  Maybe their free-form partners on those cave walls are the handprints of the artists.  I can see an artist dipping his hand in the charcoal and "signing" the art but there are dozens of these handprints all over the caves that seem, in ways, unrelated to the animal drawings.  A kind of imprint abandoning the formality of the art and not yet not bound by any alphabet.  Maybe that's the kind of free-form part of dance, the "handprint" of the individual.  Maybe not. 

       

      I see what you are saying, John.  There is a difference in eccentric personal gestures (as Baryshnikov thought of Tharp's suggestions) and choreographed dance.  And I have no idea where I am going with this.  My mind is filled with questions about how a wild dance around the fire might be influenced if it were suddenly happening in a performance hall with well-dressed viewers waiting for the movement to stop before they politely applaud.

  • peachy
    Feb. 18, 2013

    I sing - choral and all by myself though rarely solo work anymore because my BP-related anxiety and sensory distortions have become too severe.

     

    I also do art - which I consider a form of cosmic movement now that you brinig the subject up. I am dancing to the rhythms of my artistic instincts/visions/whatever.

     

     

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