Showing posts from May, 2010

An Experience in Movement Observation

This is a short bit I wrote in 2009 about my observations of a Sunday night at Toronto's Dovercourt House. The writing was published in MergeMagazine in 2010.

The moment I walk in, I am swallowed by the mass of dancing bodies - a hundred couples, each one embracing a space in the room with fast, smooth movement patterns. I blink, and their collective motion suddenly turns sharp and percussive, dictated by a change in the music. It seems the very purpose of their dance is to churn the hot thick air inside and around them. I am in the middle of the Sunday night Salsa social at Toronto’s Dovercourt House.

After a few minutes, one particular dancer captures my attention. The riffs and accents of the music seem to pulsate directly out of his joints, particularly his hips, knees and shoulders. He shifts his weight quickly from one side of the body to another, simultaneously juggling the beats down and up his spine. From head to toes, he is playing the music with his body as if the entire …