Re: Alinear Plants

Jeff Miller (
Tue, 12 May 1998 21:14:06 -0500


>Jeff (by the way, Goat Island pushing what envelope?)
The envelope of what is considered "dance". There is occasional
music...but the line between choreography, random movement, twitching, and
storytelling is so blurred that it's hard to tell the difference. Probably
somewhere between Martha Graham and the Futurists.

>> One inspiration came from a horticulture student, who
>>described for me the concept of alinear, as opposed to linear, geometry.
>>In a nutshell, instead of creating shapes by drawing lines between points
>>you create shapes by causing "growth" around a central point. A.J. Niehaus
>>and I used this a few months ago in our piece "Farandolae" to suggest a
>>cooling effect to harsh, angular images...
>Sometimes we have tried here to exchange ideas from the choreography
>...snippet... I
>wonder though what you mean, Jeff, by "cooling effect to harsh, angular
>images," and how is the growth from the center (outward?) done in your piece?

Our piece incorporated slide projections of various civil disturbances
(tianenman square, labor movement, Vietnam era, etc.) that were violent and
vividly angular, and attempted to counteract that "energy" (for lack of a
better term) with rounded movements, at first spiraling around a center and
then moving off into clumps of dancers (picts will be on the web probably
tomorrow). AJ was the principal choreographer, so she can tell you more
about that aspect ( I also created a
projected video using photoshop and premiere that began as a point and
gradually became a cool, blue, pondlike mass filling and overcoming the
slides while we danced. The idea was that we were sort of invoking it...I
can try to get some kind of digivid on the web, too, but that'll take
longer. The inspiration was from the book "The Wind in the Door" by
Madeleine L'Engle.

Your piece sounds fascinating, as well. I'm afraid I can't help much on
the choreographic end, except to say that we were influenced by middle
eastern and t'ai chi dance techniques. AJ may have more to say.

Rice? Down in Texas?


"Audacity means rejecting everything you have done before.
Even if it worked."