Dance as Ritual – Dance as Performance

10th Annual Retreat
July 15 -22 2018
The Wheel of Fortune

Taught by:
Catlin Cobb, Susan Osberg, Mireille Feyzeau

A Dance Across Borders Workshop
at Jardin d’Alice
Nerigean, (Bordeaux) France
Adv Registration: July 1 270E Final Registration: July 8 310E

For more info:

A dance laboratory in the vineyards of France, open to people of all backgrounds, to discover the ritualistic nature of movement and contemporary performance – a holistic study crossing borders of language, culture, and creative expression.

IS a workshop formed around the primal and ecstatic nature of movement. Dance at its core is historically an ageless activity, a connection with something other, a symbolic transformation of experience. Contemporary dance and performance artists have continued to acknowledge the transcendent nature of the human body via deeply personal relationships to movement, myth, and metaphor – often expressed as ritual. DRDP is a laboratory dedicated to exploring the ritualistic nature of movement and performance.

The workshop weaves together movement, spiritual traditions, and the natural world to form an innovative and holistic model for creative study. Stimulating sensory abilities, intuition, and the imagination, participants acquire new skills and paradigms in which to approach their personal life and/or artistic work. Sharing, discussion, and reflection support this process while fostering a cohesive community. The known and unknown propel it along. This intensive week-long retreat is an immersion into an experience that crosses borders of language, culture, and creative expression.

Morning sessions begin outdoors where participants form a relationship with the environment. Traditional and contemporary modalities are presented daily to experience both the spiritual state of dance, as well as the innate intelligence of the body. Sufi dancing, yoga, butoh, and shamanic journeys expose students to movement in an “altered-state” – a trance-state, where specific traditions built upon a meditative, formal practice can be accessed. Contemporary, somatic techniques emphasize “embodied thinking,” an awareness of body kinetics, the body in space, and body intelligence – the body as biography, as archive, as memory – illuminating the individual.

A theme guides the week’s activities of improvisations, investigations, and informal presentations. Personal narratives and group collaborations have pushed the boundaries of traditional and non-traditional forms – an ancient Celtic divination with local tress, rites of passage in a driveway, a flashmob on the streets of Bordeaux, and the building of iconic structures. Participants develop their own perceptions and experiences of ritual while discovering the reverent, irreverent, and the unlikely. Each year has led us more deeply into the interplay between man and nature, the pursuit of an unbridled imagination, and a theater of the elemental.

DRDP is held at Jardin d’Alice, a center for artistic development in the Bordeaux region of France. Surrounded by vineyards, fruit trees, cornfields, and pastures, the private property is a lush pastoral environment inspiring a response as well as an opportunity for renewal.

Participants have included professional dancers, singers, actors, musicians, clowns, astrologers, documentary filmmakers, crafts people, teachers, and therapists, among others. Meals are provided by two teams of “cookers” who are given partial scholarships. Food is local and organic. Sleeping accommodations are dormitory and/or camping.

DRDP is a project of Dance Across Borders – a floating international festival for independent dance artists established in 1995 in the United States. DRDP offers certification to participants who complete 3 workshops (150 hours) among other requirements.

For further information:
Jardin D’Alice: (France) 44 0953411397
Catlin Cobb: 718 875 9263
Susan Osberg: 845 831 1832

Previous workshops:

2016: Le et La: Balance Polarities / Search for Unity
2015: Art as Activism / Spiritual Warrior
2014: Forms of Desire / Rites of Passage
2013: Back to Source / Personal Thrones
2012: Spirit of Place / Trees and Celtic Rituals
2011: Structures Inherent in Traditional Rituals
2010: The I and The We
2009: Tracing Synchronistic Threads and Unconcious Connections