June 22-25th, 2017

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Response-Ability: Physical communication through attentional tensegrity  

This is a Contact Improvisation skills and ensemble improvisation class that provokes dancers to train the bodymind in motion as a single action of attention. Attention is key to physical communication, especially that touch which is spatially flexible. Waking up all levels of energetic and sensory preparedness, we will practice the physicality of shared attention in duet, and group dances. Our work will include specific exercises, physical studies, scores and discussions to develop new skills and enhance our ability to meet in successful, complex, and creative relationships. Engaging attention as a force, we become connected through a fabric of forces in communication. Immersed in a dynamic play between generosity and daring, the physics of motion in a communion of care, dancers can discover unexpected dimensions in their physical relations. 

Well tuned physical attention forms a tensegrity between movers allowing them to become mutually “danced”. Decisions dissolve into experiences, and what was two dancers becomes a single expansive synergy. This is response-ability in motion. We will heighten and tune this ability by investigating the nature of our physical strength, the depth of our release, and the composition of our internal and external networks of exchange. 

Our goal is to be deeply awake, profoundly alive, and wildly present … together. 


Tensegrity: a synergetic system that both floats and contains by uniting compressed and elastic parts. It is the structural basis of our physicality. Here, we also study it as a system of communication. 


Nita workshop – Part I
Thursday June 22, 6pm-9pm
Open Jam
Friday June 23, 1pm-4pm
**Dinner break in downtown Asheville**
Nita workshop – Part II
Friday June 23, 6pm-9pm
Nita workshop – Part III
Saturday June 24, 9am-1pm
**BYO Lunch**
Nita workshop – Part IV
Saturday June 24, 2pm-6pm

Live Music Underscore (@ Battle Apartments Rooftop Terrace)
Sunday June 25, 2pm-4:30pm – Talk Through: 1:30-2 (good for new folks!)
***Arrive between 1:15-2 as doors to apartment building is locked after.***



Workshop Location
Center for Art and Spirit, 1 School Road, Asheville
  • Head west on Patton Ave, pass Skylanes Bowling.
  • Turn left at the next traffic light onto Bear Creek Rd.
  • Take an immediate right (passing the yellow wedge markers in road. Look for St. George’s Episcopal Church on left. There is a stone that says ‘Montessori School.’)
  • Park anywhere around building.  Enter by large red doors.

Sunday Live Music Underscore Location

Battle Park Apartments Rooftop Terrace

1 Battle Square, Asheville
Battery Park Senior Apartments at 1 Battle Square directly behind the Grove Arcade. Park on Street or Wall Street Garage or in Montford and walk.


Registration & Cost

Welcome out-of-towners!

We will happily set you up in Asheville jammer homes. Please contact Tom Kilby (828) 367-8579 with your housing needs!

Full Weekend Workshop
$100-$140 Sliding Scale Fee

A-La-Carte Classes and Jams

$30 – Thursday June 22, 6pm-9pm (Nita workshop – Part I)
$10 – Friday June 23, 1pm-4pm (open jam) Dinner break in downtown Asheville
$30 – Friday June 23, 6pm-9pm (Nita workshop – Part II)
$40 – Saturday June 24, 9am-1pm (Nita workshop – Part III) BYO Lunch
$40 – Saturday June 24, 2pm-6pm (Nita workshop – Part IV)
Live Music Underscore
$15 – Sunday June 25, 2pm-4:30pm Live Music Underscore

Click here to Register

Teacher Bio:

Nita Littleperformer, choreographer, teacher, scholar and writer, has been delving into the significance of improvisational dance actions the entirety of her professional career, which began with the emergence and development of Contact Improvisation (CI). Her work with Steve Paxton was research generative of CI including touring with him, developing teaching methodologies, performance practices and conceptual understanding of the form. Little received her PhD in Performance Studies in 2014 from the University of California, Davis. The breadth of her understanding bridges the field of dance improvisation to the expansion of human knowledge – investigations include physical/mental states in the physics of motion, relational and creative action, and the articulation of presence through ensemble improvisation and Contact Improvisation. She is in the initial stages of developing an institute for the study of Somatic Communication, based in Seattle but functioning through dance improvisational research ensembles located around the globe. This action is in partnership with a diversity of theorists from fields including cognitive therapy, anthropology, psychology, biology, philosophy, and performance studies.