Experiential learning for the 21st century : Somatics of singing practice

Learning for the 21st Century’ Co-presented by OSE, Antiuniversity and Looping the Loop and Theatre Network Thanet’s FLEX.

Facilitator: Marianne Dissard

This ninety-minute introductory workshop, based on the facilitator’s ongoing training with NYC vocal teacher Robert Sussuma (vocallearningsystems.com), will explore vocal learning from the 21st century perspective of sensory awareness.

There will be NO lip trills and NO rag dolls warm-ups. The workshop is an attempt to introduce you to experiential, somatics- and Feldenkrais-based, vocal education. It aims to provide lifelong tools for self-learning (applicable to any artistic practice) through the concepts of variations and ‘unexpected learning’.

We all use our voices. Most of us don’t really understand or even ever think about what’s going on ‘down there’ or the actual interactions between all the related parts of our sound-producing ‘system’, from toes to top of the spine. This free workshop is therefore open to all, from complete novices to voice professionals alike. No special equipment or clothing required.

The self-awareness workshop begins with you setting a reference for yourself (by singing or speaking a short phrase of your own choosing, as privately as space will allow—this is not a performance nor a talent show). We will then proceed to gather sensory information about your own vocal apparatus, allowing us to look at how we tend to think (and imagine) the different parts of our own voice (you’ll be surprised by the exploration).

Through Feldenkrais-styled experiential learning (consisting of small, barely perceptible and sometimes purely imagined movements), with playfulness essential (as per neurological science) to the process, we will explore the art of self-sensing. The workshop ends with a return to the initial reference ‘phrase’, at which point participants can sense for themselves (again, this is not a performance to be assessed by either teacher or other participants) what may have, often in very unexpected ways, shifted.

This deeply personal, subjective and sensory exploration of our own selves brings a new—and lasting—ease and joy in our own voice. With surprising and more exciting options available to us as singers, actors, and speakers, we gain a more stable and lasting self-confidence in our own, unique and deeply personal artistic choices.

This event is part of the Antiuniversity Now festival 15-22 June 2019.

ABOUT PRESENTING PARTNER: Looping the Loop and Theatre Network Thanet’s FLEX Looping the Loop and Theatre Network Thanet’s FLEX : Looping the Loop is a festival of live arts in the three towns of Ramsgate, Margate and Broadstairs in Thanet on the East Kent coast. Theatre Network Thanet is a monthly meet up for locally-based actors, artists, directors, writers, producers and theatre-makers. We meet every 1st Thursday of the month at alternating locations around Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate. FLEX is run by Looping the Loop and is a free weekly skills- and resources-sharing opportunity for practitioners of all creative fields to come and explore and learn from each other, test out ideas, keeping our creativity sparked and honing your skills. Professional and aspiring performance practitioners, artists interested in performance and any/all theatre types are invited to join.

ABOUT FACILITATOR : Marianne Dissard Marianne Dissard is a French-born, Ramsgate-based singer, performer and writer from Tucson, Arizona. “Marianne Dissard is that rare sort of talent: a literary chanteuse who renders the whole world with keen observations, wit, and pathos” (Mitch Cullin, ‘A Slight Trick of the Mind’ & ‘Tideland’). Dissard wrote and recorded her third album ‘The Cat. Not Me’ (2013) with Sergio Mendoza (Y La Orkesta) who joins the ranks of previous composers Joey Burns (Calexico) and Naïm Amor for ‘L’entredeux’ (2008), and Italian piano maestro Christian Ravaglioli for ‘L’abandon’ (2010). “An eccentric character who releases very fine and wonderful records, in fact so eccentric she once toured the French Pyrénées on foot with a donkey” (Marc Riley, BBC6). Capping three decades of life in America and her Tucson trilogy of albums, Dissard released ‘Cibola Gold: Best Of 2008-2015’, tracklisted by BK-One (Wax Poetics, Rhymesayers). Dissard has taught vinyasa and yin yoga in Paris and Ramsgate, and collaborated with choreographers Ami Garmon and Frank Willens (Tanz Im August, Berlin). Dissard’s first book, ‘Not Me’, a memoir of trauma and life as a touring musician, is available from October 15th, 2019 as paperback, ebook and audiobook with a cover design by Jamie Keenan. “Not just painfully honest, but viscerally, brutally honest – a struggle for survival, and ultimately self-acceptance” (John Parish, ‘Let England Shake’ and ‘How Animals Move’).

Accessibility info
Due to factors beyond our control, this event is inaccessible to those with limited mobility. We can record parts of the session if there is a demand. Please send an email to info@openschooleast.org if you are interested.