Grounds & Grooves

29 October, 12 & 19 November – 13:00-17:00

3 sessions facilitated by Bettina Neuhaus and Thomas Johannsen

 groovy monkeygroove

c.1400, from O.N. grod “pit,” or M.Du. groeve “furrow, ditch,”

Sense of “long, narrow channel or furrow”

Meaning “spiral cut in a phonograph record”

Fig. sense of “routine” , often depreciatory at first, “a rut.”

Adj. groovy in lit. sense of “of a groove;”

In slang sense of “excellent,” from jazz slang phrase in the groove “performing well (without grandstanding).”

As teen slang for “wonderful”

To enjoy intensely.

To take gratification

To go with the flow

These 3 sessions are inspired by our curiosity about ‘groove’ as a captivating phenomenon that once it is housed in dance and music it elevates the composition to a ‘higher’ and more exciting level.

Performers are very much aware of the moment a groove is established in their music or dancing and usually this groove also communicates directly to the audience: something swings, flows and takes us with it. A groove is like an undercurrent with its own particular rhythm that we immediately pick up on a bodily and intuitive level and engage with.

It is a kind of feel that makes you move with.

‘Being in the groove’ is like an evoked field in which ‘forces of unseen connections’ are come into play directly altering our experience.

Although we can all feel when something grooves or is groovy, ‘groove’ is a phenomenon that is almost ungraspable and unexplainable.

So, what is ‘the secret’ of the groove? What are its hidden underlying dynamics and ‘ingredients’?

From ground to groove

In order to find our way into the world of ‘groove’ we will take a closer look at our relationship to ground and gravity as a way to open up our bodies to the passage of time.

  • How to use the ground as a dynamic rather than static element within our movement?
  • How can we give ground to a movement / to a sound / to a phrase / to a duet?
  • And how does a sense of (common) ground effect the overall composition?
  • How does the play with gravity open the channels of the body to time and activates our awareness for pulse and rhythm?
  • How can we then invite a groove into our actions?
  • And how to place then your following actions within that groove in order to sustain it?
  • How do ground and groove connect the performers? How do they effect the audience?
  • We will instigate ‘hidden grooves’ as an undercurrent in movement or sound in that it is palpable but not necessarily audible as such.

The sessions are open to any professional improvisers, no matter their discipline. We will approach the subject from a music and dance perspective in first instance, but it could be taken into any other artistic discipline from there.

We have a preference for a stable group to work with. Please let us know whether you would be able to come to all three sessions, or which session you would have to miss. We will then put the group together for the research.

You can respond by using the ‘Leave a reply’ option to this post.

What are the Carpet Sessions? / Where is the studio

20 thoughts on “Grounds & Grooves

  1. I’d love to join, but can’t make it any of the three sessions… Excellent topic!
    Groove lives in between, in moving tension, in full-filled time, in space and grace and letting things manifest on the undercurrent, both explosively and slow.. Have fun guys, hope to be part of this research again in the future.

    1. hi Marije, yes thanks for the reaction, and such a shame you cannot be there. What about meeting with Bettina and me for a coffee in Nov/Dec, to talk about our experiences and maybe plan a follow up in spring WITH YOU 🙂 ? xT

  2. Zwaan and me would love to join. For now we are sure to be able to come for the first session on the 29th. We will do our best to find a way to come to the other two, but for now we haven’t found discount train tickets to travel from Nijmegen. We will keep searching!
    In case we don’t find a way, is it possible to attend only the first session?
    Thank you!

  3. Hi Thomas and Betina,
    It has been a little while since my last carpet session but I would love to join. I am only able to join the first two dates.

  4. Hi Thomas and Bettina,
    great topic, I’ll come. As far as I can see now I can be there all three sessions. xxx, Natanja

  5. Hi Thomas and Bettina, I’d like to join too, but I can only make the november sessions. Is that ok?
    ciao, Tanaquil

      1. Oh I just realize: you’re in Amsterdam ! I’m in Bruxelles! Sorry for my misunserstanding 😉 hope to meet your réal onem day

  6. Misunderstanding on my side!!!! AhAHA, I didn’t realize that your session happen in Amsterdam!
    I’m in Brussels so I could’nt come… So enthousiast about your research that I forgot the essential! The ground! Hope to meet you later…

    1. If you can join us for both sessions It will be a pleasure to have you with us.
      See you 12 November.

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