Dance: Teaching

Teaching forms a foundational part of my practice as a dance artist; though I often work with highly trained professionals (in dance and in other disciplines) in my choreographic and performance creation-work, in my teaching practice, I am committed to serving children and so-called non-dancers. I see this work as co-terminous with my performance and creation activities, a way of sharing with a broad public, including those for whom “dance” remains a strange, potentially frightening foreign territory, the deep insights that come from a life committed to rigorous training and exploration at the edge of performance and embodiment. Teaching “non-dancers” and children forces my dance practice to remain close-to-the-ground, committed to articulating esoteric ideas in accessible languages. As people learn the language of dance, their appetite for seeing more of it grows–in the long haul, this teaching work seeks to nourish the dance ecology as a whole, building future audiences with sufficient kinaesthetic intelligence to watch dance well, and to put dance concepts into motion in their own lives and thinking in ways that strengthen the web of life. The dance is in all of us.

For more on my teaching work, see: www.gullcrydance.com

Most of the classes I teach are not advertised, but occur when someone or a group invites me to teach. My rates are flexible but reflect the many years of teaching experience I bring to our time together. I do online teaching and in person in Victoria, B.C. or Salt Spring Island, B.C. Contact me and we can discuss if there is a fit.

These are upcoming public offerings:

Dance for Children (see: http://www.gullcrydance.com)

10 years experience. Innovative, child centered approach. Creative, contemporary dance; fundamental movement education to facilitate skillful embodiment. http://Dance for Children (see: www.gullcrydance.com)

For the 2021-2022 year, Victoria, B.C. classes will be offered through the Fairfield-Gonzalez Community Association, for ages 3-10 on Saturday mornings. Salt Spring Island classes will be offered through Salt Spring Parks and Recreation, for ages 3-10 on Friday mornings.

I remain available for residencies in the public school system in B.C., through ArtStarts. I am taking bookings for the 2021-2022 school year for work in schools in Victoria, the Lower Mainland, and the Gulf Islands. Please be in touch early to book! https://artstarts.com/artist-profile/kristen-lewis

I also do in-school residencies through the Salt Spring Arts Council’s Artist-in-the-Class programme, here. https://ssartscouncil.com/aic/

Dance Improvisation for Everybody.

Wednesdays, 7:30-9pm Victoria B.C. @ St. Matthias Church. Resumes September 2021.

Online, Sundays from 5-6pm PST. Resumes September 2021.

This class is open to so-called “non-dancers” who are interested in exploring embodiment through a practice of dance improvisation. (I think all bodies are dancing bodies, so the term non-dancer is a bit of a mis-nomer–and “dancers” are welcome too!) The ‘dance class’ introduces some of the conceptual and kinesthetic approaches to improvised movement I have developed over many years of practice/research in experimental dance; this includes an introduction to developmental movement patterns and embodied anatomy, rooted, in part, the work of Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen. I invite participants to build on these approaches to discover their own ever-evolving improvised movement languages.

Absolute Beginner’s Dance Improvisation. Online. Wednesdays, 9am to 10am PST/12pm to 1pm EST. Resumes September 2021

Register Here: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/absolute-beginners-dance-improvisation-w-k-lewis-weds-9am-may-12-june-23-tickets-152599756981

This class offers a gentle, fun introduction to dance improvisation, suitable for people who identify as “non-dancers.” Kristen will introduce you to the “Brain Dance,” a simple set of movement patterns, based on the patterns humans grow through in the first year of life. These help to integrate body and brain function, as a foundation for moving into free dancing with greater ease, freedom, and full-body intelligence. It is never too late to discover the dancer within. No need to be fit or flexible or young or free from injuries. I work in a way that is accessible for a range of ability levels–the practice can be done lying down or in a chair if need be. I have been teaching dance for over a decade and know how to make dance accessible for a wide range of ability levels. Give your body the gift of a little dancing joy on a mid-week morning–awaken the child within, no matter how long you have been on earth.

Dance-Theory Lab. Dancer Edition. Dancing theory–exploring social theory through dance. Cohorts organized according to interest. Send me an email to express interest: klewisperformance@gmail.com.

This class is for anyone with a devoted practice of dance, which I construe very broadly as meaning anyone whose art-practice involves thinking-and-moving-and-training-with the kinaesthetic apparatus as primary. We will put key texts and concepts in dialogue with insights from embodied anatomy to explore ways of thinking/talking/dancing as an entangled, socio-natural continuum. Scores will be proposed and we will move with these, together. For those interested in working with me on future creation projects, this is a good chance to see how I work and how the work works with you.


Embodying the socio-natural entanglement during the forest fires of 2020.
Children deserve a chance to dance their freedom. 10 years teaching dance to children: not a day wasted. Their freedom helps me earn and remember mine.
Dance student at work and at play.
Salt Spring Island workshop.
Rainwood Dance Studio.
May 2018.
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