David Neumann

As artistic director of the advanced beginner group, work presented in New York City at P.S. 122, Dance Theatre Workshop, Central Park SummerStage (collaboration with John Giorno), Celebrate Brooklyn, and Symphony Space (collaboration with Laurie Anderson). Featured dancer in the works of Susan Marshall, Jane Comfort, Sally Silvers, Annie-B Parson & Paul Lazar’s Big Dance Theatre, and club legend Willi Ninja; previously a member of Doug Varone and Dancers and an original member and collaborator for eight years with the Doug Elkins Dance Company. Over the past 20 years, choreographed or performed with directors Hal Hartley, Laurie Anderson, Robert Woodruff, Lee Breuer, Peter Sellars, JoAnn Akalaitis, Mark Wing-Davey, and Les Waters; recently appeared in Orestes at Classic Stage Company, choreographed The Bacchae at the Public Theatre, and performed in a duet choreographed with Mikhail Baryshnikov. SLC, 2007– 

Undergraduate Courses 2017-2018

Theatre

Movement for Performance

Open , Component—Year

This class meets twice a week.

This class will explore the full instrument of the performer, namely the human body. A daily warmup will open the body to larger movement ranges while introducing students to a better functioning alignment, efficient muscle and energy use, full breathing, clear weight transfer, and increased awareness while traveling through space. A combination of improvisation, contact improvisation, set phrases, and in-class assignments creating short movement-based pieces will be used to explore a larger range of articulation that the body reveals regardless of the words spoken on stage. In all aspects, the goals of this class are to enable students to be courageous with their physical selves, more articulate with their bodies, and more personally expressive in performance. No movement background is required, just a healthy mix of curiosity and courage. In addition to occasional reading handouts, there will be opportunities to attend rehearsals and performances of professional theatre and dance in New York City. Please wear loose, comfortable clothing to class.

Faculty

Directing, Devising, and Performance/Something From Something Else: Mass Media, Live Bodies, and Contemporary Performance Strategy

Intermediate , Component—Year

This course meets once a week, culminating in additional rehearsals within a typical production schedule.

This course will explore the interaction between media and “liveness” in the process of making original, collaborative performance work. By combining embodied processes with the creative reuse of mass media, this course is designed to introduce students to an experimental performance strategy that incorporates design elements throughout the playwriting and production process. By stripping found media materials from their original context and arranging them in new ways, participants will explore the methods and politics of appropriation in performance work. By then extending these techniques into embodied practices, students will experiment with various methods of extracting movement, text, and intention from these source materials. Class workshops focusing on text, sound, and video manipulation in a collaborative format will alternate with experiments in performance composition and lectures on the historical use of appropriation in a variety of art forms. Participants should have an interest in both performance and performance technology, though experience in either is not a prerequisite. The course culminates in a rehearsal period and performance.

Faculty

Graduate Courses

Theatre 2017-2018

Graduate Lab

Component—Year

Required for all theatre graduate students. This class meets once a week.

Taught by a rotating series of Sarah Lawrence faculty and guest artists, this course focuses on developing the skills needed for a wide variety of techniques for the creation and development of new work in theatre. Ensemble acting, movement, design and fabrication, playwriting, devised work, and music performance are all explored. The class is a forum for workshops, master classes, and open rehearsals, with a focus on the development of critical skills. In addition, students in Grad Lab are expected to generate a new piece of theatre to be performed each month for the Sarah Lawrence community. These performances may include graduate and undergraduate students alike.

Faculty

Contemporary Collaborative Performance

Component—Year

Open only to first-year graduate students and required for all first-year Theatre graduate students. This class meets once a week.

This course will provide a critical and supportive forum for the development of new works of original performance, focusing primarily on where current dance and theatre combinations find inspiration. In the first semester, students will explore contemporary theatre-building techniques and methodologies from Dada to Judson Church and beyond. The majority of time will be devoted to lab work, where students will create their own short performance pieces through a multidisciplinary approach. Students will be asked to devise original theatre pieces that utilize methods such as solo forms, viewpoints, chance operations, and creations from nontheatrical sources. In addition to the laboratory aspect of the class, a number of plays, essays, and artists’ manifestos will be discussed. In the second semester, students will collaborate on a single evening-length work, utilizing theatrical and nontheatrical sources in an attempt to speak to our cultural moment. Please note: The second semester will require additional developmental/rehearsal time outside of class. In addition to class work, there will be several opportunities to visit rehearsals and performances of professional theatre and dance in New York City.

Faculty

Movement for Performance

Open , Component—Year

This class meets twice a week.

This class will explore the full instrument of the performer, namely the human body. A daily warmup will open the body to larger movement ranges while introducing students to a better functioning alignment, efficient muscle and energy use, full breathing, clear weight transfer, and increased awareness while traveling through space. A combination of improvisation, contact improvisation, set phrases, and in-class assignments creating short movement-based pieces will be used to explore a larger range of articulation that the body reveals regardless of the words spoken on stage. In all aspects, the goals of this class are to enable students to be courageous with their physical selves, more articulate with their bodies, and more personally expressive in performance. No movement background is required, just a healthy mix of curiosity and courage. In addition to occasional reading handouts, there will be opportunities to attend rehearsals and performances of professional theatre and dance in New York City. Please wear loose, comfortable clothing to class.

Faculty

Previous Courses

First-Year Studies in Theatre: Creative Methodologies in Theatre and Dance

Open , FYS—Year

In Creative Methodologies, students will encounter various 20th-century dance and theatre artmaking practices, theories, and artists; write response papers;, and create original performance pieces. In addition, students will meet in collaboration with FYS in Dance in an exchange of theory- and practice-honing perceptive and communicative skills, constructing a viable foundation from which to work creatively. FYS in Dance and FYS in Theatre students will meet together once a week to explore and create work that will meld both modalities through improvisation and composition. Structured activities will form a framework for investigating mutual interests.

Faculty

New Genres: I EXPECT YOU TO DIE—Algorithms and Performance

Component—Fall

Class meetings: Through October 27, Thursdays, 3:30-6 pm. Rehearsals: Oct. 31-Nov. 17, Mondays-Thursdays, 7-10 pm; Saturdays, 1-5 pm. Performances: November 18-19, 7:30 pm.

I EXPECT YOU TO DIE is a special collaboration between New Media Lab and Theatre. The course will explore the algorithm as an expression of mind, a type of consciousness, a method by which we unpack and reorganize research and source material, as well as utilize as a set of rules that the performance can follow. In this inaugural version, Ferraiolo and Neumann will have students mine various James Bond films with lines of inquiry into the cultural, sociopolitical, artistic/aesthetic, and philosophical structures found there. Blending code, video mapping, and performance, students will then write a series of algorithms that “remix” the scripts, visuals, gestures, and narrative elements of three classic Bond films to create an entirely new stage version of the Bond villains and their eternal struggle against 007. The class will meet once a week for the first eight weeks, then add four evenings and one daytime weekend for three more weeks as it shifts into a rehearsal process, culminating in two performances.
Faculty

Contemporary Collaborative Performance: Grad Projects I

Component—Year

Open only to first-year graduate students and required for all first-year Theatre graduate students. This class meets once a week.

This course will provide a critical and supportive forum for the development of new works of original performance, focusing primarily on where current dance and theatre combinations find inspiration. In the first semester, students will explore contemporary theatre-building techniques and methodologies from Dada to Judson Church and beyond. The majority of time will be devoted to lab work, where students will create their own short performance pieces through a multidisciplinary approach. Students will be asked to devise original theatre pieces that utilize methods such as solo forms, viewpoints, chance operations, and creations from nontheatrical sources. In addition to the laboratory aspect of the class, a number of plays, essays, and artists’ manifestos will be discussed. In the second semester, students will collaborate on a single evening-length work, utilizing theatrical and nontheatrical sources in an attempt to speak to our cultural moment. Please note: The second semester will require additional developmental/rehearsal time outside of class. In addition to class work, there will be several opportunities to visit rehearsals and performances of professional theatre and dance in New York City.

Faculty