LEIMAY LUDUS Lab with Butoh Dancer Zack Fuller
Improvisation into Performance
In this LEIMAY LUDUS Lab (Improvisation into Performance) Zack Fuller focuses on creating possibilities for improvisation through the development of an omni-centered body. Utilizing elements of Grotowski work and Min Tanaka’s Body Weather workshops, as well as exercises developed by Zack Fuller over his 20-year practice of improvised dance, it is an introduction to a methodology of preparation for improvised performance involving the accumulation of material drawn from areas of human experience such as daily life, folklore, dreams, and visual art.
Each session begins with a warm-up that is both vigorous and relaxing, moving into focused explorations emphasizing the balance between structure and impulse. Jumping, rolling, and elements from Hatha Yoga and Capoeira are combined in ways that emphasize the balance between structure and impulse while challenging, strengthening and activating the upper body and arms as much as the lower body and legs. Slow movement combined with partnering exercises, physical actions from daily life, and visualization as a means of engaging the body’s inner stream. Each session culminates in extended improvisations in relation with music, space, and other bodies, allowing participants to experience authentic impulses in the body and draw imagery from the subconscious.
Appropriate for and open to dancers, movers, improvisers, actors, people interested in butoh, or anyone seeking a physical experience. No previous dance training is necessary.
Zack Fuller grew up playing in the forests, streams and meadows of Fairfax County Virginia. As a youth he trained in gymnastics and equestrian vaulting, and studied psycho-physical approaches to acting with Tom Lane, co-founder of The Washington Theatre Lab. In 1985 he joined the post-punk psychedelic metal band Scythian as lead singer, sharing stages with groups such as Bad Brains, Black Market Baby, and Pussy Galore. In 1988, he took a series of workshops with Ryszard Cieslak of the Polish Laboratory Theatre of Jerzy Grotowski, joined Cieslak for theatrical experimentation in Athens Greece, and participated in a year-long theatrical research into Shakespeare’s The Tempest grounded in the work of Cieslak/Grotowski at La Mama ETC after Cieslak’s death in 1990.
Eventually he came to focus on dance, training in contact improvisation, capoeira, and ballet; and working with dancer/choreographers such as Eiko and Koma and Poppo Shiraishi. During this time he began developing a practice of solo dance shaped by his interests in clown, silent film, and esoteric spirituality, as well as the work of certain avant-garde Japanese dance artists associated with the butoh movement. In 1997 he was cast in Min Tanaka and Susan Sontag’s Poe Project: Stormy Membrane, and went on to perform and train with Tanaka over the next few years throughout Japan, Europe and the U.S. Zack Fuller’s original dance works have been presented by Movement Research at Judson Church, Leimay/CAVE’s New York Butoh Festival, Plan B in Tokyo, Mobius in Boston, The Dance Hakushu Festival, Movement Research at Judson Church, St. Thomas College in Thrissur India, and elsewhere. His collaborators including cutting edge musicians such as Keiji Haino, Tatsuya Nakatani, Jonathan Wood Vincent, Kat Hernandez, Booker Stardrum, , Michael Evans, David Grollman, John Dikeman, and Kenta Nagai. His latest series of dances: Twisted from Constantly Watching Doves, is a collaboration with dancer/choreographer Emily Smith.
Photographer Credit: Rijard Daniel Bergeron
ABOUT LEIMAY LUDUS
LEIMAY LUDUS is an invitation to play in the world of LEIMAY. Through LEIMAY LUDUS Ximena, Shige and the LEIMAY Ensemble share and continue to articulate LEIMAY’s physical conditioning practices, visual art craft, aesthetics, and philosophies while providing another point of access to their creations and process, and contributing to an understanding of the works distinctive to LEIMAY.
LEIMAY LUDUS offers different opportunities to work with artistic director Ximena Garnica, current ensemble dancers, and with an inspiring group of local and international guest and resident teachers working within the field of butoh, physical theater, performance art, and experimental vocal practices.
LEIMAY LUDUS is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.