Contact Improv. 18h Class | Jam | Performance whit Steve Batts and Matan Levkowich

immagine contact


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Steve and Matan come back to Italy after dancing with us in the ItalyContactFest (2013 – 2014) to propose their research: Poetic movement and Animal istinct


Steve Batts – Poetic movement

Artistic Director of Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company, which he setted up with Ursula Laeubli in 1991. The company is based in Derry in Northern Ireland. In his company the practice of Contact Improvisation is very important and it is a strong influence on his performance and touring work and on his broad participation programme. He teaches internationally. Contact Improvisation is his folk dance. It is a practice that he comes to primarily as a participant. Through it he deepens his understanding of the human movement world that surrounds him and he re-discovers the deeply poetic and touching possibilities in pre-verbal, non-verbal and beyond-verbal communication and creativity.

Echo Echo Dance Theatre Company

Matan Levkowich – Animal Istinct

He is a dancer, choreographer and graphic designer. His approach to movement is based on the study of the body’s intuition. The study of intuition enables to navigate through instability and develops trust in the body’s capacities. His choreographic works explore narratives of body/relations. His main interest lays in utilising coincidence into stable, communicative scenarios. As a teacher, Matan’s focus lays in contact improvisation and movement research. He started giving regular classes in Israel in 2008. Since then, he had the chance to teach in different circumstances and to different audiences; from professional dancers to amateurs and teenagers, in open workshops, festivals and closed intimate groups. Currently he lives in Vienna and teaches in Austria and around.


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 workshop description

“Poetic Movement”

a short orientation for the workshop by Steve Batts

I like to think of dancing as “poetic movement”. It bears a similar relation to our everyday movement as the poetic use of language does to our normal everyday prosaic speech.

The basic material is the same… the vocabulary, the grammar the standard syntax… but the opportunity for play and imagination, for density and association, for games of form and serendipitously fortunate accidents of layered meanings, are more intense.

This workshop will place the standard practices of Contact Improvisation in a broad context of poetic movement. By putting the common, and often habitual, Contact Improvisation approaches to space, time and interaction into a broader context of movement the hope is to enrich our understanding of the opportunities and limits of close proximity and to deepen the ways in which that understanding can also transform the way we dance when we are further away from others or alone in a solo.

The work has a natural development towards composition, score creation and performance for those who are interested in those things. There will be opportunities to watch and to show. Those who want to can perform in a public performance at the end of the workshop.

The workshop is open to everyone. It will be interesting for those with little or no experience of Contact Improvisation and or other dance/movement practices. It will be challenging and demanding (in a good way!) for those who have extensive experience.

I am sure that my approach will provide a lovely counterpoint to the work of Matan Levkovich who will be teaching the other part of this workshop programme.

Animal instinct  – Matan Levkowich

Animal instinct is an ongoing movement research. The hardcore of this practice is to gain freedom in motion. By moving away from any ideology, style or form, we can reexamine our physical abilities with fresh eyes. The work refers to information from various movement disciplines (functional anatomy and biomechanics, martial arts, somatic practices, contemporary dance & C.I) and offers a wide spectrum of tools to study our body, to understand movement and practice physical communication.

We will examine the following subjects:
– Body preparations (warmup/cool down)
– Flexibility and movement fluidity
– Undulation and spiral patterns
– Muscle tonality & contraction types
– Hands as feet and feet as hands
– Proprioception & Reflexive awareness
– Structural limitation & manipulation
– The full range of speed

We will work in various constellations (solo, duet or group work), studying the never-ending possibilities that occurs in dynamic improvisations.
We will re-inhabit our moving/dancing body and express our animal instinct.


April 3rd-4th-5th-6th, 2015


7.00pm (arriving time) – after dinner Jam


from 10.00am to 1.00pm class – Matan Levkowich

from 14.30pm to 18.30pm class – Steve Batts

after dinner  Jam


from 10.00am to 1.00pm class – Matan Levkowich

from 14.30pm to 18.30pm class – Steve Batts


from 10.00am to 1.00pm class – Steve Batts

from 14.30pm to 17.30pm open Jam

19.00 – improvisation performance (25 minutes)


The workshop takes place at Spazio Seme ( Via del Pantano, 36) in Arezzo – Tuscany (IT)
You can stay in Spazio Seme even for the night, with the sleeping bags. If there are some special needs (especially about food), let us know and we’ll try to manage at best!

The workshop is 155 € if you subscribe before March 22th  (only friday dinner isn’t included) – 175 € for subscriptions after March 15th.

 50% discount for people who come from abroad


for info and subscriptions: – – 3383366049 –
Steve and Matan