Phraseless Phrasing in Yvonne Rainer’s Trio A: Intersecting Dance, Technology, Perception, and Transmission
Phrasing is an important aspect of movement analysis because it allows one to break down and analyze small segments of continuous movement. In the sciences, phrasing (often referred to as movement segmentation) is seen as a challenging process to overcome since there are no clear instructions for how to segment movement “correctly.” While many researchers have taken on the research question, “What is a phrase of movement?” I take the opposite approach and ask, “What is phraselessness?” To explore phraselessness, I observe Yvonne Rainer’s post-modern dance work, Trio A. I conduct a multi-phase analysis supported by the Laban/Bartenieff Movement Studies framework, digital annotation tools, my previous experience in observing movement in scientific contexts, and my movement training in classical dance forms. I compare my analysis with other perspectives and find through my investigation that the only way to overcome the challenge of movement segmentation is to embrace and examine the multiple perspectives each body and lens can offer.
To aid in my observation and understanding of Trio A, I used multiple tools and modes of observation including motif notation, diagrams, drawings, executing the movement, and using digital annotation tools. Below I provide examples of some of the digital tools I used that allow researchers to easily share their annotations online.
With JS Timeline I compiled sources and chronologically ordered events related to Trio A onto an interactive timeline. To view the timeline click on the image below.
I used the annotation tool Memo Rekall to compare how other researchers discuss and write about particular segments of Trio A.
Movement Experience (using LMA terminology):
Karen Kohn Bradley, advisor
*This project was completed in partial requirement for my certification in Laban Movement Analysis through the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies (LIMS) in 2016.