Theorizing near future dances.
A proposal to investigate the queer relation between dance and technology. (2022)
This paper is in development
This paper examines recent developments in dance and choreography where corporeality and embodiment are extended or replaced by digital technology. From my experience as a dance researcher and choreographer working in this field, I notice there is need to insist on the potential of a technological turn in dance practices. Contributing to this movement, I propose to interrupt the certitude of Western dance theory by not settling for the present determination to centralize corporeality and embodiment in 21st century dance practices. This means to give into the blur of what I remember from performance and dance theory as articulated in the early nineties.
Technology interrupts the play between the dancer and the dance, a play with presence and absence, appearance and disappearance. Technology is a cheating player in this game as it, paradoxical to its binary language, transcends our comprehension of physical embodiment, and as such glitches my understanding of a body-centric dance rooted in Cartesian dualisms and dichotomy. The interruption I suggest here stems from my desire to make the curious relation between dance and technology more visible as a unique creative space. A moving space, a space in transition, in between the virtual and the physical world.
Therefore, I strategically buffer mainstream dance theory. I need to remix and expand my terminology as I remix and expand media in my hybrid dance practice. To rearranges traditional interpretative principles to come to a comprehension of what dance can be, instead of what it is. My search is thus for hermeneutics that support the tensed, doubtful, and sometimes dysfunctional though mostly creative relation between dance and technology.
In closure of my article, I suggest a queering of dance ontology in order to illuminate the often still considered difficult and irregular hybrid dance practices. Closing my article, I suggest a potential queering of dance ontology, a redefining that opens up the ‘here-and-now’ analysis of Western modern and contemporary dance theory in favor of a speculative ‘then-and-there’ utopia of technology-expanded dance or even non-anthropocentric choreographic installations.
Keyterms: dance theory, technology in dance, 21st Century dance practices, queer theory