The Natural Dance Movement method

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Origins

The Danza Movimento Naturale (DMN) method was created in 2005 by Giovanni Zappulla, choreographer, dancer and artistic director of the choreographic centre L'espace. His long stay in France - at the National Conservatory of Music and Dance in Boulogne Billancourt and at the Ridc (Rencontres Internationales de danse contemporaine) - gave Zappulla a strong pedagogical imprint that pushed him to deepen the techniques and the path already taken by the dancer Isadora Duncan (1877-1827).

In the footsteps of Isadora Duncan: the rebel genius and her 'inner movement'

A rebellious genius, Isadora was an indispensable part of dance history precisely because she did not have a pre-established academic education and had the courage to explore. The Natural Movement Dance thus takes its starting point from an in-depth study of the techniques of the American dancer, the first to speak of internal movement. "We could define it as a movement that finally resolves the dichotomy between spirit and body. A dichotomy,' Zappulla points out, 'that has been imposed as a superstructure but that the Greeks did not know: in theatre they were musicians, actors, dancers together. In the same way, internal movement starts from the soul, radiates to the bones and deep muscles, to the mind and body: it is a force that we have not been used to using for centuries'.

The connection with oriental disciplines

The DMN method - born out of the collaboration between the choreographer and the dancer Annachiara Trigili - developed through the substantial union of contemporary dance with music and the encounter with Taijiquan Chen and Qigong, disciplines in which we find the concept of internal movement, consistent with human nature in its biomechanical, energetic and psychic aspects. 'It should come as no surprise that Western thought and techniques meet with Eastern ones, just as the mind and body dialogue again through the Natural Dance Movement method,' observes Zappulla, 'because the human body is conceived as an orchestral instrument. It has the same harmony that we find in the images of the dancing Greek figures, the same harmony that Isadora sought in museums, and then brought back to the theatre: the natural place of this harmony'.

Questions to (re)start from

What contemporary dance has been doing again for just over a century is to give the body the opportunity to construct its natural history, to express its essential movement according to its true balance. In the DMN method, the body learns to listen to these laws.

"We have to start," says Giovanni Zappulla, "with some questions: do we let our body express its own rhythm? How can we follow its natural mechanisms to really move, regardless of the effect to be produced, the result to be achieved? How can we move slowly or quickly, without being forced into artificial functioning? If technological progress has helped shrink the space-time in which we bulimically acquire information, what about individual space-time?"

Sicily, abroad, the past and the future

A method, DMN, that has already been exported across borders, from France to Mexico, through workshops and performances in which the dancer's body is no longer considered as an object to be subjected to often irreversible wear and tear as a tribute to the aesthetics of movement, but as a centre of strength, growth, well-being. The dancer thus becomes strong through dance itself. And dance becomes natural again, incredibly rich; bodies can go far beyond questions of techniques and styles, movement has its own truth.

'At the same time' the choreographer continues, 'the research that I carry out could only be born in Sicily. The company that I direct could only be conceived in a land with an immense heritage of culture, in the round, and that possesses the strengths and capabilities to find a meeting point. A contemporaneity in evolutionary continuity with a past in which mind and body were united in a single harmony. Our task is to find it again. Only then will the dancer realise that he already has music inside him, written only for him: and all he can do is listen to it and share it'.

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The Company

Origins

The Zappulla DMN company was founded in 2015 in Palermo with the aim of promoting and disseminating contemporary dance locally, nationally and internationally. The founding artists are choreographer, dancer and teacher Giovanni Zappulla and Annachiara Trigili, dancer and teacher. Zappulla DMN was born out of a passion for unconventional dance and continuous training that has led, over the years, to an awareness of the need to restore quality and dignity to danced movement. Elements that are often sidelined in favour of a purely aesthetic result. Hence the high-level pedagogical and choreographic commitment based on the Danza Movimento Naturale method. The Zappulla DMN company is based at the Xinergie Centre in Palermo, where various cultural activities take place in continuity with the artistic and pedagogical objectives of its association and founding team: contemporary dance, contact improvisation, theatre and music, Qigong and Taijiquan Chen style.

Giovanni Zappulla

The Zappulla DMN company was founded in 2015 in Palermo with the aim of promoting and disseminating contemporary dance locally, nationally and internationally. The founding artists are choreographer, dancer and teacher Giovanni Zappulla and Annachiara Trigili, dancer and teacher. Zappulla DMN was born out of a passion for unconventional dance and continuous training that has led, over the years, to an awareness of the need to restore quality and dignity to danced movement. Elements that are often sidelined in favour of a purely aesthetic result. Hence the high-level pedagogical and choreographic commitment based on the Danza Movimento Naturale method.

Annachiara Trigilli

The Zappulla DMN company was founded in 2015 in Palermo with the aim of promoting and disseminating contemporary dance locally, nationally and internationally. The founding artists are choreographer, dancer and teacher Giovanni Zappulla and Annachiara Trigili, dancer and teacher. Zappulla DMN was born out of a passion for unconventional dance and continuous training that has led, over the years, to an awareness of the need to restore quality and dignity to danced movement. Elements that are often sidelined in favour of a purely aesthetic result. Hence the high-level pedagogical and choreographic commitment based on the Danza Movimento Naturale method.

Roberta D'ignoti

A graduate in Literature, Music and Performing Arts from the University of Palermo, she began dancing at the age of seven, studied jazz and modern, then classical and contemporary dance at the L'espace Choreographic Centre with Giovanni Zappulla and Annachiara Trigili.
She attended several ballet and contemporary dance stages at the Centre National de Danse in Paris with various teachers, participating in a twinning project between L'espace and CND coordinated by Marina Rocco and Giovanni Zappulla.
She took part in the contemporary dance internship with Marina Rocco (head of the IPRC of the CND in Paris) in 2013 and in the project "Dance, space and architecture", held by Damiano Ottavio Bigi, a dancer from Pina Bausch's company. Furthermore, in 2014 she took part in "Unitanz", a cycle of studies in contemporary technique and choreography in Lecce, organised by the Folkwang Universität in Essen with teachers such as Malou Airaudo, Giorgia Maddamma, Rodolpho Leoni, Susanne Linke and Stephan Arndt.
 Committed to training in the Danza Movimento Naturale method, she is now a professional dancer in Giovanni Zappulla's company, for which she has performed "Tech no trash", "Memories from the future", "Natural Landscapes" at Teatro Mediterraneo Occupato (Palermo) and Teatro de la Danza (Mexico City), "On feeling" and "Wunderkammer".
 He is a Taijiquan practitioner of the Chen style and Zhineng Qigong.



Sandra Gomez Villavicencio

Dancer and scenic creator with a focus on internal, natural and martial movement. She began in the Centro Morelense of the Arts of the State of Morelos and in the Foramen M. Ballet, both in Cuernavaca, Mexico.
In search of training continuity and stage specialisation, he follows courses in theatre, dance, music, technology and performance with masters such as Giovanni Zappulla, Aladino R. Banca, Nicolas Poggi, Francisco Cordova, La Bruja Danza, Jovair Longo, Jean Sebastien-Lourdais, Master Sui Heng Sheng (direct disciple of Shin Yan Ming, 34th generation of Shaolin warriors) and others. She is currently learning Chinese martial arts and teaches Shaolin Kung Fu to children.
She is co-founder of the Beznei Collective, where she has been involved as a creator and performer, with a total of seven of her own productions of small and large format, presented in various states in Mexico. She won a scholarship with PECDA Morelos 2015-2016 (Morelos artistic creation and development stimulus programme) emerging creator/dance/choreography, with the project "INMANENTE. La última es/cena'.
From 2015 to 2017 he collaborated with M.I.M. Arte Escénico with whom he performed on stages in Mexico City, Guanajuato, Morelos and Puebla (Mexico) and Palermo (Italy). In 2016, she participates in the first artistic residency with the Zappulla DMN company, with which she presents shows at the TMO in Palermo and at the Teatro della Danza (Mexico). In 2018 she is again invited to Palermo, to learn the Natural Movement Dance method, a project with mobility sponsorship from the Prince Claus Fund.

Giuseppe Rizzo

Musician and composer, he graduated in guitar in 2007 from the Vincenzo Bellini Conservatory of Music in Palermo under the guidance of Maurizio Norrito. In 2011, he graduated in Didactics of the musical instrument. In 2017, he obtained his master's degree in Electronic Music. As a composer, sound designer and live electronics performer, he has several collaborations in the fields of theatre, film and performing arts to his credit, including: Alessandra Pescetta ("L'ombra della sposa", 2017, produced by La Casa dei Santi Film, selected for the 74th Venice Film Festival, Orizzonti section); Letizia Russo and Franco Visioli ("You know I'm no good", 2017, produced by the Venice Biennale for the Biennale Teatro 2017 festival); Claudio Collovà ("Horcynus Orca - Transito e ricongiungimento", 2016, and "Ulyssage #3 - Telemachia", 2013, produced by Teatro Biondo Stabile, Palermo; "Massa e Potere", 2015, and "Ogni qualvolta levo gli occhi dal libro", 2014, produced by Fondazione Orestiadi, Gibellina); Giuseppe Massa ("Nel fuoco in chorus", 2016, MIBACT; "Sono venuto sull'onda rovesciata con delle perle sulla fronte", 2016, SuttaScupa); the Dadalchemici company ("AlProleter", 2013, Fondazione Orestiadi, Gibellina); Andreea Costenco ("Camino HistoryOrganicStructure", 2012, Odeon Gallery, Bucharest); Isabella Ragonese, with whom he has won several theatre prizes ("Che male vi fo'", 2004, of which he is also co-author of the text, "Asina", 2006, "Bestino", 2004); Andrea Cusumano ("SomethingaboutLisistrata", 2005, a dramaturgy applied to space, curated by the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London). In 2010 he published for ZONA Editrice 'Inferni in cerimonia', an audiobook of poetry and electroacoustic music with the writer Antonino Bondì. Since 2009 he has been a member of the dance company OmoniaContemporaryArts, directed by Silvia Giuffrè, with whom he has produced several shows ("Prendo il corpo in parola", "3:00 di Alice Tatge", "L'uomo nero", "SHARE", "La donna puma"). He currently collaborates with Sicilian singer-songwriter Simona Norato, with whom he produced the album "La fine del mondo", 2015, published by La Fionda Dischi under the artistic supervision of Cesare Basile, for whom he also composed the electronics and soundscape for the albums "U fujutu su nesci chi fa?", 2017, "Tu prenditi l'amore che vuoi e non chiederlo più", 2015, both released by Urtovox/Audioglobe. Since 2006, he has been a member, as a stage musician, of the contemporary dance company l'Espace Centro Coreografico of Palermo, for which he has composed and played live music for several shows: "Coming Soon", 2006, produced by the Regional Province of Palermo, "Tech No Trash" 2010, co-produced by the Festival Energie Alter-Native, "Natural Landscapes", 2017, co-produced by MIM Arte Escenico and staged in its world premiere at the Teatro de la Danza - Centro Cultural del Bosque in Mexico City.

Productions

Project

Love you-man's love


Choreography and direction: Giovanni Zappulla
Music: Giuseppe Rizzo
Duration: 60 minutes

"Love you-man's love" stems from research into the spiritual origins of the movement, which in turn stems from an anthropological and ethnomusical investigation into the trance of ancient Mediterranean peoples. In particular, the studies conducted on the rites and traditions of pre-Christian Sicily through the guidance of ethnomusicologist Sergio Bonanzinga (University of Palermo) and Giuliana Maria Rizzuto, an ethnoanthropologist and expert on the Middle East and Coptic culture, provide scientific support. An important contribution also comes from the hypnosis techniques conducted by Vannina Bruna, president of the Mediterranean Association of Ericksonian Hypnosis based in Corsica.

It is an intercultural project on countries in the Mediterranean area which, united by a history of conquest and coexistence between heterogeneous peoples and cultures, have enriched their contemporary social substratum by sharing a similar yet unique past.

Through the Danza Movimento Naturale methodology of choreographer Giovanni Zappulla, the piece seeks to highlight what human beings universally share: love, understood as the universal energy that the mind acts when it is immersed in an altered state of consciousness, such as the meditative state, which leads to the awareness of the bond between the individual and the universe. It is a reflection on the practices that have always populated every part of the world and on the potential of the human race that, by dancing, celebrates its hymn to cita.

The challenge is to bring dancers onto the stage who are able to access altered states of consciousness consciously, making them ultra-sensitive and therefore highly expressive artists. The project includes a first phase of choreographic, anthropological and musical research concerning the pre-Christian era and a second phase to discover hypnosis techniques, a legacy of the American psychotherapist Milton H. Erickson. The research focuses on rituals and ceremonies that, through movement and music, lead to a state of trance. The group consists of dancers, musicians and singers and offers the spectator an intense, but above all always different experience: the artists, drawing from an altered state of consciousness, will create an ever new result with each performance.

"Love you-man's love" also benefits from the valuable collaboration with composer and sound designer Giuseppe Rizzo, whose experiences range from classical composition to electroacoustic research, and singer Irene Ientile. This project integrates the materials collected from the research, which are processed through live electronics and real time sound processing, a technology for capturing and immediately transforming sound to create a vibrant musical universe.

The artist on stage, in an altered state, draws from his stream of consciousness, giving life to sounds, noises, chants, words and phrases that are extremely coherent with the inner landscape he is experiencing, which, digitally reworked, produce a sound atmosphere of strong aesthetic impact. In this profound state, the artist produces images that the universe of his mind returns to him and that become inspiration for the set design that, through the use of video technology, makes this particular environment visible to the spectator.

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