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Title: Dancing poetry : Jonathan Burrows's reconfiguration of choreography
Author: Perazzo Domm, Daniela
ISNI:       0000 0001 3483 3009
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2007
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The starting point for this interpretive study of Jonathan Burrows's (b 1960) choreography is the limited and fragmentary existing literature on his work. Critical essays and performance reviews hint, tentatively, at the idiosyncratic, eccentric and enigmatic qualities of the movement language of this British contemporary choreographer. In this thesis I interrogate the distinctiveness of his performances, arguing that they challenge conventions of co-existing dance genres and techniques, by employing a variety of disciplinary, cultural and theoretical contexts. These frameworks both surround and construct the work, just as they do my interpretations of it: British experimental dance, American early postmodern choreography, recent European performance, ballet and English folk dance; postmodernist and modernist stances. Critical and literary theory provides the methodological framework for the research, which draws on intertextual and hermeneutical perspectives to construct interpretations that take into account the discursive and multilayered nature of the work. Detailed analyses of six pieces created between 1988 and 2006 (Hymns, Stoics, The Stop Quartet, Both Sitting Duet, The Quiet Dance and Speaking Dance) address structural, thematic and conceptual aspects that I have identified as central to Burrows's dance: the composite character of his movement vocabulary, the cultural specificity of his art, his contentious relationship with minimalism and abstraction, his collaborations across arts, and the presence of underlying compositional strategies and intimate motives throughout his work. In moving towards a poetic reading of Burrows's dance, I argue that the specific type of language constructed in his pieces and the distinctive modes of signification they embody, between form and content, rule and transgression, non-referentiality and empathic recognition, suggest an interpretation of his choreography as a form of both poetic language and poetics, that is, as both creative and theoretical practice.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available