Emilyn Claid

A research weekend hosted by ID's WinLab 2013

Falling About - two days for exploring physical, metaphorical and psychological acts of falling through a range of different disciplines.

Falling… physically microscopic as breathing out and catastrophic as an earthquake.
Falling… is an unfixing, a movement between one place and another, an uncertainty of in-between-ness.

Undergirding this research weekend is a paradox. Falling is frightening, shameful, life threatening and falling can be life changing. In falling we are victims of gravity and we are agents of change.

Research Lab
Saturday 14 December, 10am-5.30pm
Sunday 15 December, 11am-5pm

This Research Lab brings together an invited group of artists and research practitioners from different disciplines and offers an opportunity to meet, talk, set up provocations and interventions, make things, throw things away, be uncertain, fall about, share knowledge about the paradoxical theme of falling. There will be a structure for the two days, based on what people would like to offer, with lots of time for discussion and falling (failing). Perhaps new collaborations will emerge, a publication, perhaps nothing. Invited are live artists, architect-academics, writers, psychotherapists, circus practitioners, choreographers and teachers…

If a healthy creative life requires an acceptance of falling, how might we work choreographically, within different communities, to embrace falling as necessary for living change when, ethically and physically, falling holds risk of shame and fear of death?

Level: Open to artists and arts professionals – please contact Emilyn Claid at Emilyn.Claid@roehampton.ac.uk to book a place. You can also read Emilyn's blog here.

Round Table Discussion
14 December, 6.30-8pm

Writers for Performance Research 18.4 ‘On Falling’ will share and debate different experiences and writings on falling before opening discussion to the audience. Chaired by Prof. Ric Allsopp - Head of Dance & Choreography Department of Performance Falmouth University, and joint editor of­ Performance Research.

Performance Research 18.4 is available here and will be for sale at the event.

‘Undergirding this issue of Performance Research is a paradox. Falling is fearfully dangerous, the consequences can be devastating, painful if not life threatening and processes of falling offer opportunities for life change, opening up new pathways… These writings emphasize being in our bodies, in relation to the environment, in the actuality of falling, where we come face to face with uncertainty and the loss of empirical self and linear time. Not as a negative nihilistic experience – but rather as a pathway to curiosity – falling to fly.' (Performance Research 18.4 2013)

The Panel:
Charlie Fox - Artistic Director: Counterproductions
Amy Sharrocks - live artist, sculptor and filmmaker
Mark Harvey - live artist, Senior Lecturer in Dance Studies at The University of Auckland, Aotearoa/New Zealand
Wendy Hubbard - director and dramaturg, currently a PhD candidate in the Drama Department at Queen Mary, University of London
Swen Steinhauser - director, performer, dramaturg and lecturer of contemporary performance, currently writing a PhD thesis in Cultural Studies at the University of Leeds
Catherine James - lecturer in Modern & Contemporary Art, Christie's Education
Hari Marini - Teaching Associate at Queen Mary, University of London
Chloe Johnston - Assistant Professor of Theater at Lake Forest College, Chicago
Francisco Lobo - Teaching Assistant in the MFA Art Writing, Goldsmiths College and currently PhD Art Student, Goldsmiths College
Emilyn Claid - Professor of Choreographic Practices, University of Roehampton and Gestalt psychotherapist

The Round Table Discussion is open to all, free of charge. Places must be booked in advance via info@independentdance.co.uk or 020 7091 9650.


Emilyn Claid PhD, MSc.
Professor of Choreographic Practices
Roehampton University
Gestalt Psychotherapist (UKCP)

Emilyn is a choreographer, writer, director and teacher, working between academic and professional dance contexts, interested in the processes and practices of making movement based performance. Emilyn also works as a Gestalt/existential psychotherapist and enquiries from both fields are integrated into practice based research projects – such as Falling About (Winlab 2013).

Emilyn’s career stretches back to the 1960s when she was a ballet dancer and the 1970s when she was co founder of X6 Dance Space in London and co-editor of New Dance Magazine. In the 1980s she was artistic director of Extemporary Dance Theatre; and in the 1990 worked with Phoenix Dance Company and Candoco Dance Company while performing and producing her own shows such as Virginia Minx at Play (1992). In 1997 she was awarded a PhD and published a book, Yes? No! Maybe… Seductive Ambiguity in Dance Theatre Performance (Routledge 2006).

Between 2003-2013 Emilyn was Director of BA & MA Choreography at Dartington College of Arts and during the merger with Falmouth University she played a major role in developing the dance and choreography courses.

Over the past few years choreographic projects have taken her to Auckland, Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore, Berlin, Helsinki and Beirut.

Alongside her work as a professor and choreographer, Emilyn has a private psychotherapy practice in London.