In accordance with the Bodies in Play beliefs and values,
the following resources are recommended for artists
committed to welcoming all bodies
into rehearsal and performance spaces.
While there is full intention to keep this list growing,
it must be acknowledged that it will never be an exhaustive guide.
It cannot include lived experience, conversation, or the multitudes of social media content that go into shaping beliefs and values.
It can, however, serve as a tangible starting point for
conversations, questioning the status quo, and expanding understanding.
Looking at Race
Resmaa Menakem speaks with On Being (Podcast)
Looking at Gender
Looking at the Body and Ability
Looking at History
Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen (Book)
Looking Inside Ourselves
As facilitator of Bodies in Play, I am committed to always continuing my own education in support of all artists' physical empowerment and autonomy,
and promise to share resources and knowledge freely and broadly.
I welcome questions, conversations, and corrections.
May we all forever be Bodies, in Play.
-- Andrew Pearson
First and foremost, as the development of Bodies in Play has taken place in what we call Los Angeles, I acknowledge this land was once known as the home to those who identify as the Gabrielino-Tongva people and the Kizh people, who cared for and watched over this land prior to Spanish settlement and the eventual colonization of what we now call the United States. Those who identify as the Tongva and Kizh people as well as thousands of indigenous people continue to inhabit what we know as Los Angeles and I acknowledge and honor their past, present, and future on this land.
This is the same land "modern dance pioneer" Lester Horton developed the techniques that make up the foundations of my own contemporary dance practice, as shared to me through Loretta Livingston by way of Bella Lewitzky. The credit for Horton's dance training often goes solely to Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn and unfortunately his formidable studies with Native American dancers is usually ignored or underrepresented with no acknowledgement of the tribes or individuals with which he studied.
Loretta Livingston also introduced me to Bartenieff Fundamentals, developed by dancer and physiotherapist Irmgard Bartinieff. These movement Fundamentals "mirror the stages of development of the brain and the motor skills that babies and toddlers progress through on their way to mastering mature movement patterns" and as such lay the groundwork for a playful body. I must then also recognize the work of Dr. Stuart Brown as the leading researcher of play for providing language and support for the benefits of lifelong play.
To my very first dance instructor, Natasha Dorsey, thank you for sharing your love of dance as an expression of joy.
Last but not least, to all of my students, past, present, and future.
You shape this practice with every encounter.
You are my reason to keep playing.
Friends of BIP
If you are a fan of Bodies in Play,
you may also enjoy the work of these LA based companies: