An investigation into the Shadow Dance used in Physical Storytelling
A review of the background development and use of the Shadow Dance score from Physical Storytelling is presented in this article. Physical Storytelling is a practice that has evolved from contemporary dance improvisation as well as dance and drama therapy practices which incorporate the separation of a verbal narrative and an improvised performance of that narrative so that a teller and audience can observe and develop an expanded understanding of material using the process of witnessing dance generated metaphor. This process has been used in therapy, clinical supervision, arts-based inquiries, and to integrate learning experiences from training, workshops and professional conferences using an embodied format. Several improvisational scores or general guidelines have emerged that facilitate the joining of dance and narrative. The Shadow Dance is one of these scores. A review of how Physical Storytelling emerged from experimental dance and drama practices such as Contact Improvisation, Authentic Movement, and Dynamic Family Play as well as how the Shadow Dance can be used, will be presented.
Key Words: Dance movement therapy; drama therapy; creative arts therapy; Physical Storytelling; arts- based inquiry; modern ritual