Our year 11 contemporary dance assessment for semester 1 consisted of dance exercises taught by Rachel. Due to a dance injury I sustained 14 weeks ago I was unable to participate in the assessment but, instead was asked to asses my peers and write corrections and strengths they demonstrated throughout the class. In this class I really feel, as a group, they lacked an effective dance vocabulary. In answer to the question 'What do you feel you need to work on in this exercise?' there was only really the basic terminology used, basic things said that did not show a very thorough grasp on dance language. I feel that the use and understanding of communication in verbal modes was poor and at a low standard. For this age they should be able to effectively converse appropriate dance vocabulary.
Although that said, this conclusion is targeted at the group as a whole; there were certain individuals who came up with some valuable answers. In this task I feel that the demonstration of appropriate dance technique to the contemporary genre was at a satisfactory standard. The correct contemporary technique was evident in a number of students, while others, I feel require more effort. The group, in general lacked physical competencies. Strength and flexibility was not a strong highlight, although they did demonstrate good coordination skills. The drop swings exercise proved to be their strongest asset.
The Grande Battement exercise required work, turn out and alignment seemed to be, overall the thing that most people had difficulties in mastering. The identification and application of correct posture and alignment was evident, more often than not throughout the class. In general I feel that my peers have improved over the weeks but still demands a lot more work in order to strengthen their technique. Presenting dance sequences, I feel was a positive feature in the contemporary assessment to some extent.
My fellow peers, generally had a thorough grasp on all exercises demonstrated. They understood and carried out dance combinations with great awareness to what they were doing. This said I feel that although my peers know and can demonstrate the exercises, they have no real approach or presentation to their work. Style has a great impact on dance. The way a dancer approaches an exercise or dance piece can change one's technique, body stance and physical ability. Julie and Stephanie showed a great display of this in all exercises, but particularly the jump exercise.
I believe that if my peers were to work on their style and presentation it would change their overall dance technique. Identifying and demonstrating safe dance practices is a very strong focus, not only in the contemporary assessment but in work we have done this semester. Recognizing and correcting posture and alignment was evidently, on the whole a strong plus point, with my peers very aware of it. The demonstration of correct anatomical execution was to a pretty high standard, with most students displaying a good knowledge of safe dance practices. It was evident that in the drop swing exercise feet were going over toes, bending at the knees after a jump was apparent and, from most people in the Grande Battement exercise the kicks were not exceeding the turn out limit and turn out was from the hips. This overall was a strong point in my peers contemporary dance assessment.
They identified and demonstrated safe dance practices to an adequate level. The standard of contemporary dance technique was at a satisfactory level. Although improvement was evident the final outcome was not outstanding. They showed a strong understanding of the exercises, demonstrating them well and using a good range of safe dance practices but were let down on technique, presentation and dance vocabulary. Apart from a few exceptional dancers, the strength and flexibility among the group is at a poor level. I feel on a whole, the group possesses the ability to dance with great style and technique but lacks commitment, enthusiasm and effort..