WHO WE ARE:
The Center for Dance, Movement and Somatic Learning is an incubator for creativity, research, education, performance and community connections. It operates as an independent center at Stony Brook University in the College of Arts and Sciences and houses the Dance Program, Dance Minor and the newly proposed Minor in Somatic Learning at the university. The Center’s vision encompasses a drive to develop heightened interdisciplinary thinking and action, developed through the study of dance and movement arts, applied through art-making, innovation and performance of all kinds, and primed to collaborate with a wide range of academic disciplines and community interests. Founded and directed by Amy Yopp Sullivan, the Center is comprised of faculty members: Maria Loreta Celitan, Joya Powell, Alison Russell, Randy Thomas and Amy Yopp Sullivan.
In addition to the university curricular programs in dance and somatic learning, The Center includes the Outreach from the Center which offers classes for the local community; the Performance Dance Ensemble: a student performing company; Master Classes offered by Professional Artists from around the Globe; the Body/Mind Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Research and Creative Projects; IronWorks on the Edge: a professional media/performance company based at the Center; and Events from the Center which includes workshops, performances, and fundraising for global and local needs.
WHAT IS “SOMATIC LEARNING”
“The purpose of somatic movement education and therapy is to enhance human processes of psychophysical awareness and functioning through movement learning. Practices provide the learning condition to:
• Focus on the body both as an objective physical process and as a subjective process of lived consciousness;
• Refine perceptual, kinesthetic, proprioceptive, interoceptive sensitivity that supports homeostasis and self regulation;
• Recognize habitual patterns of perceptual, postural, movement interaction with one’s environment;
• Improve movement coordination that supports structural, functional and expressive integration;
• Experience an embodied sense of vitality and extended capacities for living.”
(International Somatic Movement Education and Therapy Association, 2003)