Cori Olinghouse, MCAT, AmSAT

Influences

Cori Olinghouse is an AmSAT certified Alexander Technique teacher, choreographer, and archivist whose work explores the transformational capacities of the body in relationship to creativity, health, and culture.  Cori brings over a decade of experience from her own investigations in dance, improvisation, Feldenkrais, Laban Movement Analysis, and Bartenieff Fundamentals to her teaching. Her approach is further influenced by her creative practice research, bodyLITERATE with partner, Kai Kleinbard.  Their mission is to expand the idea of literacy to include the body as a central learning tool and to inspire body-centric practices that cultivate creativity, innovation and self-sufficiency.  The body’s ability to “speak” is central to how we learn and create.

Background

As a performer, Cori danced for Trisha Brown Dance Company from 2002-2006, during which she originated a role in how long does the subject linger on the edge of the volume… (2005), performed in twelve other pieces of repertory, and was featured as a soloist at the Bolshoi Theater as part of the Benois de la Danse award festival.  Since ending her tenure with the Company, she has taught technique and repertory classes at the TBDC studios on a regular basis.  In 2005, Cori began a dancing dialogue Bill Irwin and has since been researching a variety of movement forms that explore physical transformation and creating her own choreography – presented by Danspace Project, The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts, Bennington College, The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Dixon Place, Joyce SoHo, and the Movement Research Improvisation Festival.  Cori has taught Alexander Technique classes to the Trisha Brown Dance Company, Movement Research, and A.O. Movement Collective, as well as movement classes at CND in Paris, London Contemporary Dance School, Tseh Moscow Summer Dance School, Bard College, New York University, The New School, Rutgers University, Hunter College, Fordham University, Bennington College, Ohio State University, and Trisha Brown Studios, among others.  Cori holds a BA in Dance, Writing, and Video from Bennington College.

Approach

“I was first introduced to the Alexander Technique with San Diego-based teacher Ari Gil after suffering from an acute lower back injury from dancing.   At 12 years old I thought I would have to give up dance entirely.  After physical therapy, and many other movement therapies, my condition wasn’t improving.  Through Alexander lessons, I began to see where my habitual tensions blocked a sense of flow through my body.  Over time, I was able to move with more ease, freedom, and awareness – returning more pleasurably to dancing.

This imaginatively rich system has helped me to grow personally and artistically.  In teaching the Alexander Technique, I invite students to look at the practice as a potentially rich creative process of investigation and inquiry.  The Alexander Technique is not a technique that codifies movement or asks students to “practice until perfect.”  Instead it uses the power of observation to look at the impulses, behaviors, and shaping instincts for how a person embodies themselves in their environment.  I teach the Alexander Technique as a point of entry towards understanding movement because it’s premise underlies the capacity of the imagination in movement.  I believe the body is a deep place of possibility – that contains within it complex patterning, plasticity, and the ability for change.”

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