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Conference Dancing Technologies

Dancing Technologies:
New Media and Dance Education

September 28th-29th, 2017 in Tallinn University, Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communications Institute

Super Nova Cinema


Participation fee 30 € (including coffee breaks and luches)


New media and virtual reality create challenges to dance education. Recordings (video) have started to take over dance teaching. While formerly video was a means of documentation and feedback, now it replaces a dance teacher. How do digital media and video experience of dance change dance production and education, and how can we take advantage of the situation? How does augmented reality change a society and how do these changes affect dance practice and education? Virtual networks create new relationships between people. How do these relationships affect dance making and interpersonal dynamics in dance? What are the relationships between digital media, with its potential for "distracting" attention, the self-discipline needed for professional success in the performing arts?

Programme (subject to change)
Thursday, September 28

Exhibition of the photo project "Mask of Femininity" by Karl Toepfer (SJSU, USA) and Heili Einasto (TLU, Estonia) as a digital performance.

9:30-10:00 Registration and morning coffee

10:00 opening: Katrin Niglas, Vice-Rector for Research

Katrin Saks, Director of the BFM

10:20 Panel 1 Dance Education and New Technologies
10:20 Paul Beaudoin (USA) "Moving Past Spectacle: Dance, Education and New Technologies"
10:40 Andrius Katinas (Lithuania/ Finland) Some insights on probelmatics of dance education/pedagogy. Is there a space for new media and technologies?
11:00-11:30 Discussion

11:30-11:45 Coffee break

11:45 Panel 2 Image technology and Dance
11:45 Karl Toepfer (USA) Image technology and dance narrative
12:05 Sille Kapper & Madli Teller (Estonia) "What could video based analysis and re-embodiment offer for dance knowledge and creation. Folk dance example"
12:25-13:00 Discussion

13:00-14:00 Lunch

14:00 Panel 3 Dance on Screen
14:00 David Yoken (Finland) Physical Cinema
14:20 Clara Björk (Sweden) Dance on Screen
14:40-15:15 Discussion

15:15-15:30 Coffee break

15:30-16:45 Film "A Sound of Movement" by Nadja Girich with a brief discussion afterwards

17:00-18:30 Afternoon workshop - Külli Roosna & Kenneth Flak "Responsive Body/ Responsive Space" (pre-registration required). On both days the work-shop is the same, max number of participants is 20 people)

Friday, September 29th

9:30-10:00 Morning coffee

10:00 Panel 4 New Technologies in Dance Making
10:00 Aleksander Väljamäe, Tiina Ollesk, Rene Nõmmik (Estonia) Neurotheatre
10:20 Olga Zhitluhhina & Ramona Galkina (Latvia) Mobile /phone/ composition. Experimental course for dance art
10:40  Birgitte Bauer (Norway) Siku Aappoq/Melting Ice - a performative intercultural installation
11:00-11:40 Discussion

11:40 – 12:00 Coffee Break

12:00 Panel 5 Understanding Technology
12:00 Dave Black (Denmark) Making Sense of Technology
12:20 Indrek Kornel (Estnonia) Perfomers Perspective in a Networked Perfomance
12:40-13:15 Discussion

13:15 – 14:15 Lunch

14:15 Panel 6 Virtual Reality
14:00 Maria Goltsman (Estonia) On Coexistence of Visual Image and Movement in a Dance Performance
14:20 (via skype) Zeynep Gündüz & Keez Duyves (Netherlands)
14:40 Kadri Raag (estonia) Ease your stage fright on Virtual Reality
15:00-16:40 Discussion

16:40-17:15 Films: „Motion, Emotion – Seven Days in Copenhagen” and Kino Eyes short dance films

17:30-19:00 Afternoon workshop - Külli Roosna & Kenneth Flak "Responsive Body/ Responsive Space" (pre-registration required). On both days the work-shop is the same, max number of participants is 20 people)

17:15-18:45 Dancing City Tour (pre-registration required)


Information about presentations and workshops

Moving Past Spectacle: Dance, Education and New Technologies
by Paul Beaudoin

There is no escaping the torrent of digital media in our 21st century lives. 
In this digital world, you can find tools that will help you create, archive and remix cultural artifacts.   The tools, often called apps, assist choreographers, dance archivists, and dancers explore and expand the boundaries of their imagination.   In some instances, these apps can choreograph complete works in an artificial environment which can then be mapped on to human performers.  In others, apps enhance movement and performance by adding multi-dimensional, 3-D, or theatrically or physically impossible environments and movements creating a virtual reality that has unlimited possibilities.
Moving Past Spectacle: Dance, Education and New Technologies, explores the resources, tools and creative work that has been enabled by digital resources that inform choreographers, dancers, researchers and educators to embrace these new technologies, employ them to create deeply enriched, resonant work and build a framework for advancing the field of movement and dance.

Paul Beaudoin, composer, multimedia artist, author, and Online Education Specialist is a recognized leader in eLearning and a frequent international workshop and keynote speaker.  He is the recipient of several teaching awards including the prestigious Exemplary Course Award from Blackboard, Inc. and is a member of their elite MVP program.  His work has been published by Oxford University Press, the Chronicle for Higher Education, Campus Technology, and eLearning in Action.  In 2015, Dr. Beaudoin was the Fulbright Scholar in residence at the Music Department at the Institute of Fine Arts here at Tallinn University.  Paul has taught music, art and strategies for online learning success and retainment for Brandeis University, Northeastern University, the New England Conservatory of Music, Rhode Island College and Fitchburg State University where he is now Visiting Assistant Professor for the School of Graduate and Continuing Education.

Some insights on probelmatics of dance education/pedagogy. Is there a space for new media and technologies?
by Andrius Katinas

Within my presentation/discussion I would like to draw attention on the very
basic conditions of education within the institunion of Universities. What
conditions there are for transmiting the knowlidge and creating the knowledge.
What are the possibilities to construct educational process, while
acknowledging the potentiality and friction acumulated by corporeal nature of
dance and its almost antagonistic relation towards new media.

Andrius Katinas is a Lithuanian dance artist based in Finland. He studied theatre and dance arts at Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre and Theatre Academy of Finland. Since 1999 he actively working as performer and choreographer both in Finland and Lithuania. His main focus lies in different modes of collaboration and continuous search of new approaches and perspectives in dance making.

Image technology and dance narrative
by Karl Toepfer

The relation between dance and technology in the twenty-first century presumably implies a dominating relation between dance and digital media. But this dominant relation further implies the emergence of new forms of dance pedagogy that focus on dance as an image rather than as a performance bound by a particular time and space. Students seeking careers in dance will have career opportunities to the extent that they show proficiency in the use of image technologies, especially video, and in their skill at making the camera “dance” or function as an integral part of choreographic imagination. But image-based dance requires proficiency not only in the operation of the camera and the editing of images, but in the use of animation, special effects, and motion capture. At the same time, the deployment of digital technologies on behalf of an image-based dance aesthetic inevitably entails a new understanding of how dance functions narratively, as a sequence of movements, as a representation of experience. Image-based performance leads not only to a more fragmented perception of the dancing body and dance movement; it also allows for more comprehensive thinking about the spaces in which dance movement occurs, so that dance happens everywhere and is consumed everywhere on digital devices. In this digital reality, live performance is no longer the default condition of dance, but rather a specific occasion with a specific purpose instead of a standard purpose. The presentation then focuses on examples of how image technology impacts on dance narrative, requiring a different kind of choreographic imagination and a different approach to what dance “says” or “means” in relation to audiences who exist “outside” of the conventional dance culture but who will nevertheless shape opportunities for dance students. The final section explores relations between dance and robotics. This section examines the use of motion capture to produce interactive dances or video game dances. Through motion capture, large databases or vocabularies of movement tropes can be assembled in unique ways and applied to different kinds of bodies to create dances that would otherwise be impossible to perform on a stage.

Karl Toepfer has taught at San Jose State University since 1983, the same year he received his doctorate in Theater Arts from UCLA. Before entering graduate school, he was a production assistant for Fanfare Films in Hollywood, served as a cinematographer and photographer in the U.S. Army, and worked for Dart Industries. At SJSU, he was Graduate Coordinator for the Theater Arts Department for many years before serving as Director of Productions for two years. He has published numerous scholarly articles in performing arts journals, including TDR, Scandinavian Studies, Comparative Literature, and The Journal of the History of Sexuality. He has published three scholarly books: The Voice of Rapture; Theatre, Aristocracy and Pornocracy; and Empire of Ecstasy: Nudity and Movement in German Body Culture 1910-1935. His scholarship has also appeared several anthologies, most recently in On Stage Alone(2012), Fashion in Film (2013), Metropolzauber (2013), and the online Routledge Encyclopedia of Modernism (2014). He has been involved with University initiatives related to gaming and education, online delivery of curriculum, and projects designed to enhance technological proficiency in the humanities. A number of his video lectures on contemporary theatre are available on YouTube.

What could video based analysis and re-embodiment offer for dance knowledge and creation. Folk dance example
by Sille Kapper, Madli Teller

The authors have learned contemporary research methods of Norwegian and Hungarian folk dances and tried these out in their own dance labs. Videos of collected Estonian folk dances have become accessible only recently and the multipl possibilities of their usage is still ahead, thus we take a look at how video analysis has been used outsie Estonia: Based on archival video analysis, followed by dance embodyment and building dance knowledge. After that we present 2-3 cases studies based on Estonian materials in which we focus on couple dance peculiarities found on video recordings, touching on posture, the positions of partners to each other, the aim of using different holds. We take a look at the couple dances from the 19th century (in Estonian context: Walz, Polka, Reilender, flatfoot). The central themes are: how can we use the re-embodiment based on video analysis in dance research? How can it help us to „read“ the dance? Why is this video-corporeal research difficult to perform? Can the discoveries dervided from this method shake or at least diversify our present knowledge and opinions? How this kind of „read“ information can be used in contemporary folk dance choreography?

Sille Kapper, PhD is a Dance Researcher at the Baltic Film, Media, Art and Communication School of Tallinn University since 2008, and a practising dance teacher since 1986. She is also the Artistic Director of Estonian Folklore Ensemble Leigarid. Her research activities are mainly focussed on traditional dance in Estonia. She is active in the process of Estonian Song and Dance Celebrations, a board member of CIOFF-Estonia, a folk dance mentor at Estonian Folk Dance and Folk Music Association, and a council member of the Union of Estonian Dance Education and Dance Artists.

Madli Teller, Choreographer, dance educator and performer, has a BA in Choreography from Tallinn University, MA in Cultural Anthropology & Folk Art from Estonian Academy of Arts and MA from international Erasmus+ program "Choreomundus: Dance Knowledge, Practice, and Heritage". She has been working with known Estonian early music ensembles combining historical (Western European court and social) and contemporary dance. For her first MA she analyzed gender issues in Estonian stage folk dance particularly in the framework of gender specific mass performances from 2006 to 2011. For the Choreomundus program focusing on contemporary methods in dance anthropology and ethnochoreology Madli researched how couple turning was experienced in Estonian traditional improvisational dances.
Madli has been continuously teaching dance to both amateurs as well as professionals from ages 6 to 60 – mainly dance creation and improvisation for children; contemporary, folk, historical and jazz dance and composition for teenagers and adults. She has been choreographing for dance studios, choirs, music shows and theatre productions. While working at student dance theatre Tee Kuubis from 2005 to 2014 as one of artistic directors and main organizers, her projects dealt with cultural history and arts using role play and methods from informal education. Her additional training in historical dance, street performance and youth work has taken place in Finland, Turkey, Italy, France, England and Romania.

Physical Cinema
by David Yoken

A Brief Documentation of the NORDPLUS ECA Network’s ”Physical Cinema” intensive course. A NORDPLUS ECA Network course was held in the Dance program at the Turku Arts Academy.  This course was primarily created for dance students introducing them to embodied film techniques. A video documentation was made of the workshop course led by Lithuanian choreographer, Agnija Seiko and Theatre/Film Director Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė.  In the limited contact time the students had with these two mentors, they explored different approaches and techniques and ways they could approach dance and film using simple mobile devices and editing techniques.
Brief discussion focused on ways students can use their mobile devices in the dance pedagogy “field practice”.

David Yoken has been working as a musician, composer and teacher with dance and choreographers for over 40 years.  David has collaborated as a composer with many recognized choreographers including Carolyn Carlson, Laura Dean, Arja Raatikainen, Ari Tenhula, and Susan Quinn. As a percussionist, he has performed the works of Iannis Xenakis, Vinko Globokar, John Cage, Steve Reich, and many others. He has lectured in many institutions on interdisciplinary arts education. David is also the founder of the NORDPLUS supported Explorations and Collaborations in the Arts / The ECA Network. He is the Senior Music Lecturer, Faculty of Performing Arts, Arts Academy, Turku University of Applied Sciences, Turku, Finland.

Screen Dance 2
by Clara Björck

In my presentation, I will show a short dance-film that some of my students did at the end of a dance training course in Jazz dance.  This was made during a very limited amount of time and with very simple equipment (mobile-camera and the students own editing-programs). This was one of the lasts part of the practical research, revolving around musicality and movement, which had been a big part of the course.
The dance-film project was a pedagogical collaboration between me and musician Sebastian Printz and resulted in a screening followed by a short discussion about their work with the other students in the group.
During my presentation, I will explain further what our idea with this short project was and how that can be linked to the seminars focus. I hope that it can add something to the discussion on how new media and technology can provide new ways of deepening knowledge and be used in creative ways in dance training.

Clara Björck Is a dance pedagogue and dancer who is currently working as an assistant lecturer in Jazz dance at the school of dance and circus in Stockholm. She is interested in jazz dance because of its musicality and wants to explore how it can grow artistically.

Exploring neurochoreography possibilities in the BrainDance performance "Demultiplexia"
By Aleksander Väljamäe, Anastasiia Väljamäe, Renee Nõmmik, Tiina Ollesk and Yury Didevich

Availability of new wearable neuroimaging tools such as Emotive, Enobio or gtec Nautilus allow using these technologies in real life situations, including theatre performances. Monitoring brain signals as EEG provide actors or dancers with new, additional communication channel that can be used for additional expressiveness. In the framework of EU BrainHack several art-science collaborations has been explored in the form of spinal projects that are followed by project partners, one of them being BrainDance (Valjamae  et al., 2017).  In the work on the "Demultiplexia" performance we have two dancers that are connected via wearable 8-channel EEG headsets (Nautilus) to a neurocinematic system. In such system audio-visual material, "messages", are interactively assembled based on the reactions from the dancers. In other words, dancers communicate between each other in a pseudotelepathic way. Wearable headsets are used to detect several psychosomatic states that dancers chose using Brain-Computer-Interface technology. In addition, indexes of emotional valence (pleasant/unpleasant) and arousal, and motion index are also used as a communication features.

 In this talk we would like to tell about the path of our work. At the beginning we thought about following Laban Movement Analysis (LMA) as in Cruz-Garza et al. (2014). However, LMA appeared to be too abstract and descriptive from dancers' subjective perception of the dance. Next, we explored the option to rely on the emotional memories of the dancers. This became difficult since any memory would "wear out" after several rehearsals, not to mention ethical considerations and the danger of emotional burning out. Therefore we came to the notion of psychosomatic states - a mixture of bodily sensations and underlying feelings, like feeling of loneliness or uninhibited expressions. We would like to share our observations and experience from working on Demultiplexia performance during May-September 2017. Demuliplexia has been shown for the first time in Brussels, at Bozar Electronic Arts Festival 2017 on September 14th. 

Renee Nõmmik is one of Fine5 Dance Theatre founding members, created 1992, where he still works as choreographer. He also teaches dance composition /analyses at Tallinn University BFM choreography curricula since 1998. After graduating Tallinn University Renee has studied at various courses and masterclasses like ADF, DTW and Movement Research in USA. Renee has lead masterclasses at Tallinn University, Fine5 Dance Theatre, at International dance festivals in Russia, Belorus, Poland, Sweden, Canada, USA. Since 2010 Rene started his doctorate studies at Estonian Music and Drama Academy in Tallinn (theatre research), he is interested in researching what makes the movement meaningful and how meaning is created in dance today. Renee Nõmmik has won prizes for choreography at Vitebsk Intenational Festival of Modern Choreography (IFMC) in 1992, 1993, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2003 and 2010 and his works are named for the festival´s Golden Foundation in 2007. Renee has also won I Prize at Pinerolo Dance Festival (Italy) in 1997. Together with Tiina Ollesk they have choreographed for Fine5 Dance Theatre since 1999 and their creative works have several times been nominated for the best production of the year of Estonian Theatre Union. In 2008 and 2015 they were Laureates for their works „Fases“ and „…and Blue“. With Fine5 DT they have performed in 16 countries around the world. In 2012 Renee was awarded The Gerd Neggo Dance Teacher Stipendium. Renee Nõmmik has also worked with folk dance celebrations - in 2004 and 2006 he was the main choreographer of Baltic States student festival Gaudeamus, in 2009 he worked for Estonian Dance Celebration „The Sea“. Renee has also worked as choreographer in theatre – he has created dances and choreography for the drama performances in Tartu Vanemuine, Rakvere Theatre, Varius Theatre, Russian Theatre in Estonia, Estonian Drama Theatre and Jekaterinburg Contemporary Dance Theatre.

Tiina Ollesk is choreographer, dancer and co-founder of Fine5 Dance Theatre. She holds a Master of Arts Degree as choreographer from Tallinn University. She has been awarded twice (2008&2015) with Estonian Theatre Union Award for dance performance, Ph.Morris Dance Award, choreography awards IFMC Vitebsk. As F5 dance theatre performed in 16 countries.    She has collaborated as dancer as well with Estonian National Drama Theatre, Von Krahli Theatre and as choreographer with Jekaterinburg Contemporary Dance Theatre, Russian Theatre in Estonia. She curates dance programs at Tallinn University and her main subject of interest is somatic approach to movement and improvisation in dance techniques.

Mobile /phone/ composition: Experimental course for dance art students and art management students
By Olga Zhitluhhina & Ramona Galkina

— fast
— creative
—connecting tissue between dance art students and art management students
—a helping tool to try, to taste, to smell, to experience the art of dance
—fast delivery to the audience
The structure of presentation: 1.Introduction , explanation of the method. 2. Short films showing.

Olga Žitluhina (Latvia) is a choreographer, dancer and teacher – the most influential personality in Latvian contemporary dance scene, head of a program of contemporary dance in Latvian Academy of Culture. She has been the artistic director of Olga Zitluhina Dance Company from 1996 to 2012. The company was the only professional contemporary dance group in Latvia for more than decade. Olga’s productions have been performed and she was teaching in China, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Lithuania, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, UK, USA. Since 2006 she is director of international contemporary dance festival “LAIKS DEJOT” in Riga.

Ramona Galkina (Latvia) teaches different dance and movement disciplines at the Latvian Academy of Culture since 2004. She has been a qualified as a certificated Feldenkrais Method® practitioner (Feldenkrais International Training Program, Vienna) since 2004 and is actively taking part in various advanced trainings and workshops. Her teaching provides an ongoing source of inspiration with opportunities to investigate her own practice and sees her teaching nationally and internationally in a variety of settings. As a dance teacher, dancer and choreographer she has worked in a contemporary dance field since 1996 and values the alchemy of collaboration that underpins these various roles.  As a performer and dancer she has worked at Olga Zitluhina Dance Company (1996-2012). Recently as a dancer and choreographer Ramona is working on different projects at the field of dance and theatre.

Performing in a telematic space and arts activism: Conceptualising an eco artistic, intercultural choreographic practice and performance called “Siku Aappoq/Melting Ice” for addressing climate change.
By Birgitte Bauer

Siku Aappoq/Melting Ice is a performative intercultural installation in the meeting between Scandinavian and Greenlandic artists. It has been performed in a telematics space, which means the performative installation was staged at
the Art Museum in Nuuk in front of a live audience, and recorded simultaneously from each side by the two webcams, and transmitted through Skype to the Tórshavn and Copenhagen audiences.
The intention for the project and the experience for the audience and the artists will be addressed in this presentation about telematic encounter and intimacy. In this case how it may provide new aesthetic practices and modes of interaction across geographical distance.
In creating Siku Aappoq the focal point is art activism and the Greenlandic and Scandinavian perspectives of the consequences of the melting ice in relation to global climate change. Bodily experience and knowledge about the climate change have been leading elements in the process and the investigation to make the installation.

Melting Ice; Concept and choreographer: Birgitte Buer-Nilsen,
Composer and musician: Casten Dahl, Vocal: Aviaja Lumholdt,
Dancers: Thomas Johansen and Alexander Montgomy-Andersen,
Installations artist: Marianne Grønnow,
Light design: Jesper Kongshaug.

Birgitte Bauer-Nilsen, Ph.D., associate professor, choreographer has made intercultural performances in India, Vietnam, China, Tanzania, Greenland and Europe with her dance ensemble, Yggdrasil Dance. Furthermore Birgitte has given workshop/lecture at universities in Europe and Asia. Birgitte is an associate professor at the University of Stavanger, Norway. For more information Yggdrasildance.dk

Making Sense of Technology
by Dave Black

How can computer based technology be integrated into existing movement practices? What is our focus, as artists and educators, when using computer based technology? What common existing knowledge and vocabulary do we have to discuss computer based technology and movement based arts with those outside of our field? These are some of the questions raised during a two week workshop, comprising of students from dance, music and computer engineering educations, held at the Danish National School of Performing Arts in Copenhagen in March 2017. This presentation will share some of the methods, findings and knowledge from this workshop.

David Navndrup Black is a sound artist whose compositions could be described as choreographic. His works involve the movement of audience members and their relation to one another, sound as haptic feedback and the audience’s connection to their environment. He has many years experience composing and performing with choreographers, has a BA in Jazz Studies from Leeds University, studied Musical Accompaniment for Dance at the Danish School for Performing Arts and has a M.Sc. in Sound and Music Computing from Aalborg University.

Perfomers Perspective in a Networked Perfomance
By Indrek Kornel

This presentation will give a glimpse into the mind of a performer who is in the role of performing/choreographing oneself in a networked performance.
What is networked performance? How does it broaden possibilities in creating a performance? How do you perceive a projection of a co-performer?  What could go wrong?
In addition the aim of this presentation is to offer thoughts on what possibilities does a networked performance give and what will it take a way from the performer on a sensory level as a human being.
Presentation is based on the experience gained in the project “Longing for the Impossible for the Moment it is Real (Longing…)”, hosted by the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen – Denmark’s first public networked performance in 2017. Project that was done in collaboration with universities from Copenhagen, Barcelona and London.

Indrek Kornel - mainly working as a Pilates teacher interested in working with movement of the body from a whole body perspective. In 2017 he obtained an MA of choreography from Tallinn University and BA in the same field at 2015. Previously he also acquired a Diploma of Higher Education at 2011 in Information Technology. Also has been working as a web developer / system administrator for the past 7 years. Artistically speaking working with incorporating knowledge from different fields and personal experiences into perfomances . What strives me is my own interest into the human condition. Ongoing themes in artistic work are - how civilization impairs physical fitness, what are the stories that can be read from our bodies.

On Coexistence of Visual Image and Movement in a Dance Performance: Theory and Practice.
by Maria Goltsman, MSc

Being a theorist in visual semiotics and a dance practicioner at the same time, I would like to share my experience on the methods of envolving visual art into movement. During my practice there are several performances created on the idea of fusion of visual art and movement. The starting point for each performance may be very different and vary from as a picture coming alive and opposite, movement becoming a picture. There is as well an experience of involving video into the texture of performance.

Maria Goltsman, being a Master of Science in Semiotics from Tartu University and a graduate of Vanemuine School of Dance and Ballet, has worked as a ballet dancer for Vanemuine Ballet Company in Tartu, Estonia. At the moment Maria is a dancer and choreographer, teaching at Tallinn University Choreography Department, DanceAct Studio and Goltsman Ballet Studio, writing dance articles, facilitating professional dance classes and workshops in Estonia and abroad. In 2007 Maria held a performance-lecture „Body as a Graphic Sign in the Art of Ballet” on the 9th World Congress of the International Association for Semiotic Studies at Helsinki University. As a dancer Maria has worked with such choreographers as Matteo Moles, Hugo Fanari, Teet Kask, Pär Isberg, Mai Murdmaa, Mare Tommingas, Krista Köster, Nele Suisalu and  others. Maria has also worked as a project manager of different projects such as  "Kinethetic Languages" (2006), "Hand Made Communication" (2007) and has been an Estonian Coordinator for kedja project during years 2011-2012. In 2012 Maria founded a freelance dance company „Goltsman Ballet“ and Goltsman Ballet Studio at 2014. As a choreographer Maria has brought to the stage perormances "filling voids" (2009), "Seagull" (2011, 2014), "Breathings" (2011), „Sofi and a Magic Bird“ (2012), Siddhartha“ (2013-2014), „A Boy from the Moon“ (2014-2015), „Human.Animal“ (co-choreographer, 2015), „A Winter Dream in a Summer Castle“ (2015), „Casanova: burning ice“ (2016), „Flying Banana“ (co-choreographer, 2016), „An Adventure in the Magical World of Chess“ (2016).

Ease your stage fright on Virtual Reality
by Kadri Raag

Performance anxiety is a well-known issue for many artists and presenters. It is characterized by fear of social or performance situations in which embarrassment or humiliation might occur. Before and during a performance people often feel anxious and when they also have a lack of confidence, they lose quality and power in their performance..
Limelight is an innovative Virtual Reality software that helps people decrease their performance anxiety and become a better and more fluent presenter in front of an audience.
By combining behavioral therapy principles and practice, the Virtual Neuroscience Lab found the solution in Virtual Reality. It is known that learning by doing is the best possible way to learn new techniques, overcome fears, and improve skills. So by practicing in a realistic virtual environment, people can actually increase their public performance abilities.
The results of our studies revealed that perormance anxiety had decreased significantly after 3 training sessions in Limelight. Though Limelight is designed for the context of public speaking, it might be customized for different artistic settings as well.

Kadri Raag has a master's degree in psychology from University of Tartu. She studied the mechanisms of how Virtual Reality helps people with public speaking anxiety. She is also manager and owner in Psychobus - company that popularize psychology as a branch of science. She is also a psychologist at a local school and a volunteer e-counselor at Lahendus.net

Responsive Body/ Responsive Space
by Külli Roosna & Kenneth Flak

The purpose of the lecture performance is to demonstrate choreographic and compositional techniques and strategies for the integration of sound and movement, using Open Source software and movement sensors. We have chosen to work in a hybrid format between a performance and a traditional lecture to allow the participants to experience the effect of these strategies, as well as to understand the principles at work. In addition there will also be an opening for direct exchange of questions and observations.
We draw on ideas from our previous choreographic works (Blood Music, Wild Places : : Mountain and Fracture), as well as newer developments that will form part of our future works. These strategies have evolved over time as responses to artistic problems specific to the different pieces. The underlying issue that we seek to adress is connectedness: What are the optimal ways of creating a responsive space, where performers and technical elements respond directly to each other in real time?
Every medium has its own opportunities and limitations, and will to a certain extent determine the possible outcomes of an artistic process. In the lecture performance we explore how to use technology to express ideas, as well as providing inspiration for new ways of thinking about dance performance.

Külli Roosna,
born 1981, is an Estonian dancer, choreographer and teacher. She graduated Tallinn University in 2005 as a choreographer/dancer and continued her studies in Rotterdam Dance Academy in the Netherlands, obtaining her second bachelor degree in 2007. In 2013 she obtained an MA of choreography at Tallinn University. She has worked with international choreographers Stian Danielsen, Karen Foss, Kari Hoaas, Cid Perlman, Richard Siegal, Dylan Newcomb, Fine5 Dance Theater, and many others. In 2010 her solo performance Circle Through was awarded the First Prize at the International Festival of Modern Choreography in Vitebsk, Belarus. She is the recipient of the 2017 Pärnu City Creative Stipendium. Her teaching and performing has brought her to festivals, universities and theaters in Estonia, Norway, The Netherlands, Poland, Jordan, India, Japan, Ukraine, Hungary, Czech Republic, Sweden, Germany, France, Russia, Finland, Lithuania, Belarus, and South Korea. In 2014-15 she was board member of Estonian Dance Artist Union and head of its Stipendium commission.

Kenneth Flak,
born 1975, is a dancer, choreographer, composer and teacher. He has performed in the works of André Gingras, Dansdesign, Richard Siegal, Kari Hoaas, Preeti Vasudevan, Karen Foss, Stian Danielsen and many others. He is educated at the National Academy of Dramatic Arts in Norway and the Amsterdam Arts School in the Netherlands. In 2007 he received a Bessie Performer’s Award in New York for his interpretation of Gingras’ solo CYP17. In 2010 he was nominated for the BNG Award in Amsterdam for Of Gods and Driftwood. He received the Norwegian Government Grant for Young Artists 2004 and 2008-9, as well as its Working Grant for 2014-16. Flak is a guest teacher at universities and professional workshops around the world. A self-taught composer and interactive systems programmer, he creates music for his own and others’ choreographies and dance films. He is currently chairman of the expert advisory group for the Nordic-Baltic Mobility Programme for Culture 2015-2017.