A B O U T
Dance and Somatics:
Somanaut (pronounced "so-ma-naught") Dance is where I house my somatic movement dance education and choreographic explorations. For me, the two are inextricably linked processes, which grow from the same soil.
Choreography and Performance Practice:
Brain, meet body; body, meet brain. This place of meeting is the fertile ground from which I grow the work I create as Somanaut Dance. My works begin with these dialogues which balance brain and body, thought and felt explorations, intellectual processes and lived experiences. The result is thoughtful, contemporary work that is process-driven and somatically informed. Through the use of democratic approaches and collaborative co-creation, I honor many bodies and many voices in my process. My dancers’ autonomy is central in the creation of my work; from their lived and felt expressions, I abstract their individual vocabularies. I collage the resulting subtle shifts, layering meaning and movement to create spacious and contemplative landscapes. Within the conceptual frameworks of my dance, I offer inter-relational spaces for regaining play, wellness, and moments of support. I urge my audiences to think and feel simultaneously. In my process, I attempt to kinaesthetically problem-solve, to find our bodies’ answers to our minds’ inquiries. I like to ask the juicy questions, zealously embodying the inquisition, whether the answers exist or not.
Somatic Movement Dance Education:
Somanaut dance is a place to explore the intersection between embodied somatic movement and dance. I am dedicated to free and innovative exploration of the living body through meditative and creative deep, internal listening and movement, and strive to create a sense of greater awareness, spaciousness, support, and positive well-being through movement practices.
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR/FOUNDER: REBECCA WEBER
Becca Weber is always asking questions. Usually, these investigate the places where the body meets the brain--where dance, Somatics, and science intersect. Weber is a PhD candidate at the Centre for Dance Research (Coventry University), working on the Leverhulme Trust funded project ‘In the Dancer’s Mind: Creativity, Novelty and the Imagination.’ Her interdisciplinary doctoral research--combining cognitive psychology and dance studies--examines creativity in Somatics-based contemporary choreographic practices. She currently lectures on the Dance: Urban Practice BA at University of East London.
Weber is a Registered Somatic Movement Educator (ISMETA) and holds an MFA in Dance and a Teaching in Higher Education Certification from Temple University as well as a Master’s degree with Distinction in Dance & Somatic Well-Being from the University of Central Lancashire, where she served as an Associate Lecturer on the BA (Hons) Dance Performance and Teaching programme in courses on pedagogy, composition, and third-year dance technique. She has previously been an Adjunct Professor in Dance at Richard Stockton University and Temple University, where she developed and instructed graduate and undergraduate dance majors in "Dance Science and Somatics," an experiential anatomy and somatics course. Other higher-education courses she has taught include: pedagogy; composition; first-year seminar for undergraduate dance majors; a studio-based introductory technique and dance appreciation course; and various general-education courses for undergraduate non-majors in topics such as: dance appreciation and world cultures, dance and diversity, and socio-cultural trends through dance in film.
As founder and director of Somanaut Dance, her choreography has been presented in Philadelphia, New York, Georgia, Delaware, Canada, and the UK. She has performed for many independent choreographers in Philadelphia, including Eun Jung Choi (DaDa Dance), Katherine Keifer Stark (The Naked Stark), Ellie Goudie-Averill (Stone Depot Dance Lab), Colleen Hooper Performance Projects, Michael T. Roberts, Danielle Greene, Meredith Steinberg, Venus Dance Company, and others, and was a performing member and rehearsal director for INVISIBLE RIVER. Weber was an Artist-in-Residence at Mascher Space Co-op, and her work has been supported by Dance USA, Dance/UP, the World Dance Alliance Americas, Decoda, C-DaRE, Temple University's Boyer College of Music and Dance, Mascher Space Co-Op, The Iron Factory, Women In Motion, Coventry University's Centre for Global Engagement, the Rebecca Skelton Fund, and the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage.
Her research has been published in the Journal of Dance and Somatic Practices; Dance, Movement and Spiritualities; and the anthology, Dance, Somatics and Spiritualities: Contemporary Sacred Narratives, for which she served as co-editor. Her in-press publications include chapters in Multimodal Perspectives in Performing Arts (Routledge) and Dance and the Quality of Life (Springer). She is a co-director for Project Trans(m)it, an Associate Editor for the journal Dance, Movement, and Spiritualities, and Communications Director, Social Media Manager, Editorial Board Member, editor, and writer/critic at thINKingDANCE.net.
You can view Becca's CV here.