Joe Tornabene & Thalia Ditsa

Soma at play- Embodied acts: moving the mind, sounding the body – An embodied performance lab for movers and musicians.

2nd Week - 3 hours/day

This workshop is about deepening improvisational practices and discovering new directions to work with and through embodiment.
Musicians and body-based performers (dancers, actors, etc.) will, through deep sensing processes, research and manifest ways of collaboration.
Our common starting point will be the body, the senses, the lived experience. How could we develop new ways of interacting and composing through embodiment and empathy, sensing moments of life process? How is a dancer moving from his bones? How is a musician playing from her bones? How do they both meet and engage creatively into each other's process?
We will build our common language by experiencing different body systems through experiential anatomy, authentic sounding, contact, voice and movement in unity. Through explorations and scores concerning space, time, memory and relational dynamics we will proceed to group compositional units starting from personal explorations.
Methodology we will work on can be used in choreographic, theatrical and musical processes.
The workshop is open to professional and experienced amateurs, students and practitioners of performing arts (dancers, actors, choreographers, directors, etc.) and musicians.
With the completion of the workshop we will present our resulting work to a live audience.

Joe Tornabene and Thalia Ditsa met in 2006, when Thalia was training with Joe in his Sound-Balancing Year-Long Training. They were drawn to work together by their shared passion for performance and explorations related to new ways to develop and expand dramaturgy and improvisation through embodiment for dance, theatre and music. For the past two years, they have been working together on leading embodied performance workshops and exchanging ideas, thoughts and research. A workshop they co-directed in Crete in 2015 was featured in Joe’s article in the journal Improfil, Berlin, May 2016.

Thalia Ditsa

Thalia was born in the U.K in 1978. She grew up in Crete, Greece. Dance has been a decisive experience through her early years, affecting her thoughts and imagination. She originally studied Physics and moved on to study choreography in the UK (Dartington College of Arts). She has trained as a Pilates and Yoga instructor in Athens. She has worked as a dancer, choreographer and movement instructor in many artistic projects, in theater and dance. Recently she completed postgraduate studies in Political Science and Sociology at University of Athens. She then participated in an educational project named ' Democratic Education' promoting values and praxis of democracy through Greek schools.
The experience of Butoh has been a strong influence to her. She has studied for many years with dancer and choreographer Sumako Koseki -with which she has also performed in a number of occasions and managed the productions of several performances and workshops in Athens.
Thalia has trained in Body-Mind Centering, and other embodied practices such as Feldenkrais, Klein technique, Butoh, Franklin Method, Sound Balancing, improvisation and physical theater.
She has been collaborating with musician- performer Joe Tornabene for the past two years into researching embodied performance practices crossing the field of dance, theater and sound.
She is seeking to create spaces where experience becomes the raw material for rethinking and evolving, in educational, artistic and personal growth directions.
She has been teaching workshops and classes of creative movement, improvisation, meditation and movement for more than 10 years in Athens and Crete.

Joe Tornabene USA/France

Award winning multimedia musician, stage and film actor and sound designer, Joe Tornabene has been sound designing, performing, composing, and exploring performance practice for music, dance and theatre for over 40 years. He has been researching the dynamics and creative possibilities of improvisation and embodied performance practice in multimedia contexts in the USA and Europe. He has taught experiential workshops concerned with the relationships of Performance, embodiment, movement, music, sound, and improvisation in major dance, theatre and music academies in 10 countries.
He has taught at the American Dance Festival, the Bates Dance Festival and American College Dance Festival conferences. He has taught sound design workshops at the Institut Supérieur des Techniques Du Spectacle, Avignon, France. Two of his sound designs have been placed in the permanent collection of the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts in New York.
Joe taught at The School for New Dance Development (SNDO), Amsterdam, from September 1994 until June 1995. He was Director of Sound for the Cloitre des Celestins Theatre at the 50th Festival d’Avignon, 1996. He is a former officer of the International Guild of Musicians in Dance and for five years was the Music Director and Adjunct Professor of Music for Dance for the Department of Dance and Choreography of Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, USA.
Published articles about Joe’s teaching and performance have appeared in numerous international journals in three languages – including the prestigious American journal Contact Quarterly.
In Greece, he has taught in various venues including Nellie Karra’s Advanced School of Dramatic Arts, APXH, Deree College, Kinetiras Dance Theatre, Synergio Technon.
He has worked extensively with the award-winning dance company Lathos Kinisi directed by Konstantin Mihos, and with the handicapped dance company Dagipoli. He was also an actor with Theatro Technis (The Art Theatre of Greece).
He was nominated for the Best Supporting Actor Award at the 46th Thessaloniki International Film Festival (Greece) 2005 for his role in Kyriakos Katzourakis’ film, Sweet Memory.
Joe Tornabene currently lives in France, continuing his performing and teaching in various countries and venues (Greece, France, Germany).