(Re)Positioning Site Dance (Book)

Local Acts, Global Perspectives

This book aims to articulate international approaches to the making, performing and theorising of site-based dance. 

Category: Performing Arts


Site-based dance performance and sited movement explorations implicate dance makers, performers and audience members in a number of dialogical processes between body, site and environment. This book aims to articulate international approaches to the making, performing and theorising of site-based dance. Drawing on perspectives from three practitioner-academics based in three distinct world regions – Europe, North America, and Oceania – the authors explore a range of practices that engage with socio-cultural, political, ecological, and economic discourses, and demonstrate how these discourses both frame and inform processes of site dance making as well as shape the ways in which such interventions are conceived and evaluated. Intended for artists, scholars and students, (Re)Positioning Site Dance is an important addition to the theoretical discourse on place and performance in an era of global socio-political and ecological transformation.

Karen Barbour is an Associate Professor in the School of Arts, Te Kura Kete Aronui, at the University of Waikato in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Victoria Hunter is a practitioner-researcher and Reader in Site Dance and Choreography at the University of Chichester, UK.

Melanie Kloetzel is an Associate Professor of Dance at the University of Calgary, Canada, and the Artistic Director of the dance theatre company kloetzel&co.

List of Illustrations

Introduction: (Re)positioning site dance: Local acts, global perspectives

Karen Barbour, Victoria Hunter, Melanie Kloetzel

Section One: Historical lineages and contemporary concerns: Tactics, encounters and contexts

Chapter 1: From recontextualisation to protest: 50 years of site dance practice in North America

Melanie Kloetzel

Chapter 2: Activism, land contestation and place responsiveness

Karen Barbour

Chapter 3: Sited English folk dance as a form of site dance: Heritage, tradition and resistance

Victoria Hunter

Section Two: Practice into theory: Materials, dialogues and affect

Chapter 4: Dancing gardens, Phenomenology and affective practices 

Karen Barbour 

Chapter 5: Material touchstones: Weaving histories through site-specific dance performance

Victoria Hunter

Chapter 6: Lend me an ear: Dialogism and the vocalising site 

Melanie Kloetzel

Section Three: Moving towards the global: Ethics, morality and marginalisation

Chapter 7: Performing parks and squares

Victoria Hunter

Chapter 8: Site-specific dance and environmental ethics: Relational fields in the Anthropocene

Melanie Kloetzel

Chapter 9: Dancing in Foreign places: Practices of place and tropophilia

Karen Barbour




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