Joan Skinner

Joan Skinner is a seminal figure in international dance and performance. An American choreographer, teacher, improvisation pioneer and former dancer with the Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham companies, Joan Skinner is now an esteemed dance elder and Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington. Joan Skinner developed and refined Skinner Releasing Technique over five decades into a comprehensive training system that has radically influenced dance performance, creation and education across the world. Skinner Releasing Technique (SRT) is an influential and rigours approach to movement evolved from the principle that releasing tension and habitual holding patterns enables greater freedom, power and articulation. At times inward and detailed, oftentimes highly dynamic, this challenging and disciplined approach uses anatomical and poetic imagery, as well as hands-on partner studies. It facilitates the creative exploration of technical principles such as multi-directional alignment, suspension, suppleness, readiness and economy. ‘This technique is a system of kinesthetic training that refines the perception and performance of movement. Images are given which are metaphors of kinesthetic experience of technical principles. The poetic imagery kindles the imagination, thereby integrating technique with creative process' Joan Skinner, 2005