La Serenissima – eyes on skin

A dancer perceives space through her body. It is as if the skin had eyes to all directions. One of the most beautiful exercises imaginable is that of “walking and stopping in unison”.  It might sound easy, but to get it right demands the highest level of focus and concentration as well as full trust in your peers. I cannot stop marveling at the artistic quality of our international TOBBA13 students on Porvoo Campus. They are studying to become tourism professionals, yet they could at any time become members of Campus Dance Theater if there existed one. Who knows, maybe one day there will be a practicing dance group on Porvoo Campus. With the speed art integration into business studies have developed during this academic year, this is no utopia anymore, but altogether a possible scenario! Any self-respecting dance company would be known by its acronym: NYCB for New York City Ballet, NDT for Nederlands Dans Theater and ABT for American Ballet Theater. How about CDT? Campus Dance Theater – sounds feasible, doesn´t it?

Imagine a foggy day in historical Venice in February.  You cannot see many steps ahead of you. Dark shapes are passing you in the narrow alleys and on the piazzas. Every now and then you are stopping. The other shapes stop as well. Your skin is sensing the dampness in the air.

With these instructions our students set out to walk into the fog.  The stark lights were turned off and on a bleak Monday afternoon in February an ordinary classroom on Porvoo Campus was gradually transformed into La Serenissima. This magic transformation was possible due to the focus and imaginative capacity of our multi-talented students.  Walking and stopping in total harmony. It was mesmerizing. It was serene. It was like a time machine taking us back to Renaissance Venice.

A student wrote the following after the workshop: “The music, the pictures and the dance really put me in a Renaissance mood and I had the “feeling” of Venice. I have personally been there and the atmosphere was similar.” We got a glimpse of this captured on film, of course it just lifts the curtain a tiny bit, yet one cannot miss the calm and composed presence of the Venetian Princes and Princesses moving slowly in fog.


About Pia Kiviaho-Kallio

Dancing English Teacher holds an MA in English Philology and is a certified dance teacher. She takes interest in introducing dance and movement improvisation into vocational business studies. Dance is a shortcut to embodiment, kinesthetic awareness and efficient team work. Thus, business students benefit from dance and movement studies.
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