Bainbridge-Cohen, Bonnie. Sensing, Feeling, and Action: The Experiential Anatomy of
Body-Mind Centering. Northampton, MA. Contact Editions. 1993.
This is a collection of articles from Body-Mind Centering originator, Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen. The articles constitute Bainbrdge-Cohen’s contributions to the Contact Quarterly journal between 1980 and 2007. It contains essays, interviews, and excercises on subjects including embryology and developmental patterns, the effect of organ tone on perception and will, musculo-skeletal illustrations of efficiency, and the autonomic nervous system. Some article titles include: Sensing, Feeling and Action; Perceiving and Action; The Action of Perceiving; The Alphabet of Movement; The Training Problems of the Dance; The Dancer's Warmup; The Mechanics of Vocal Expressions; and The Fluids and the Organs.
Bonnie’s work has greatly influenced the contact improv world from early on by her influence on early contact pioneer Nancy Stark Smith. The tools she offers in understanding the different systems of the body and how they might be addressed through different kinds of touch or awareness are a deeply effective platform to move from when cultivating the listening and perceptive skills of contact improv. Further, the way her practices effect the nervous system offer a depth of presence that translates to the stage for performers of any discipline. This book is valuable in its straddling of some of the theory and practice that go into this work.
Brennan, Barbara Ann, Light Emerging: The Journey of Personal Healing. New York,
NY: Bantam Books. 1993. Print.
This volume is a classic in the field of subtle energy. The maps it offers of subtle energy were useful in our exploration of Contact Improv and subtle energetics. They are maps that my collaborator Annalisa Adelberg uses in her work at The Luminous Body School of Energy Medicine.
Brook, Annie. From Conception to Crawling: Foundations for Developmental.
Boulder, CO: Smart Body Books. 2010
Annie's work on BMC developmental movement patterns are a great compliment to a CI practice. Developing support and expression of our early reflexes invites healthy tone and responsiveness into the dance.
Ethridge, Pat, Gill Wright Miller and Kate Tarlow Morgan(Eds.). Exploring Body-Mind
Centering:An anthology of experience and method. Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic
Books. 2011. Print.
As mentioned above, practice in BMC and other somatic practices brings more resource to a Contact practice.
Hennessy, Kieth. The Experiment Called Contact Improvisation. Found SF. 20 April
Part of a larger historical exploration Hennessy is doing looking at the history of Contact Improvisation without the emphasis on the usual personalities credited with the development, but with a focus on the many smaller cultural and individual contributions that have formed it.
Keough, Martin. The Art of Waiting: Essays on Contact Improvisation. North Easton,
MA: Self Published. 2001. Print.
Keough is a long time teacher of Contact Improvisation. His writings are poetic and insightful. They cover historical insights, images for dancing, story-telling, and more. They are less of an academic report and more of a fire-side talk.
Novak, Cynthia J. Sharing the Dance: Contact Improv and American Culture.
Madison, WI: The University of Wisconsin Press. 1990. Print.
This fascinating academic writing goes in-depth into the socio-political and cultural forces that set the ground for and guided the development of Contact Improvisation. It goes into historical context, sexuality and gender roles, concepts of social hierarchy, aesthetics and more. It allows even the most advanced dancer insight into the relevance and impact of what he or she is practicing.
Olsen, Andrea. Body & Earth: An Experiential Guide. Middlebury, VT. Middlebury
College Press, 2002. Print.
This experiential textbook explores systems of the body, aspects of geology, and perception through theory, stories, and embodied practices. It offers excercises and anecdotes that remind us we are from the Earth and of the earth. By seamlessly combining science, meditation, visualization, and creative expression Olsen gives tools that amplify one’s experience of place and their ability to skillfully interact with it. This book is appropriate whether you’re a site-specific art maker or just a human looking to be more at home in out two primary homes… Body and Earth.
Smith, Nancy Stark. Contact Improv Sourcebook. Northampton, MA: Contact
Editions. 1997. Print.
The Sourcebook contains selected articles from the Contact Quarterly journals published between 1975 and 1993. By flipping through the pages of these variously poetic, technical, and socio-cultural reflections on this dynamically developing form, the readers gets a sense of the range of contributions participants around the world have made to the questions catalyzed by CI practice. They are also able to get a sense of how these questions have changed over time. This book, and Contact Quarterly in general, call up a clear sense of an alive and immediate community creating the dialogue and exchange that becomes Contact culture.
Smith, Nancy Stark. Contact Quarterly. Northampton, MA: Contact Quarterly
Fall 1980. Volume 6 Number 1.
Winter 1981. Volume 6 Number 2. Focus on Perception.
Fall 1982. Volume 8 Number 1.
Fall 1983. Volume 9 Number 1. Children's Issue.
Fall 1990. Volume 15 Number 3.
Winter/Spring 2004. Volume 29 Number 1.
Winter/Spring 2006. Volume 31 Number 1. Found on the Web.
Summer/Fall 2007. Volume 32 Number 2.
And many more...