Bari Kim is a dance artist, improviser, choreographer and educator. She was born in Seoul, South Korea. She studied French literature (B.A.) at Konkuk University and choreography (M.F.A.) at the Korean National University of Arts. She is a certified Somatic Movement Educator (SME) of Body-Mind Centering® (BMC). She has been dancing contact improvisation since 2001. In this, she has been influenced by many beautiful teachers, such as Nancy Stark Smith, Katie Duck, Thomas Kampe, Peter Pleyer, Julyen Hamilton, Simone Forti, Eszter Gal, Jess Curtis, Daniel Lepkoff, Lisa Nelson, Nina Martin, Mike Vargas, Kurt Koegel, Keith Hennessy, and of course Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen. Her current research is into contact improvisation as a form of constant listening, and into the dynamic physicality of contact improvisation combined with the cellular approach of BMC. She is interested in body writing in the context of improvised dance performance, and in physical poetry through listening. She has been performing and doing collaborative art projects all over the world: South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Canada, Portugal, Spain, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Germany, Slovakia, Hungary and Turkey. In 2008 she founded the improvisation performance group Improad Badac. In 2013 she started the dance artist duo Barinamo with her partner, dancer and visual artist Namo Joo. Today she researches and performs Poong-gyung, a method of her and Namo Joo’s own devising.
Contact improvisation has been Daniel’s primary movement practice since 1986. He has been teaching the form since 1990. His pedagogy is informed by his background as a professional bodyworker, his studies in physiotherapy, osteopathy and somatics, his aikido practice, his experience with various communication tools, and his politics. He is based in Sweden.
Ea Torrado is an independent contemporary dancer, teacher and choreographer from the Philippines. She has 15 years of experience teaching dance and physical theatre, including Daloy Movement, an intuitive and free-form practice developed by her. She is the founder and artistic director of the Manila-based dance theatre group Daloy Dance Company. Daloy, in case you are wondering, means flow in Tagalog. Coming from a classical and contemporary ballet background, Ea’s search for body friendly ways of moving and being has led her, in recent years, to study a wide variety of approaches to dance improvisation and physical theatre, including Viewpoints, as well as yoga and bodywork. Together with Daloy Dance Company she has co-produced a number of dance theatre programmes and festivals, which all engage different communities and utilise movement as a tool for personal and social change. She has toured extensively in the Philippines and abroad and worked with many Filipino and international dance teachers, mentors and choreographers.
Khuyen did breakdance for a few years before falling in love with contact improvisation. He is endlessly curious about the human condition and keen on exploring movement as a way for groups of people to attune, connect and co-create. Khuyen is a joyous recent graduate of Tufts University in Computer Science & Philosophy. Picking up dance along the way from various lovely teachers has been a wonderful gift.
Man Yee Cheung
For Man Yee, contact improvisation is about embodied human connections, thus a miniature of life and laboratory for experimentation; a means of reflection on and discovery of the human experience. Her love affair with contact improvisation started in 2014 in Thailand. Since 2018, she has been sharing her research into and love for contact and movement in fundamentals classes and jams in Dali (Yunnan, China) and as a guest teacher in Chiang Mai (Thailand).
She is also a practitioner & facilitator of holistic healing bodywork and movement meditation, which deeply influences her approach to contact improvisation. She was born in Hong Kong. For fifteen years she was a humanitarian worker and lived in many different parts of the world. Underlying all her endeavours is her belief in and care for the inalienable value of « being human ».
Namo is a dance artist, choreographer, visual artist, educator and life designer. He liked drawing since childhood, and studied painting at Sejong University (B.F.A.) in Seoul, South Korea. He became interested in expressive methods beyond the flat surface, and attracted by the infinite possibilities of performance and contemporary dance. After finishing university, he started working as a professional dancer with several dance companies in Seoul. Following his passionate interest in the body and movement, he studied choreography at Korea National University of Arts (M.F.A.). Namo focuses on visualising space and movement in performance and works as a visual artist as well. He has created choreography and organised workshops related to colour and communication. He is also a certified Somatic Movement Educator (SME) of Body-Mind Centering® (BMC). In recent years, he has been investigating the relationship between solo improvisation, contact improvisation and somatics. He has initiated artistic projects in many different countries: South Korea, Singapore, Canada, the United States, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, and Turkey. In 2013, he started the dance artist duo Barinamo with his partner, dancer/writer Bari Kim. Today he researches and performs Poong-gyung, a method of his and Bari Kim’s own devising, as an ongoing project of Barinamo.
Nitipat Ong Pholchai
Nitipat Ong Pholchai is a physics lecturer and dance artist with an interest in community-based learning. He is the curator and organizer of the art collective Project C in Bangkok, which aims to bridge the gaps between different communities in Thailand and vitalize the local Bangkok experimental art scene. He likes to tailor somatic practices to the needs of different groups, support new multidisciplinary makers with collaborative tools and somatic movement knowledge, and learn together with the people he works with.
His art, deeply rooted in somatic embodiment, tackles issues of consciousness and the limits of human perceptions, fear vs. freedom, the paradoxes of human coexistence in society, compassionate confrontation and negotiation. He approaches these issues through collective movement meditation and dance.
Ong has been actively promoting somatic education and contact improvisation in Thailand since 2014. He has shared his knowledge and creative projects with many different groups in Thailand, ranging from alternative schools and social activist groups, via The Blind Theatre Thailand, to university dance departments. He has also presented his work internationally, and developed artistic collaborations with communities in Malaysia, Bangladesh, India, Iran, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Rosalyn Shih is a mover and educator based in Kunming. She was born in Toronto and grew up in Hong Kong. She studied English literature (B.A.) at Columbia University, where she also started dancing the Lindy Hop and Blues. She moved to Beijing in 2012, and in 2014 founded Beijing Contact Improv with Shuyi Liao, hosting weekly jams and regular classes. In 2017, Rosalyn and Shuyi co-founded Touch Festival, China’s first annual multi-city contact improvisation festival. In February 2019, Rosalyn moved to Kunming, where she works in the international study abroad field. Education remains her main profession. In her spare time, she hosts meditation circles and teaches contact improvisation and swing dancing for fun. Her approach to teaching movement is informed by mindfulness techniques, exploration through the five senses, and Deep Nature Play.
Tu is a dance/movement artist from Vietnam. Originally a fine arts student, he later discovered his interest in dance and movement. Coming from a ballet and contemporary dance background, he developed a particular interest in dance improvisation in general and contact improvisation in particular. In 2017 he founded Contact Improv Hanoi and started teaching and facilitating regular contact improvisation classes and workshops. He sees contact improvisation as a life-long self-awareness practice of homecoming and freedom.
Yuehong Hu (Aluna)
Aluna is an improvisational dancer, body-mind dance workshop facilitator and translator based in Guangzhou, China. After completing her B.A. in psychology in China, she went abroad and dove deeply into the world of dance therapy. Here she experienced the interweaving and integration of two of her main passions, movement and human awareness. In 2011 she graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London, with an M.A. in dance movement psychotherapy. She then returned to China. She encountered contact improvisation in 2012 and was amazed by the freedom and inspiration that could arise from this special form of physical practice. Since then, she has been organising contact improvisation workshops in Guangzhou with various international teachers. In 2017 she started the Guangzhou contact improvisation jam. In 2018 and 2019 she co-hosted Touch Festival, China’s annual multi-city contact improvisation festival. Vipassana meditation and contact improvisation have been her most fundamental and powerful sources of support, inspiration, and growth.
More teacher bios coming soon