Casting a dancer…

When choosing dancers for a new piece, what do you use? I mean, the easier answer is you cast according to each dancer’s technique. But let’s think about two dancers with the same movement style. And two characters completely opposite to each other.
And this is a real problem for me right now, so feedback, more than welcome, is needed!
In this case (and probably in general), we have two options to cast the dancers, according to their personality or according to their appearance.
Amazingly in this case, the decisions to which I arrived after considering these two option are also opposite… One dancer has the personality for one character and the look for the other, and same with the second dancer.
What is more important, then? For the dancer to look exactly as the character? Or for her/him to feel more identified with what (s)he has to do?
I believe that personality really comes accross, specially if you don’t really want dancers to “act”. But obviously appearance is the first thing that audience perceives…


One thought on “Casting a dancer…

  1. I always go with personality, but that’s because of the way I work and the nature of my pieces. What you need to think about is how much of the piece you’re creating is dependent on technique/stylistic look and how much on the characters coming across through the dancers’ personality… It’s the old body-as-person vs. body-as-instrument debate I guess.

    I realise this doesn’t actually answer your question, but ultimately I guess it has to be your decision as choreographer. Let us know what the outcome is!

    x d

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