Somatic Practice Short Course at the University of Bedfordshire

Coming in the Spring: Somatic Practice Short Course at the University of Bedfordshire.

There are 2 parts to the course and you can sign up for 1 or both parts!  The course is suitable for graduates, movement professionals, teachers, dance artists, somatic practitioners.


WEDNESDAYS, 7 FEB – 7 MARCH, 2018, 0930-1230PM BEDFORD CAMPUS (5 sessions)

The Feldenkrais Method is a somatic discipline which uses experiential learning to achieve a phycho-phisical awareness of the whole self. Directing attention to internal sensation through exploratory sequences of movement we will question our habits in order to open new possibilities in our physical organization. By respecting the internal logic of the body we will grow from somatic awareness towards working with larger and more complex movement. Awareness of the roots of a movement and the emergence of new possibilities gives us a reinvigorated sense of ownership and pleasure in our solo dancing. From solo dancing we will move into duets using specific movement patterns from Feldenkrais to underpin partner work. The clarity and subtlety of the somatic work will be reflected in how we listen and respond to a partner. This short course is open to post-graduate students and professionals in the fields of dance, performing arts, theatre, movement, somatics, bodywork.

Simonetta is Italian dance artist based in London. She teaches at Trinity Laban, and Goldsmiths University and London Contemporary Dance School. Her work is informed by more than 30 years of dancing, teaching and choreographing. Her choreography has been for dance companies, student pieces, large scale opera, improvised performance, site specific and movement direction for theatre. She taught for more than 20 years in Italy and kept Contact Improvisation alive in Roma for 10 years with her classes and jams. She has been a guest teacher in Germany, Colombia, UK, Norway, Israel, France, Switzerland, Italy, Spain and Taiwan. She obtained the Post Graduate Diploma in Choreography at London Contemporary Dance School, she is qualified teacher of the Feldenkrais Method and she holds the Teacher Certificate of the Royal Academy of Dance. She’s now involved with the UK tour of The Nodines, an interactive dance show for families, created and performed by herself, her daughter and her partner Rick Nodine.

£100 full / £80 students, unemployed, freelance



This workshop will explore the use of touch and tactility in our dancing as CI practitioners and teachers. We will investigate states of mind and body in contexts of touch, contact improvisation and partnering. The workshop will have a dual focus on sensitising our tactile and touching awareness as dancers, and on the pedagogical application of the dynamics of touch when leading others. Specific tools will be offered in the applications of touch for assisting alignment, navigating momentum, and shifting states of energy, mind and body. There will be opportunity for participants to engage discussion and reflection upon the role of touch in their own practice.

There will be a focus on cultivating trust and environments of consent that support our dancing together in enlivened and meaningful ways. Ideas about permission, consent, freedom, risk and letting go will be considered in relation to ethics of self-care, practitioner responsibility and art form development. We will process our questions through dancing, writing, talking, drawing, journaling, more dancing and gathering tools. First person explorations of somatic experience will form the foundation of much of our learning and insights

£60 full /£40 students, unemployed, freelance

This workshop is offered as part of the ‘Touch and Trust’ project, and as part 2 of the Somatic Practice short course.

The workshop is led by Tamara Ashley. Tamara is a dancer, yogi, researcher, teacher and CI practitioner with 20 years of experience. She has been practicing CI since the 1990s and she considers it a foundational practice to her thinking and development as an artist and researcher. She has studied with many leading teachers of the form including Nancy Stark Smith, Andrew Harwood, KJ Holmes, Nina Martin/Lower Left, Janis Claxton and Chris Aiken. In 2017, she co-facilitated the UK contact improvisation teacher’s exchange. She brings a depth of knowledge in somatic and body based applications of touch through her studies in developmental movement, BMC, yoga, pilates and release techniques. She is particularly interested in relationships between mind-body states, focus, intention, energy, environmental change, ecological justice and community building. She recently guest edited a special issue of the Journal of Dance and Somatic Practices and has been working on a project to document the lineages of dance improvisation artists.  In 2017, she co-facilitated and organised the UK Contact Improvisation Teacher’s Exchange, and with colleagues from across the disciplines at UoB, was a nominated as a finalist for the HEA National Collaborative Teaching Award for work on developing curriculum in the context of environmental change.  She holds and MFA and PhD in Dance from Texas Woman’s University and currently leads MA Dance Performance and Choreography at the University of Bedfordshire.

If you book the full course, both parts 1 and 2, then the rate is:

£150 full / £100 students, unemployed, freelance

For booking and further information, email: