Douglas Scott has definitley left his mark in the performance art arena, and continues to do so through Full Radius Dance. Full Radius Dance offers outreach programs, performances, masterclasses and workshops for all to enjoy and experience. Bang! got the chance to pick Scott's brain, which yielded quite enlightened responses. Be sure to catch Touch! at 7 stages theater.
BANG! The arts have always been a great apparatus to connect people while highlighting experiences intrinsic to individuals. How do you think dance, in general, facilitates this transaction?
Douglas Scott I’ll answer by providing two quotes from modern dance pioneer Martha Graham: “Nothing is more revealing than movement" and “Dance is the hidden language of the soul of the body.”We may not share the same language, same culture, same beliefs, but we all move.
BANG! Have the dancers included in the performances had prior dancing experience or does Full Radius Dance insert newcomers to the performance art arena?
Douglas Scott For the dancers without disabilities, each bring a professional level of dance technique, honed from years of study, to the company. Dancers with disabilities have far less - practically none - options for training prior to joining Full Radius Dance. Successful auditionees are those who exhibit good body awareness and, if used, chair control. We do extensive training and rehearsals involving all the dancers, both with and without disabilities. Our longest tenured dancer joined Full Radius Dance in 2004; our two newest dancers joined in August of 2012.
BANG! You have over twenty years of experience with dance companies. What spurred your passion about dance, performance art and dance companies?
Douglas Scott My passion for dance, performance art and dance companies all springs from a deep love of movement. As a child, I was in constant stream of motion, running, climbing trees, using the foot board of my bed as a tightrope, etc. I grew up in a small town in southeastern KY and the formal study of dance was not an option. I discovered dance when I left home for college and haven't looked back since!
BANG! Could you elaborate on the outreach programs? What are the goals for your dancers and the audience?
Douglas Scott We have a deep commitment to education and outreach and are dedicated to bringing a unique artistic experience to schools, senior centers and other under-served groups on a regular basis. This programs are tailored to the particular population and may involve a performance by the company, instruction in physically integrated dance technique and a question and answer period. Our goal is to provide the audience a high quality, unforgettable glimpse into the work of Full Radius Dance.
We also acknowledge that whenever and wherever Full Radius Dance takes the stage, we are making a statement for inclusion and acceptance of persons with disabilities in society. This is never our intent (great art is), but we acknowledge the fact we are art for social change as well.
BANG! Given your extreme passion for the arts, what is your optimum goal for the impact of Full Radius Dance as an art director?
Douglas Scott We want our work to enlighten, excite and create a very personal reaction for the viewer.
BANG! How does physically integrated dance lend itself to different creative options in regards to choreography?
Douglas Scott In numerous ways, probably the most striking is that some of the dancers use wheelchairs as their primary means of locomotion. We sometimes view the wheelchair as an extension of the dancers' bodies; other times, we make the conscious choice that the wheelchair is a prop, as when we remove the wheel, or the dancer slides out the chair and on to the floor.
BANG! Touch examines the science, emotion, and memory synonymous with the sensation, a feeling you miss now that you’ve stepped down from active performance. How are you going to explore the dichotomy between missing the performance aspect of your life through an actual on stage piece, being that the inspiration is derived from missing that very thing?
Douglas Scott Although the origin of Touch can be found in the emotions surrounding my stepping away from active performance, the end result is not informed by these feelings. This was just a starting point. When I came to the realization I was missing the physical contact of dancing, it made me curious as to why. Why did I miss touching and being touched? Why and how does a body respond to touch? This lead me to create section one, Science of Touch. From there it seemed natural for me to explore how touch can trigger emotion in section two, Emotion of Touch, and in the power that lies with touch in section three, Memory of Touch.
BANG!- Was it difficult to facilitate a performance inspired by a personal revelation you had due to the nature of a collection of other people who haven’t necessarily experienced the same thing expressing it?
Douglas Scott No, not at all. My pieces often spring from a deeply personal place which I may or may not share with the artists. It is the journey from original idea to completed dance work in which I’m most interested, in how the creative process shapes and refines the concept.
Expressive and analytical, Douglas and respectively Full Radius Dance deliver an experience guaranteed to move you on a personal level, and on an exalted plane of appreciation for the beauty in life and the talents vested in it.
Touch plays at 7stages in the heart of Little Five Points Friday January 18th at 8pm and Saturday January 19th at 2pm & 8pm. For tickets please visit: www.fullradiusdance.org