The Benesh Noticeboard
Updates on events and news relevant to the Benesh community.
Anna Trévien in Dance Gazette
Anna had the privilege of being included in the June 2020 edition of the RAD publication Dance Gazette, which was guest edited by visionary fashion designer Gareth Pugh. Anna, alongside RAD Artistic Director Gerard Charles and former principal dancer at Birmingham Royal Ballet Chi Cao, was part of the ‘Facing the Future’ feature.
‘The journey of Benesh Movement Notation (BMN) has been enormous […] I can’t predict what will happen in the next decades, but I would love Benesh to be more a part of the ecosystem of dance, and that a wider community will use it in their daily work.’
You can order your copy of the Dance Gazette online here.
Fabien Monrose has created an excellent website, Benesh Links, which brings together various Benesh resources in one place.
Interview with Anna Trévien – People of Theatre
In September 2019, Giuliano Levato from People of Theatre released an interview with Head of Benesh International and Senior Benesh Choreologist at the Royal Ballet, Anna Trévien. This Spotlight on… Dance Notation provides a great introduction to Benesh Movement Notation, and the importance of it. As Giuliano writes, Anna provides a tantalising glimpse of what it seems to be an articulate notation system that is capable to put on paper not only the sequences of movement, but the integrity of the choreographer’s intent.
The video can be viewed on the People of Theatre website.
Thank you Giuliano for featuring Anna in your Spotlight on… series.
Between the Lines: The Art of Choreology – postponed
Due to the current situation around the COVID-19 global pandemic, Benesh International and the Royal Academy of Dance have made the decision to postpone the Benesh International Congress to 2021. Further details of the rescheduled Congress will follow in due course.
Between the lines: The Art of Choreology call for contributions
Benesh International Congress – 22-24 May 2020
To make an application for the 2020 congress, presenters should complete this web-form accompanied by an abstract (200 words max) and a biography (100 words max). This will need to be submitted to the BI Congress committee no later than Monday 16 September 2019.
The Benesh Forum 6-7 April, 2019
The Benesh Forum is a unique weekend for the Benesh community and beyond held at the Royal Academy of Dance in Battersea, London. This event is a learning opportunity catering for everyone at varying levels of Benesh Movement Notation (BMN) practice, from prospective students through to professional choreologists.
The forum is divided into three complementary streams – Benesh Student Forum) (BSF) for BMN students; Introductory Benesh Workshop (IBW) is for people with little of no knowledge of BMN, wanting to find out what it can give to them, and the Benesh Choreologist Seminar (BCS) for Benesh professionals.
Follow the links below to book your place:
Benesh Insights at the ROH
Members win a pair of tickets to a sold out Insights session.
This behind-the-scenes look at Benesh notation will take place at the Royal Opera House on Wednesday 31 October. We’ll be drawing the prize on Monday, so get your entries in now.
To enter, email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, RAD ID and quote ‘Insights’.
Closing date 29 October 8am GMT.
Terms and conditions apply
13-year-old Molly Ross recently asked Benesh International if she could study the Benesh Movement Notation for Ballet (BMN4Ballet) online distance learning course. As the youngest ever applicant, Molly’s wish was granted and she began Unit 1 under her mother’s supervision. Molly did exceptionally well, as the course was not adapted for her in any way.
Molly said, ‘Since I first saw Benesh I have have been fascinated by how it records movement, and loving ballet has made me appreciate how choreography is recorded. When one of my school teachers told me that between 10-14 is the best age to learn a language, I started thinking of learning Benesh as I regard it as a language. When I was suffering from Sever’s Disease earlier this year and couldn’t dance, I started to think of other ways to connect with ballet. That’s when learning Benesh became essential to me and I asked to be enrolled on the course for my 13th birthday!’
Pearl Cynthia Hodson (Nee Armstrong) 1924 – 2018
Pearl was born into a theatrical family in Wales on 13th May 1924. Her parents were travelling actors who performed around Great Britain, settling in London. Training at the Benesh Institute of Choreology, she was one of the first non-ballet dancers to become a Professional Choreologist. For many years she helped provide the master copies for all the Institute’s in-house and external publications in the era when everything had to be inked.
For many years she helped choreographers to record their ballets into Benesh Movement Notation. She also wrote text books for future students to learn BMN. In her 60s, Pearl retired and turned to writing poetry and became a member of the Royal Shakespeare Society.
Benesh International is indebted to the legacy she leaves us.
Join us for Benesh Explored on 16 July, 14:30 – 16:30
As part of a week-long CPD Summer Festival focusing on enhancing a teacher’s expertise in non-syllabus content, Anna Trévien will deliver Benesh Explored, a fun and practical workshop. Whether you are a novice, beginner or advanced Benesh practitioner, you will understand the fundamental principles of Benesh Movement Notation (BMN) by exploring it in a new, fun, exciting and creative manner. During this session, you will learn the basic principal of BMN which will help you read the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus Benesh notes, and you will experience using BMN as a creative and choreographic tool. This workshop is a taster experience of the exciting new series of Benesh Explored workshops currently being trialled for children as young as eight years old.
Don’t miss out, book now.
Further information about the CPD Summer Festival.
Benesh International – CPD Online Course creator
Benesh International is keen to develop online CPD courses for Benesh professionals and graduates. There is an expressed need within the Benesh community for CPD to be an ongoing feature of a Benesh choreologists’ professional development. Currently there are limited CPD opportunities within Benesh and this is something which we wish to address. Therefore we are looking to hire the following:
One freelance staff member full-time over a four week duration (or the equivalent of this workload over several months). The role is to develop 10 x Benesh CPD courses to be delivered online. The staff member would need to create all content for each CPD course, including course outline, course aim and objectives, the presentation of the content of CPD, tasks and guide notes for tutors when applicable. Each course content requires a combination of self taught practice and guided tutorials. All content must be developed with the view that it is for online delivery. The staff member would need to draw upon our Professional Award program material and the Benesh Encyclopaedia for source material.
The fixed fee for the delivery of this work will be £3,540.
Time scale: All work must be completed by the end of October 2018.
Candidate Profile: Proven good knowledge of BMN grammar and vocabulary are essential. Experience in setting course programmes or modules is desired but not essential.
Please send your expressions of interest, including CV, qualifications and highlighting any relevant Benesh experience to Anna Trevien at email@example.com by 30 June 2018.
Join us on 16 Jul 2018 for a two-hour workshop with Anna Trevien. This is a chance for dance teachers curious to learn more about Benesh Movement Notation (BMN). Find out how BMN can become an invaluable teaching tool and help your students develop their creativity. This is a fun and creative introductory workshop which will give you a taster of what a Benesh Explored workshop will be.
Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Patricia Tierney on Using BMN
2017-18 has been varied season for me so far. In the autumn I was reviving David Bintley’s, Still Life at the Penguin Café, and Aladdin along with Denis Bonner for BRB. Then after our regular Nutcracker season in Birmingham, the production was re-imagined for the Royal Albert Hall, which meant that David contributed new production elements and we had additional dancers in the big numbers. It was very challenging time for the company but they did a great job.
Since the New Year, whilst the company were in the throes of Sleeping Beauty, I have had some guesting engagements; in Dresden for Frederick Ashton’s The Dream, Sarasota Ballet for Still Life at the Penguin Café and currently in Salt Lake City with Ballet West for David Bintley’s, The Shakespeare Suite. It is always so interesting to teach a ballet to a completely different company. I find I have to delve deeper to bring out the choreographic intentions, musicality and stylistic details. It can still be good fun though and such a pleasure to see the dancers bring it altogether in performance.
Patrica Tierney is the Benesh choreologist and video archivist at the Birmingham Royal Ballet.
One Day Benesh CPD Workshop in Turkey (15 January 2018)
A report from Canan Kayacik, CPD workshop leader.
The Benesh CPD workshop took place in Hotel Suadiye with 15 participants. We had a nice breakfast buffet followed by lunch and a tea time buffet, all managed by the British Council.
We followed the required CPD power point presentation which addressed the needs of the participants of how to find their way around the scores. We used the timing nicely and had time to go over additional material.
By the end, most attendees were able to read the scores on their own. I was so proud of them! They had learned a lot and left very happy. Some expressed interest in the BMN for Ballet program. I very much enjoyed delivering this course.
A recent article about dance notation in Dance Journal HK, by BMN4Ballet tutor, Iris Tang.
Watch our livestream clip of recent the recent Faculty of Education lecture looking at the life of Benesh Choreologist, Amanda Eyles.