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Joe McConnell's blog - disability arts online
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Joe Mc in search of '5 Rhythms' / 2 August 2010

Watercolour image of a man playing an accordion

He can play the Java (gouache) © Joe McConnell 2010

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In the last post, I mentioned the power of music in lifting the vibe and helping you get through when it's difficult to do anything much at all.

Listening to music seems key to what unlocked a lifetime's reticence when it came to making art. But the door had many locks and needed other keys as well: dance and movement.

At the Jules Thorn Recovery Centre, mentioned in my first post of this blog, there was a wonderful session devoted to moving mindfully to music. Some of my mates sniggered when I told them about these sessions. Probably because not having a very elegant body, I would never be associated with a love of dancing. Bollocks.

The two wonderful facilitators of this session, had us listening to some great music - sometimes slow and calming other times funky beats what would make anyone get their ass on the dancefloor - and moving in ways that were right for each of us and our different physicalities. It was the opposite of having to conform to some dance class rules of what was right. In the end, I now spend as much time as I need moving to music. It's another one of those things which seems so simple, yet can be a powerful antidote to the darkest blues.

My experience at Jules Thorn, has made me want to look into a dance and movement practice devised by Gabrielle Roth, called the 5 Ryhthms. I haven't done so yet. But here's a couple of interesting websites for anyone interested.

5Rhythms on Wikipedia

A 5Rhythms site

Keywords: dance,depression,disability art,music,visual art,