Kinetic Awareness® is a non-invasive way for you to discover and develop your unique and full range of healthy and sustainable movement.
The Kinetic Awareness®Center is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation dedicated to research, education, and development in the kinetic arts and sciences.
Board of Directors: Elaine Summers† (founder), Chuck Rosenberg (President), Nina D'Abbracci (Secretary), Meg Chang, Ph.D (Treasurer),
Pearl Bowser, Michelle Berne, Robin J. Powell, Ph.D, Jill Green Ph.D, Frances Becker, Ann Law, Thomas Körtvélyessy, Leeny Sack
Congratulations prof. em. Dr. Jill Green for a lifetime achievement award from the Dance Science and Somatics Education Group! After a long and productive career at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, School of Dance Jill received the honors of Professor emerita and can now officially retire. Of course this means that she will be more busy then even before ... Jill is also leading the Education Committee of the Kinetic Awareness® Center which is about to join ISMETA. For this end we are updating the Certification Program ...
On Thursday October 28th, Thomas Körtvélyessy (MCKA) gave a Masterclass Kinetic Awareness® on Zoom Just and only your Neck to ca. 59 students of the ArtEZ Bachelor of Dance, as part of the #BeyondWeek. Warm thanks to Eva Karczag, Shelley Senter, Bettina Neuhaus, Eva Tremel, the director of the program, Aurélie Lever, alumni-participants Patrick Schmatzer and Elie Nassar, Frances Becker (MCKA) ... and all who collaborated to make this memorable first-time event possible!
We are now conducting interviews for the Elaine Summers Legacy Project. How did Elaine and her work influence you? What are your special moments? How are you using Kinetic Awareness® in your own practice?
Still from Walking on the Wall by Elaine Summers, performance: Trisha Brown Dance Company, Whitney Museum 1971
Reproduction with kind permission by the Artistic Estate of Elaine Summers and Trisha Brown Dance Company
While Elaine is at Carnegie Hall (at last!) side by side with Jimi Hendrix & Allen Ginsberg in the exposition Artifacts of Change, through the initiative of the talented Jennifer Eberhardt at Jerome Robbins Dance Division, New York Public Library of the Performing Arts, we are very much looking forward to see Elaine's newly preserved Walking on the Wall in
This presentation of work by Elaine Summers has been conducted in proper consultation with, and the approval of the Artistic Estate of Elaine Summers with thanks to Kinetic Awareness® Center, Inc. Special thanks to the Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
Special thanks to longterm Board-member Pearl Bowser, who generously brought her knowledge and memories of working with Elaine into the preservation process with Trisha Brown Dance Company. They in turn are excelling under Project Archivist Ben Houtman with care and diligence. The preservation has been done with a grant from the Mellon Foundation under the technical direction of Bill Brand, and with facilitation of the Artistic Estate of Elaine Summers by Kinetic Awareness® Center, Inc.
You can also see the film-excerpt at the finally published video recording of Elaine's Memorial at Judson Memorial Church, February 28th, 2015. Click on this link to go directly to the YouTube page where you can also click on the various time-stamps of the many parts of the 2 hour film ...
Thanks to Vincent Mineo, Harriet Bograd, Carman Moore, and everyone at Kinetic Awareness® Center, Inc. for making it possible!
Save The Date: September 16th,
for a coming exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York
Judson Dance Theater: The Work is Never Done
"...the tension between the public and private. How far do you go?"
‐ Dr. James Hillman, Archetypal Psychologist
Therapy as Performance, a new interdisciplinary experimental performance series by acclaimed performance artist Leeny Sack, continues her three-decade body of work, Performance as Medicine.
Sack will perform as the Constant Client with a different Guest Therapist each night.
Each therapist will represent a different therapeutic modality. These unscripted 50-minute experiments in performance, social psychology, and fluid identity will exist in the simultaneous spheres of public performance and private therapy.
Since the passing of our dear teacher, friend, mentor, inspiration, and founder of the Kinetic Awareness® Center, Elaine Summers in 2014, members of the Board of Directors have :
Helped towards publication of her obituary in the New York Times and co-facilitated a memorial for Elaine at Judson Church in New York City, visited by 300+ people on location and live-streamed via internet
Supported research related to Elaine, giving access to her Artistic Estate
Taught classes and gave lectures about Elaine Summers and Kinetic Awareness®
and their influences, a.o. at ArtEZ Dance Academy in the Netherlands
Started A Book for Elaine (read the invitation as a .pdf) where the editors invite submissions of memories of, moments with,thoughts about Elaine Summers,
to collect and celebrate her deep impact on all who had the fortune to meet her
and who continue to create special moments from her influence.
All of this work has been done entirely on a volunteer basis, in collaboration and with mutual support for each other. We welcome you to contribute and be part of this "delicious" movement ...
Please also consider to
online via PayPal, or send a cheque to
Kinetic Awareness® Center, Inc. c/o Charles R. Rosenberg 484 West 43rd Street, #42-A New York, NY 10036
WHAT ARE OUR FURTHER PLANS?
continue to facilitate the legacy of Elaine's artistic Estate, in collaboration with Lincoln Center / New York Public Library and other partnering organisations and individuals
create an overall archival webspace about Elaine and her work
update the website of Kinetic Awareness® Center : make it easier for members to interact and update each other about their activities, finding teachers, etc.
facilitate & sponsor projects by members of the Center, e.g. Therapy as Performance by Certified Master Teacher Leeny Sack (January 2018)
keep working on A Book for Elaine
(first deadline for submissions February 20th, 2018, when Elaine will have been born 93 years ago)
All donations, large and small, will go directly to help growing the fruits
of Elaine's active life, her works, her teachings, and future dancing.
Your contribution can also be acknowledged by official letter; charitable deductions can be claimed under applicable I.R.S. provisions, and be 100% tax-deductible in the U.S.
Thank you very much!
Charles Rosenberg, Nina d'Abracci, Meg Chang, Pearl Bowser, Frances Becker, Michelle Berne,
Jill Green, Thomas Körtvélyessy, Ann Law, Robin Powell, Leeny Sack - Board of Directors
The Board of Directors of
Kinetic Arts & Sciences, Inc. / Kinetic Awareness® Center
proudly announces and presents
the following projects and events:
October 4th, 2017
Elaine Summers Two Girls Downtown Iowa
screened at POOL 17/Dock11, Berlin Germany
thanks to Yoshiko Chuma and the festival organisation, Davidson Gigliotti, Cathy Weis, Jean-Ulrick Désert,
and special thanks to the Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
October 10th, 2017
lecture-demonstration Elaine Summers and Kinetic Awareness®
by board-member and certified Master Teacher (MCKA) Thomas Körtvélyessy
at Beyond . . . . Trisha Brown´s Opal Loop October 9-13, 2017
ArtEZ Dansacademie, Arnhem, Netherlands
thanks to Eva Karczag
Elaine Summers in a performance of her Invitation to Secret Dancers at Solar1 New York City, photo by D. Goldberg with kind permission
call for submissions to A Book For Elaine
celebrating the living legacy of the originator of Kinetic Awareness®
and founder of the Kinetic Awareness® Center, Elaine Summers
coordinated by Board members and certified Master Teachers (MCKA) Michelle Berne and Leeny Sack
Pauline Oliveros 1932-2016
composer, founder of Deep Listening and longtime friend and collaborator with Elaine Summers, creating unforgettable music as a part of, among many others, Crow's Nest, Hidden Forest, and Skytimewebsite
Hans Breder 1935-2017
intermedia artist and professor at Iowa State University
longtime friend and collaborator with Elaine Summers, a.o. for artist-residency leading to the filmdance Two Girls Downtown Iowa and Skydance shown as part of the 2nd Experimental Intermedia Festival. Wikipedia-page
Elaine Summers Judson Fragments
The Board of Directors at Kinetic Awareness® Center, Inc.
and the Estate of Elaine Summers are delighted to announce that
her epochal film Judson Fragments showing footage of an entire era,
is now featured in the exhibition
Warm thanks to long-time supporter of Elaine's work, Tanisha Jones,
Director of the Moving Image at the Jerome Robbins Division/New York Public Library, Lincoln Center,
where the Archive of Elaine Summers is being taken care of.
With deep sadness the Kinetic Awareness® Center announces the passing away of the founder of our practice, Elaine Summers. She died December 27th, 2014, 5.30am at Bellevue Hospital, New York City from the consequences of a fall she suffered at her home a few days before. Our heartfelt condolances go out to Elaine's family.
Elaine's vision and understanding of movement,
which reached beyond the opinions of her time into the present and the future,
her wonderful energy,
her deep wisdom,
her ability to work with the most minute of ways,
her laughter and encouragement to all who have worked with her,
will all be dearly missed.
May her legacy continue to spread and create beautiful moments for all who encounter it.
The members and Board of Directors of the Kinetic Awareness® Center will convene to decide how to continue in the present situation and we will publish the outcome after a longer phase of decision-making. To everyone who supported the Center in the past and the present, our heartfelt thanks and appreciation.
A memorial for Elaine will be held at Judson Memorial Church, 55 Washington Square South in New York City on February 28th, 6-10pm.
We invite and encourage all of her colleagues and students, and those who crossed her path and got inspired by Kinetic Awareness® to write and publish their reminiscences, sending a copy to webmasterkacenter[at]gmail.com or send them by mail to 537 Broadway, 2nd floor, New York NY 10012
Donations towards the memorial, and for establishing her legacy are warmly welcome.
Ellen started working with originator Elaine Summers in the 1970s and has been instrumental in the becoming of the Kinetic Awareness® Center and its Certification Programme. She continues to teach in her home studio in New York City, throughout the U.S. and Europe.
Sign up now for her coming Kinetic Awareness®Intensive
June 27-29, 2014 in New York City
"Kinetic Awareness® is a self-care method
using rubber balls to release muscular and fascial tension.
It's miraculous, fun and effective for anyone !
Come to one day or all three."
Spine, abdomen, psoas, ribs
Shoulders, neck, arms, hands
Hips, thighs, calves and feet
10 am - 5 pm
17 E 16th St #5, New York NY
$120 single day
$340 for all three days
$320 early bird by June 13
email ellen.saltonstall (at) gmail.com
or call +1-212-727-7288
Ellen Saltonstall has over 30 years of experience in the bodywork field. She is the author of the book Kinetic Awareness®: Discovering Your Bodymind (1988). She co-authored two books with Dr. Loren Fishman: Yoga for Arthritis (2008) and Yoga for Osteoporosis (2010). She teaches in her New York studio as well as other studios nationally and internationally. For more information visit www.ellensaltonstall.com
Ten Week Introductory Workshop with Master TeacherJill Green, Ph.D., MCKA
Thursday Evenings, 6-7:30, August 1 - Oct 3
$125.00 for 10 week workshop or $15.00 per class
for information call Jill Green at 336-432-4806
or email jilligreen (at)gmail.com
Kinetic Awareness® is an approach to somatic education that provides an opportunity to explore movement potential and develop movement possibilities. This system of body-mind reeducation focuses on increased movement efficacy and ease through heightened awareness of automatic and conscious movement. It enhances the understanding of the language that the body uses to communicate with ourselves. Because this system uses rubber balls to enhance body awareness and release excess muscular tension KA is often referred to as "the ball work." Balls placed under various parts of the body provide contact with inner sensations, bringing awareness to inefficient patterns and psycho-physical processes.
movement classes and intensives Kinetic Awareness® and dance
by Master Teacher Thomas Körtvélyessy
Damani Leidsman, Sindy Tejeda, Judith van der Made
Judith van der Made, Sindy Tejeda, Damani Leidsman
bridging technique, a comprehensive movement approach
based on Kinetic Awareness® for connecting organic principles of movement with making geometric-oriented shapes such as in European Classical Ballet, Graham Technique, Cunningham Technique and others.
Come and learn with Elaine Summers, the originator of the Ball Work, and our Master Certified Teachers, Ann Law, Nina D'Abbracci, and Thomas Körtvélyessy. The classes include experiential anatomy, the ball work, listening to the language of the body, injury prevention, centering and balancing, keeping your body healthy through understanding the natural movement of all our systems.
The workshop will cover such topics as:
Your fabulous head & neck
Your great shoulders, arms and hands
Understanding your incredible spine
Your amazing pelvis and legs
Your elastic knees and feet that give you power to use gravity and levity
The breath of your life: the respiration system
Your expressive sound
Your viscerae: what are they doing? how do they work
Your total body system - how do they talk to each other
The study of Kinetic Awareness® can be counted for life-experience credits at SUNY Empire State and the Gallatin School at New York University. For more information please contact Dr. Robin Powell at +1-212-727-3059.
Ann has been working extensively during her long-term exploration and study of Kinetic Awareness® For her certification she designed and made arrangements fo special Kinetic Awareness exercise balls with a KA logo printed.
The video below was filmed in New York City, during Ann's visit to Elaine,
and it shows beautifully how one can work with them. Please contact her at annlawdancing(at)gmail.com for purchase inquiry.
An all-encompassing book about Yoga for Arthritis. Comprehensive, clear and direct knowledge - Yoga excercises that relieve pain and develop flexibility for specific problems of arthritis. You can buy it here.
"I highly recommend it. Bravo! "
Ellen Saltonstall also wrote the classic primer on Kinetic Awareness® which is currently out of print.
To place a paid reservation or donate for the re-print please contact Ellen Saltonstall
or call +1-212-727-7288
originator Elaine Summers
"Invitation to Secret Dancers"
Stuyvesant Cove Park / Solar House 1
New York City, 2005
EXPLORE THE LOVE OF A LIFETIME ... YOUR INFINITE WAYS TO MOVE WITHOUT PAIN AND THE WONDERFUL CREATIVE DANCER WITHIN YOU
To make an appointment with Elaine call +1-212-925-0142
(left to right) Master teachers Frances Becker and Alexandra Ogsbury
photography: Paula Court
About Elaine Summers:
originator of Kinetic Awareness® (The Ball Work®)
MA. NYU, MIT (Center for Advanced Visual Studies)
Fellow, Fulbright Scholar
"There are many applications and levels of Summers' Kinetic Awareness work. Most individuals, including those who eventually incorporate Kinetic Awareness into their own work, initially come to study because they have an injury or other problem with their bodies. Training and maintaining the body is the central concern of dancers and the reason why many major dancers in New York have ended up on Summers' floor. KA does not substitute one system of movement for another, but by learning how the body works-physically, physiologically and psychologically---students can reclaim their bodies as their own. --- Trisha Brown believes all dancers should study with Summers because of the sensitivity to the body Summers' training imparts and Summers' ability to analyze error in dance movement.
The Drama Review DANCE/MOVEMENT ISSUE VOL. 24 #4
Kinetic Awareness® in Europe:
Kinetic Awareness® Study Athens started by Barbara Mueller, MCKA, teaching workshops and classes, also in Vienna, Austria. For more information and bio, click here
Master-Class in Odessa by Thomas Körtvélyessy, MCKA
on invitation of cultural NGO KusiCreaVision
click here to read the article about the first KA® class
ever taught in Ukraine.... (in Ukrainian)
INVITATION TO SECRET DANCERS: 5th phase of Kinetic Awareness
KINETIC AWARENESS is a way to discover and understand the dancer that you are and enjoy the chance to dance. Join us by the riverside.
Here are some pictures from the performance. All the wonderful photos below by Jeff Fox, Kenneth Klein, Deborah Goldberg.
Secret dancer with umbrellas
Carla, Maria and Harriet
Tina, Nancy and Harriet
Richard and his umbrella
Meg, Tina and Secret dancers
Marion, Richard and Murphy
Elissa, Meg, Carla and Secret Dancers
all photos (c) 2005 by Jeff Fox, Kenneth Klein, Deborah Goldberg
CEC Stuyvesant Cove presents INVITATION TO SECRET DANCERS, a dance/film performance by Judson Dance Theatre's Elaine Summers.
The performances will be held at the Solar 1, an environmental arts and education center located in Lower Manhattan's Stuyvesant Cove Park. Original sound compositions by Carman Moore and Skyfriends will accompany.
SOLAR 1: 23rd St & the East River
Saturday June 18th (rain dateJune 19th) - 3pm, 5pm & 7pm
Saturday June 25th (rain date June 26th) - 5pm, 7pm & 9pm
Marion Ramirez (25th), Harriet Bograd, Daniel Sklar, Nancy Barber, Tina Erfer, Pearl Bowser, Meg Chang,
Elissa White, Josh Bissett, Laura Quattrocchi, Rob Cook (Australia),Rebecca Loukes (London), Jung Woong Kim,
Kiori Kawai (solo: Goddess of the Sea), Richard Jochum, Leeny Sack
Composer: Carman Moore
Performers: Marianna Rosett, Premik Russell Tubbs
Invitation to Secret Dancers is an improvisational dance choreographed by Elaine Summers which has been performed in many places and countries by many people, including the Karlsplatz, Vienna, Australia, London, Rome, Woodstock, NYC and all over the U.S.A.
Thomas Körtvélyessy in the Netherlands:
In 2004 Thomas Körtvélyessy / Reàl Dance Company performed his version of Invitation to Secret Dancers in Arnhem and Rotterdam, The Netherlands,as part of the ongoing project con·sens·us
performers: Eva Tremel, Thomas Körtvélyessy
guest choreographer and dancer: Meredith Nadler
musician: Pierre Verbeek
curator Rotterdam: Daniela Swarowsky
curator Arnhem: Corien van der Poll
artist-manifestation 'Plein Publiek' Kronenburg shopping center, Arnhem- September 2004
artist-in-residency at ZiM Rotterdam, Netherlands - October 2004
Kinetic Awareness® is a system of body discovery and therapy that calls attention to the simplest components of movement and explores emotional attitudes toward the body. Because one of its special features is the use of graduated rubber balls to enhance body awareness and release excess muscular tension, Kinetic Awareness® is often affectionately referred to as "the ball work".
The complete course of study takes several years and has five parts:
By the end of the first phase, the student has become aware of each part of the body and is able to articulate it. It should be possible to move each part of the body slowly and with little tension.
In the second phase, one becomes aware of total body systems such as breathing, circulation, tension, etc. The student should be able to articulate slowly and with little tension more than one part of the body simultaneously.
At the end of the third phase, the student should be able to change speeds and move extremely slowly through all his/her speeds to the very most rapid.
The fourth phase incorporates the first three phases and adds to them the ability to change tension levels at will, from minimum to maximum tension.
The fifth phase combines the previous four and adds the ability to relate to another person and be aware of them in a performance.
The Kinetic Awareness® Center's present project is, through study and research, to discover and describe the parameters (possibilities and limitations)of the human movement system's ability to maintain health, to implement injury prevention, and to discover the kinds of injuries which can recuperate through movement and by understanding the limitations and the effectiveness of the body's own kinesthetic ability to heal injuries.
Kinetic Awareness® as a system of discovery of the body/mind's integration and understanding of the language of the body is now over 35 years in practice. We have been keeping both experiential and empirical records of the abilities, effectiveness and limitations of the body's movement systems in healing, protecting and maintaining health.
We wish to sustain exchange between other systems of work, study, and research. There are many systems that view through different facets effective ways of understanding the human body's kinesthetic power.
Who originated Kinetic Awareness®?
Kinetic Awareness® was developed by dancer/choreographer Elaine Summers in the 1960's.
Her dance career was interrupted at an early age when she began to show symptoms of osteoarthritis, a potentially crippling disease of the joints. As a result, she became interested in learning how to move without pain so that she could continue dancing. During this period, she studied with Carola Speads, whose system of Physical Re-education evolved from the work of bodywork innovator, Elsa Gindler.
Summers developed a system of body and mind coordination based on listening to and understanding the language of the body. Through experimentation, she evolved the technique of using various sizes of rubber balls to assist in making positive changes in the body.
Kinetic Awareness® as a technique for dance is the basis of her choreography.
She has been honored by many grants and her work has been presented internationally.
After performing and teaching in New York for many years, Summers established the Kinetic Awareness® Center in 1987 to continue her work.
"The work is an everyday living and working tool. You learn to internalize an awareness, an understanding of everything about the inside of your body." —Tony Nunziata, Actor
Who Benefits from Kinetic Awareness®?
dancers, actors, musicians and artists
who wish to increase their technical and expressive range.
educators, psychotherapists and health professionals
who are integrating the kinetic language of the body with the language of the emotions.
kinetic techniques of developing a feeling of well-being through understanding how to
regain energy , lessen and/or eliminate chronic pain.
people who want to heal existing injuries and avoid future ones.
a gentle way to develop coordination, physical self-confidence due to history of abuse,
eating disorders, or addictions
"Spending most of my life as a brain in a jar, I was shocked to discover I had a living, feeling body, glorious and painful. I am no longer willing to ignore it." —Sara Friedman, Writer
Congratulations to Trisha Brown for her elegant new book:
"Dance and Art in Dialogue 1961-2001"Amazon link, Barnes and Noble link
U.S. DANCE AND VISUAL ARTS; COMPOSING STRUCTURE
BY Marianne Goldberg essay pages 29 to 44
Brown released the dancer's "set," a particular tensile way of holding the body in the forties and fifties, which she had learned through studies at Mills and at the Merce Cunningham Studio after she arrived in New York in 1961. Through Alexander and also intensive, long-term study of another emerging form, Kinetic Awareness, founded by the Judson choreographer and filmmaker Elaine Summers, Brown began to initiate movement from very different kinesthetic knowledge.
These newly surfacing somatic ideas offered alternatives to how to hone her body for dancing. She shed the stylized use of her muscles and the tensile alertness through the spine and skin. Focusing instead on subtleties of elegant, relaxed alignment of her spine and limbs, she moved with ease and a spatial clarity that stemmed from innovative inner imagery. Brown looks at home physically in these moves, and a different virtuosity and creativity emerged, grounded in anatomically clear and efficient action. New sensations, perceptions, and energy developed within her body and between body, space, time, and geometry.
These changes became a technical breakthrough for dance in America. They separated many in the sixties and seventies generation from others who stayed with Cunningham or Graham techniques. Brown's in-depth new studies did become major catalysts for creating her own movement. When she formed her company in the early seventies, she chose performers who also reconceived the human structure and the meaning of physical skill.
Published by the Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover, Mass., 2002. Page 30
Photo Credit: Paula Court
Pictured: KA® Teachers and dancers, Carol King, Meg Dellenbaugh, Frances Becker, and Patricia Lenore.
"Summers uses anatomy and kinesiology to help students connect their subjective experiences with objective understanding of physical structure and function… KINETIC AWARENESS should find a place in every body therapist's library and in the classrooms of movement educators…".
-Prof. Martha Myers, book review of "Kinetic Awareness: Discovering Your Body/Mind"
by Ellen Saltonstall, in KINESIOLOGY AND MEDICINE FOR DANCE