Let’s meet Martina Malvasi, a member of the White Cloud Opera since 2011. Trained at the Laban Centre of London, she is now also a Gyrokinesis and Gyrotonic trainer.
How did you get from dance to Gyrotonic?
It's a passage that occurred twice, in two different phases of my life. The first time I was about sixteen, my dance teacher advised me to flank Gyrotonic training alongside my dance lessons, since my muscles were developing a lot in terms of power, but little in elasticity and elongation. After a few lessons I could already feel new sensations, the movements were much deeper, I had a lot more control and balance, as well as an improved elasticity and awareness of the depth and the origin of a movement.
The return from dance to Gyrotonic took place again a few years later, when following a spine injury, I had to re-train my body into the right posture, strengthen it and above all I had to regain confidence and lose the fear of feeling pain again. That's when I really learned how listen to my body.
Tell me about your experience with the White Cloud Opera?
I had recently returned from London, and decided to pursue my career in Gyrotonic and become a trainer but, despite great improvements, however, I lived in fear that the back injury could come back to bite. Thanks to White Cloud Opera, to the people who have welcomed and supported me in this project, I went back to dance without the fear of past pain and I came to appreciate the freedom of movement that a conscious body can achieve.
Horvath is the inventor of the Gyrotonic, Gagliardi the one who made this method famous in Italy. How was it to meet with them?
I met Pietro for the first time when I was sixteen and I was immediately struck by the charisma of the maestro and his ability to "read" bodies and people, including me. He is able to capture the defensive structures that a body assumes, and find the key to open them and investigate. He taught me the importance of learning to notice and comprehend the intelligence of the body and the truth of the movement, to be able to wait, listen and respect the body.
Horvath was a surprise for me, it's like being next to pure emotion, a great and sincere energy ready to welcome those who seek it. If he is in the room he can be perceived with your eyes closed.
What emotions is this ‘Bolero’ on which you are working on passing down to you?
To work with Horvath is certainly a great privilege, the advice he gives as well as the words he chooses are able to guide the body until it reaches limits that seemed far more remote. He manages to make everything simple and clear. I really appreciate the heterogeneity of the group, we come from very different paths but all united in the common language of the Gyrotonic and each of us in the "Bolero" are able to express our own peculiarities.
If you had to define the Gyrotonic in one word, which one would that be?
I believe that "awareness" is a word that can help define Gyrotonic; awareness of the body, the movement, the possibilities, and awareness of yourself. It 'a workout that puts you in front of the most real body sensations, guides you and takes you into a deep inner search of your own self.
The White Cloud Opera in preparation for its next show, presents its dancers.
The first is FRANCO CORSI. Originally fromCarrara, has in its curriculum important experiences with major companies among which we mention one in particular, the Ensemble of Micha van Hoecke. He also trained in Paris, Brussels, New York and the Tanztheatre Wuppertal with Pina Bausch. A dancer at heart, over the years he has also proved himself as a choreographer, winning numerous awards.
From January 2016 he is with the White Cloud Opera working on the next production, "Bolero" which will be choreographed by Juliu Horvath. We met him at the end of a rehearsal.
You danced on several occasions and with different companies, how do you feel about this new experience with the White Cloud Opera?
In my career I have had the opportunity to be part of major dance companies both in Italy and abroad, I danced the classical repertoire and the contemporary one as well, finding myself working with this company, for such an important project is for me a new opportunity for artistic growth! This 'Bolero' choreographed by Horvath, is a show of unique value: different, full of meaning, a single act that encompasses many different paintings where we artists can express the best of our abilities both as dancers and as people. 'Bolero' is a crescendo of emotions, I personally participate in a few particular scenarios, at the beginning I live in dimension of meditation (Lotus Flower) in which the living being seeks to rise spiritually toward the Divine, in the second half I dance a two-step which figuratively describes two entities, two spirits, like ‘elves in the woods' playing and discovering each other and, with the advent of a higher entity, they become a trio, full of emotional pathos. In this second part of the show Master Horvath wanted to leave us free to experiment, and see what True, Authentic, and Beautiful performance we’d bring to life ".
If you had to describe the work you're doing with the White Cloud Opera, how would you describe it?
I have the feeling of living like the dancers of the last century who studied every day with Martha Graham. I feel 'privileged'. There is great harmony in the company created by Pietro Gagliardi and this is very exciting. Trying all together I came to understand many things about myself I did not know, both physically and spiritually!
The word Gyrotonic, what does it mean for you?
Gyrotonic for me means first psychophysical well-being. This technique has helped me recovered from a bad shoulder at the end of a long tour abroad. I have to thank this technique and the person who has introduced me to it (Stefano Capitani, another dancer WCO) if now I have the tools that allow me to explore new horizons and achieve new goals!