In Touch

Marielle Gerke





Marielle is born in Berlin, living in Witzenhausen between Kassel and Göttingen in Germany
since 2010. She discovered her passion for dancing – especially for Contact Improvisation in
2012. Since then she is continuously fascinated by this unique and exciting dance form. She is
investigating somatic practices such Body-Mind-Centering and the Axis Syllabus as a point of
departure for solo movement and Contact Improvisation in water and on land. Teachers and
colleagues she mainly feels inspired and influenced by are Jörg Hassmann, Daniel Werner, Kira
Kirsch, Antoine Ragot, Nina Wehnert, Friederike Tröscher, Jens Johannsen and Otto Ramstad.
Marielle teaches Contact Improvisation and Watercontact in private lessons, regular evening
classes, different workshop formats in various cities and international festivals in Germany,
Austria, India and Portugal. She is organising three Jams in the region where she lives, teaches
Contact Improvisation and Somatics in the school for contemporary dance Sozo Visions in
Motion in Kassel and is involved in a couple of different performance projects. Since 2018 she
is also studying at the Paracelsus School in Germany to become a psychotherapist.


CI Class on Land:
“Move your masses”
In this class we use experiental anatomy inspired by Body-Mind-Centering and the Axis
Syllabus as a point of departure for solo movement and Contact Improvisation.
Introducing the concept of the three motoric masses along our vertical axis – head, chest and
pelvis – to find orientation and differentiation for sensation and movement. With weight,
volume and kinetic potential these three areas of the body can have more or less contact with
the floor, the sky or a partner. They can relate in different ways to each other – bending to the
front, the back, one side or the other, they can rotate and counter rotate around each other. One
of the masses can lead the other two, bringing us into sequential movement or they can be bound
for more stability.
To me, this concept has been very inspiring for my improvisation and useful for talking about
movement and partnering in my classes. I will be happy to share it with you. There will be
somatic research, pathways and time for integration through dancing.
To get a taste of my work and dancing, check out my homepage and some videos of mine:

Water Laboratory:
Moving in water – alone and together - offers great opportunities to work on elements that are
very useful for dance on land and more specifically for contact improvisation.
As we fall much slower in the water – falling feels much safer. Weight can be regulated by
the breath and by how deep you go into the water. So this is perfect for exploring lifting
techniques from contact improvisation and as movement slows down in the water you have
more time to observe, analyse and study everything. The constant continuous sensory
feedback from the water on your entire body surface supports the sensory-motor-learning
Me for example, I explore breathing, sounding, floating, balancing, sinking, falling, turning,
spiraling, expanding, condensing, sequential movement, all developmental movement patterns
from body-mind-centering, moving into the back space, building structures with support
value, using and resolving them, horizontal, vertical, three dimensional movement.
The skin and the layers underneath serve as a means of communication between dance
partners. Friction, counterrotation and adhesion can be found and used to stick to your partner
in the water. To me, Watercontact has been one of the major keys to understand directionality
and momentum for my contact improvisation practice on land.

Please note:
• in the morning of the 31 th of December there will be a preparation meeting in the
studio that is obligatory for everybody who wants to join us in the pool
• at the pool there will be no teaching; this session has a laboratory character where we
research on our own and together; I will give propositions and ideas what to research
on in the preparation meeting in the morning
• bring a bathing suit, a nose-clip and - if needed - ear plugs; you can buy or borrow a
nose-clip of me for 5 €; if you wish bring goggles
• additional pool costs: 24,50 € for 4h in the venue plus public transportation in Berlin
• bring sauna equipment if you wish to go to the sauna

To get a taste on how Watercontact can look like and what I am up to, check out this little