Hunter Farley Seymour is co-organizer of the Knoxville Movement Collective’s Dance Wave, a free-form dance in a drug-, smoke-, alcohol-, and chatter-free environment. The Wave is held April 11 at 7 p.m. and all second Fridays and last Sundays (at 11 a.m.) at the Broadway Academy of Performing Arts & Events Center (706 N. Broadway).
Could you describe this dance form in 25 words or less?
In short, a Dance Wave is soul food. Through authentic movement you get a healthy dose of dance therapy. It makes you feel whole, alive, and one with the universe.
Who does the dance appeal to most?
Anyone who wants to get out of their head and into their body. Each one is about 75 minutes long. If you like yoga, meditation, movement, dance, self-exploration, no judgment, healing, laughter and warmth, the dance wave is your gig.
What’s the biggest challenge to enjoying the dance style?
Getting out of your own way. It’s a challenge to drop the constant chatter that goes on in our heads and just feel the music—to just embrace the sound and allow our bodies to do the talking rather than our voices. To stop thinking and just move.
Can you talk at all during the dance?
There is 30-minute warm up before each dance that is basically social time, and we stop talking when we have opening circle. Of course we gab it up after the dance!
Do you need to be limber? At a certain level of physical fitness?
Heavens, no! Movement is for everyone—every age, size, body in the world. Just empty yourself into the movement. Whatever that may be.
When did you start dancing?
I’m dancing my way through life. I’ll dance anywhere, and always have. I started dancing “dance waves,” which are also known as “ecstatic dance” or “authentic movement,” four years ago here in Knoxville with my good friend Shanti. But truth be told, I’ve always danced like this even if it was just around the house.
Is the part about no alcohol or tobacco during the dance important?
Yeah, that’s important. Would you go to a meditation group or yoga class smoking or drinking? I don’t think so. Bring lots of water though, you’ll need it!
Is there a type of person who is most likely to come back again and again?
I think the people who come back over and over do so because you feel connected, alive, totally accepted and loved for you. That is a feeling that should be repeated and often. Everyone should be so lucky.
Have people ever had funny mistaken impressions about the Dance Wave?
I’m fairly blunt so I’m just going to say it: The Dance Wave is kinda like a global-themed rave without the intoxicants. It’s just good ol’ fashioned freestyle dancing. Some people think they need liquor to let themselves go and be all in—but you don’t.
Can you teach it to anyone?
We all move all day, everyday, so can I teach it? No. But, I can encourage someone to relax and go with the flow.
Is there an upper or lower age limit?
No. We have dancers from ages 3 to 100. It’s a pretty amazing experience. A complete circle of life.
How popular would you like this to be?
Oh my! It’s my passion. I’d like to share it with the world.
For more information: meetup.com/dancewave/ or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org