Annual Body Shift Mixed-Ability Dance Intensive
Patterns of Disruption with Sandra Paola
This workshop will share Sandra Paola’s developmental approach to dancemaking and the ethical implications of physical improvisation in working with inclusive dance/movement practices. By combining the social therapeutic methodology – a radically humanistic approach to therapy, education and community organizing that relates to people as social creators of their lives – with her experience in Action Theater, Ensemble Thinking, Contact Improvisation and vipassana mediation, Sandra makes an overt shift from content (what we are creating) to relationship (how we are relating).sandrapaolaphoto2
Perhaps what is most innovative about this practice is not its theory, but its activity. In that spirit, Sandra will co-create with participants the process of how to create a workshop together at the same time as the workshop itself.
Sunday will be a continuation of Saturday’s work but open to newcomers and will culminate in a jam.
Come dance!
June 2nd: 10am-5pm (1.5 hour lunch)
June 3rd: 12pm-3pm (includes jam)
*registration available for Sunday only

UT Austin-Winship Building
$100-$200 sliding scale
($25 discount – early bird registration before May 19th)
*If you prefer to attend Sunday only, your tuition is only $25.
Adults of all abilities and experience levels, age 16 and up for more info about Sandra
Registration deadline is May 25th
Visit to register
Hosted by Body Shift and VSA Texas


On-going Classes


Come shift your perspective! In Body Shift’s on-going Elements class we offer a fun and accessible environment in which to explore dance improvisation. You can be a beginner and learn tools to create your own dance. You can be a professional dancer and be challenged to move in new and unique ways outside of your habitual patterns. We use the internationally renowned DanceAbility method of improvisation to encourage individual creative expression, increased body awareness as well as collaboration and ensemble thinking.

The Elements class takes place every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month at the Townlake YMCA in the first floor group exercise studio (1100West Cesar Chavez St).  No gym membership is required to attend. Open to adults age 16 and up; all ability and experience levels. No registration necessary and fee for class is on a sliding scale from $5-$20, cash or check accepted. See you at the Y!


Guest Artist Intensives and Residencies

Each year, Body Shift hosts at least one weekend long intensive or week long residency with a guest artist from outside the Austin community.  Our hope is to expand the skill level of the long time participants to include a variety of dance improvisation techniques as well as open up the larger dance community to strategies for inclusive dance in performance.  Guest artists we have hosted in the past include, Karen Nelson, Alito Alessi, Gerda Konig, Heidi Latsky, Stephan Koplowitz, and Nina Martin.




Site Specific Performance Workshops

This bi-annual workshop is a month long process in which we meet four to five times to create a site-specific performance. Performance experience or previous participation in the Body Shift Elements class is required. Pictures and descriptions of past workshops can be found on our Gallery page. Please contact with questions about upcoming workshops.

About Body Shift

Body Shift offers classes and workshops in mixed-ability improvisational dance which provide a welcoming environment that empowers people of all abilities to embrace dancing in their own unique way. This in turn creates a diverse community of people who find joy in dancing together. Co-founded by VSA Texas and Forklift Danceworks, now with full support from VSA Texas, and our partnership with DanceAbility International we continue to expand our reach into the central Texas community and beyond.

Learn more