The Body as a Score

The Body as a Score

25 September, 2021

Led by:

  • Yun Ingrid Lee – artist and curator, working with text, sound, scores and performance.
  • Karina Dukalska – graphic designer, researcher and dance-educator; cultural diversity, differences in perspective and social awareness
Intended learning outcomes (more on programme level)

Part of Marres’ Workshops ‘Training the Senses’.

Learning objectives (course specific)

How to make and read different kinds of scores using your body and voice.

Objective statement (course description)

Scores are used in music, dance and performing arts as a way of recording or triggering compositions and choreographies. They can be read, interpreted and performed by the artists themselves, or by other performers. This workshop will look at how to make and read different kinds of scores using your body and voice.

We’ll be diving into topics such as:

  • how can you develop a notation system that both captures what you want to communicate and can easily be interpreted by performers?
  • What elements of a performance do we choose to include and leave out in a score?

In The Body as a Score-workshop we’ll be using text, speech, and graphic elements in our scores, and our bodies and voices as instruments. Please bring your own texts to work with (a recipe, a poem, a novel, etc.). No previous experience in any form of score-making is required.

Type of course :

extracurricular course

Target group :

general audience

Teaching method:




It begins with a warm-up exercise, following the directions of Karina. Participants are asked to follow along with the movements made by Karina. It starts with slow movements beginning at the neck, going down to the shoulders, hips, legs, feet. Karina gives verbal instructions as well on what to imagine or think while doing said movements.


Few exercises – come up with your own score

  • A series of sounds are presented to the participants and they must write what they hear in lines, dots, etc. Another time they write down what they hear in letters. Afterwards everyone puts their papers on the floor in a pile and everyone gets to look at different interpretations of sounds presented. Some of the papers are picked by the leaders and are discussed by the maker.
  • Participants are asked to work in pairs, facing each other. One participant makes the movements, the other makes the sounds they associate to the movements. This goes on for a minute and then the partners switch roles.
  • Two large groups are formed and one person is chosen to make sounds for the group. The group must make movements according to the sounds heard.
    • After the first try, it was suggested to try again and this time not reflecting on what others were doing but making the movements as the participants wished – for this some people chose to close their eyes.
  • Last exercise was to write own performances and act them out in front of everyone or have someone else act it out for the maker. Everyone was free to come up with whatever they wanted, and most involved a combination of movement and direction.
Assessment of learning : N/A
Effect (witness account, evaluation of the course)
Additional biblio sources (available at Marres)

  • Recordings of sounds;
  • A PowerPoint presentation about how dance was recorded over time on paper.