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Divine pathways of the body


A retreat about Contact Improvisation with Anjelika Doniy


Steigemühle, near Berlin, Germany

The dance starts with movement

Movement, with the body, with arms or legs

Each movement is a dance with gravity and a reaching towards the sky

Each movement is perfect in this very moment of absolute presence


The dance invites us to explore our body

Find a connection with it

Learn from it the most steady and effortless way to move

Unite with the wisdom of existence that created our body for dance

Understanding this, we dance ourselves in this very moment

This retreat is an encounter with our body, sensitivity, ability to perceive new things and let go of the unnecessary.
Every moment of practice is designed to give the body care, and in return to get the secrets of movement and self-expression.
Our journey is not outside, but inside the body's wisdom, from childlike safe patterns on the floor to fearless jumps from a roof...

We will warm up with various exercises and games. Relax through release technique and bodywork. Explore breathing, listening, witnessing. Include Aikido elements. Study the structure of the body, its alignment, the movement of liquids and skin sensations. Integrate these structures, compositions, states of awareness in the dance. Authenticity. Use jams and performance formats.

We will work in the dance studio and outdoors. Nature will take us in, teach us about the flow of life.
Authentic movement will be our guide to understand how to communicate with ourselves and others. How to share time, space, silence and contemplation. Sharing time will help us building community spirit as well as individual uniqueness.
We are going to explore the game of the four elements - Water, Air, Earth and Fire. We are going to create a space for those elements to appear in the body, in the space and in the dance. Expanding, exploding, feeling the flow, opening our curiosity towards the movement and stillness, silence and sound.
Allowing these qualities to enter our daily life. A silent day will support nonverbal communication. This can help us refining our ability to communicate authentically, innocently. It can connect us to a simple joy.



Anjelika Doniy


is a dance improviser, choreographer and teacher of Contact Improvisation.

She was educated at the High School of Culture, St. Petersburg.

After graduation, she was a theatrical choreographer for 10 years.
Since 1997 she creates CI events, built her “dance house”, teaches CI and travels.
She created the yearly, nine day International Contact Improvisation and Performance Festival in Moscow. 2006 - 2010.

She took part in different international festivals of contemporary dance, collaboration projects concerning improvisation and contact with teachers like Régine Chopinot (France), Mary Folkerson (Netherlands), Eszter Gal (Hungary), Benno Vooram (Sweden), Danny Lepkoff (USA), Lisa Nelson (USA), Nancy Stark Smith (USA).
Since 1999 she has been living in Moscow, and teaching Contact Improvisation, Improvisation and Movement Development.

Anjelika says:
"I have studied to be a choreographer, I've been taught various skills of training and means of teaching the body of others. In my “archive” there are many stage pieces from folk dance to ballet miniatures. My work in the theatre has been very enriching. The acting, directing and dramaturgy broadened my mind and my image of dance as an art form. I began to see how the art of charming an audience is created.
Since I've met Contact Improvisation and the first CI teachers, I practice the art of de-educating the body of another person and disentangling the illusions about movement and dance.
I think that the human being is already perfect the way it is, and I believe in nature and its laws. I dance, investigate and live in harmony with this vision.  
I'm prompted by the ability to fall in love unconditionally and undoubtedly with people, movements, mountains, journeys, ideas. This ability has helped me to learn everything that forms me right now. This is what I share with others.
CI is the only dance that helps me leave the limits of personality and transform my consciousness. In this sense I'm the student, not the teacher. The better I learn, the more chances have the others to learn something from me.


My special interest in Contact Improvisation goes to clarity. Clarity in the practice. Honesty in how do I move my weight in the field of gravity. Attention in separating the dance from the personal. Letting things happen as they do.

I'm grateful to have met teachers such as Steve Paxton, Nancy Stark Smith, Danny Lepkoff, Benno Voorham, Lisa Nelson, Esther Gal, Alexander Girshon, Yaniv Mintzer, Jörg Hassman, Martin Keogh and many others.  

I cannot say I teach Contact Improvisation. I share Contact Improvisation, I share myself, I share what my teachers taught me, my dance.... tea and water.
I think that Contact Improvisation as a communication tool needs certain conditions to evolve. The greatest joy for me is to create a space for people to come together and discover meanings and sense of the dance and life.”





23.09.2019 4pm until
29.09.2019 3pm

Every day we will work for about 5 hours and have jams.

Steigemühle 1
04936 Schlieben

Germany (sorry - it's only in German)

For pictures of other events at Steigemühle, click here.
The place is dedicated to self development, so we don't use alcohol or drugs.

How to get there

If you arrive by airplane, fly to Berlin (any airport) or maybe Leipzig.

Schlieben is between Berlin (120km), Leipzig (95km) and Dresden (95km).

The train from Berlin to the closest train station Herzberg (Elster – not Harz!!) takes less than 1,5h (around 14€).

From there it's another 15km.

Unfortunately the bus connections are not working well - so if you arrive in groups we can pick you up from the train station by car. We will arrange this shortly before the retreat.



This retreat is open to all levels.

If you never danced Contact Improvisation before, please contact me. I recommend to get a little familiar with the dance form beforehand.

Breakfast will be prepared by the group . The rest of the day Igor will provide us with vegetarian, organic food.

Each day some of us will support him prepping and do the dishes too.

You are welcome to bring your own tent and sleeping bag and mat and camp outside. It can be a bit chilly at night so better bring a warm sleeping bag. We provide extra blankets if necessary.
If you would like to sleep in the house (2-4 beds per room), it´s 10€ extra per night, please bring your own bedsheets if you can.

520€ early bird (until July 1st)

560€ if you register later
This includes organic food, accommodation, tuition and jams.
Sleeping in the house costs 10€ extra per night (60€ in total).

​If you have serious financial issues, feel free to talk to me.

Please click here to register.

If you have any questions or need more information, don't hesitate to ask:

mail [at]


I want to thank Aude Fondard and Caitlin Smith for helping to create this website and a postcard anouncing this event.

Looking forward to diving deep into this retreat with you!



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