Student Blog: Breaking into something new with Victor Quijada

January 30, 2017

Victor Quijada rehearses in GKIDC. Photo by Carolyn DiLoreto

Victor Quijada stages a duet on BFA students | Photo by Carolyn DiLoreto

By Alvaro Montelongo

Working with Victor Quijada, founder and co-director of RUBBERBANDance Group, has been a challenging and fulfilling journey. It is not often that we get to go on two hands and upside down, as dancers or as everyday pedestrians. Having trained in Quijada’s methodology, the RUBBERBAND Method, for three weeks last year, we now have the opportunity to apply what we learned by learning a piece from his company´s repertory.

The RUBBERBAND Method arose from Quijada’s need to create a common ground between classically and contemporary trained dancers and b-boys. This exploration resulted in a methodology that can translate into any form of training. His work provides tools to access some of the breakdancing vocabulary as well as to look at classical and contemporary dance in a more methodical manner.

His choreography stems from the morphing of these styles, and we had the opportunity to learn an adapted duet from his repertory. In the duet, the man and the woman work interchangeably as the base, which differs from most of the partnering we have done (where the man is always providing a base for the woman). The woman spends a good amount of the duet on her hands or upside down, which requires a new approach to partnering. The solo work also takes a completely different angle; most of the time we stand on three points (on two feet and one hand, or two hands and one foot) changing directions and levels while working to maintain a smooth quality in the movement.

Fluent in his own language

There is no way we would have been able to pick up this choreography without having acquired some of the RUBBERBAND Method skills from Quijada. He is very inspiring to work with, primarily because he is so advanced in his own method that he pushes us towards becoming fluent in his language. However, he does not push us in an aggressive manner, he guides us towards the goal with a clear intention—no drama attached to the message. In my experience, he is one of the choreographers who is most efficient in sharing information and I am incredibly thankful that he is sharing some of his knowledge with us here at Kaufman.