Wednesday, December 9, 2015

First California expandance class, and "Album Dance"

We had a lovely class this morning at Dance Underground in Petaluma, California.

Today was a sampler class - I taught 30 minutes of ''Album Dance'' (a new class I'm starting up soon) and 30 minutes of expandance technique, before heading in to consult with a local theater company on some choreography for an upcoming show of theirs. 

First California expandance class!

And so, to Album Dance. You know, one way I've come to know lots of great music over the years is by hearing it in class, or stumbling across it while looking for something to dance / choreograph / teach to. Usually in a dance class you move to a playlist of carefully selected songs compiled by your teacher, and I often hear a song and think "That's a great track, I wonder what the rest of the album is like". So I thought it might be a fun idea to teach a series of dance classes to entire albums, so if there's an album you have been meaning to hear / get into / or just love, let me know, Sonoma! 

Coming to a town near you, Spring 2016! Watch this space :-)

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

In Portland, Oregon

Hi West Coast!

I'm currently in Portland, and giving private expandance sessions at Potentials Yoga and Wellness.

I have the following times available this week:

Friday Nov 6th after 12pm

Saturday 7th after 3pm - 6pm

Sunday 8th after 12pm

Private sessions are:

1 hour $65
1.5 hours $85

Payable in advance via PayPal to or in person on the day by cash or credit card.

Potentials is at 200 NE 20th Avenue

See you in the studio!

- Rachel

Friday, August 7, 2015

Last NYC expandance class. Now's the time folks!

Super excited to announce a 2.5 hour expandance workshop in NYC this August. This is the last one I'll be teaching before leaving New York. 

Date: Sunday August 16th 
Time: 2.30 - 5pm 
Please aim to arrive early. Late comers will not be admitted. 
Investment: $25 in advance / $30 on the door - space is limited; I highly recommend reserving your spot in advance
Location: Ripley Grier, 520 8th Avenue, New York 
Studio 17B
520 8th Avenue (between 36th & 37th Streets)
Nearest trains: Penn Station 

Pay in advance here.

Questions? E-mail me!

No experience required! Just show up. The biggest thing you can ever do for yourself is show up.

Each expandance class consists of a combination of any of the following: group warm-ups (may include yoga-inspired combinations), dance exercises, meditation, drawing, visualization, games (may include circus / clown games), tools for choreography and performance skills, vocalizing, massage, stretching with a partner, dancing to music, dancing in silence, and group discussion and analysis of what we've observed or learned. Think of it like a group meditation experience (I sometimes call expandance ''Meditation for People who Can't Sit Still") - we move without judgement, without internal editing, to dance the dance that our body already wants to dance, choreographing from the inside out.

See you there!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

May 23rd class canceled


Sat May 23rd expandance class in NYC is canceled. I realized it is Memorial Day weekend and, like many of you, I'll be fleeing the city for quieter rural pastures.

I'll post the June schedule when I'm back.

Have a great memorial day weekend!

- Rachel 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

NYC May class schedule & special offer!

May class schedule is here!

Friday May 1st      6pm - 7:30pm      studio 17H
Friday May 15th      6pm - 7:30pm      studio 16E
Saturday May 23rd      6pm - 7:30pm      studio 17C

All classes are at Ripley Grier, 520 8th Avenue (between 36th and 37th Streets), New York
Closest subways are the A, C, E, 1, 2, 3 to 34th Street.

Each class is $20 on the door (cash or credit) or $17 in advance here


Take all 3 classes this May for only $45 - saving you $5 per class, a total of $15 in savings! To avail of this offer, click here to pay. T&C: $45 must be received by midnight April 30th and is non-refundable  (as a whole or in part) in the event you miss class/es. 

After last week's class, dancer Olga wrote online: "What a great experience it was today to take my first class of expandance technique. If you're interested in researching within yourself for new 'places' to move your body, free of mental judgements and chaos I recommend to check it out. Thank you Rachel, definitely discovered new places in me today."

What to wear: Comfortable clothes you can move in - sweats, t-shirt, yoga pants etc. Nothing too baggy as baggy pants can be a tripping hazard! We move barefoot or in socks. There are water fountains and changing facilities at Ripley Grier studios. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Self-judge much? Come to class tomorrow!

Do you know - one of the reasons I created the expandance technique was because I was crippled by my own self-judgement every time I walked into a dance class. Even every time I danced on my own. I created it and developed it over years to be a technique that would help me (and YOU!) to find that peace, that lovely kid inside who dances with joy and abandon. And people LOVE this technique for this very reason. If you can not let your self-judgement win *long enough* to get you to class, you're on the right path smile emoticon See you tomorrow!

expandance is open to all, regardless of prior experience

Saturday April 18th 
5pm - 6.30pm
Ripley Grier studio 17C
520 8th Avenue (between 36th and 37th streets) New York City
Closest subways at Penn Station 
$20 on the door / $17 in advance here

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Upcoming classes New York City

Dear friends,

I'm so happy to share with you two upcoming drop-in expandance classes this month in New York City

Saturday March 21st 2015
5pm - 6.30pm

Saturday March 28th 2015
5pm - 6.30pm

GREAT for: 

* total beginners who want to move 
* musical improvisors / reg. improvisors
* more advanced dancers

 At Ripley Grier Studios
Midtown Manhattan

Special online advance rate: $17
or $20 on the door

To get $3 off pay here

RSVP (or simply pay online) to 

This class is a mixture of easy-to-follow contemporary technique and mindful movement, all woven together with consciousness, love, and support. Open to beginners who are perhaps fearful of dancing and want to be more conscious of their bodies, get moving, and feel more confident, to musical improvisors who want to learn better spacial reasoning skills and rhythm, and to more advanced dancers who want to create a deeper dialogue with the body and learn how to heal and prevent injury. YAY!

I look forward to dancing with you!


Saturday, January 24, 2015

Photos from Costa Rica workshop

Well, it's only been a year (!) since our first expandance 4 day workshop in Costa Rica, and I'm getting on top of things by finally posting some photos :) Go, productivity!

We had a powerful, profound, beautiful, transformative and fun workshop at Johanna Harmala's incredible space near Lake Arenal. Delicious food, monkeys playing in the trees, swims in the river, hummingbirds, dance, play, art and music. Here are a few photos from the workshop.

"There are so many things to recommend about Rachel's course it's hard to know where to begin. First of all, she helped me remember that I have a body as well as a mind. Like a lot of people I suppose, I find myself locked inside my head far too much for my own comfort. expandance teaches you how to feel and experience your body in a way that's both profound but totally joyful and light. I loved the way that expandance incorporates play and gives you permission to let your inner freak out. Since doing the course my days feel that bit more spacious and my body feels my own again. 

Rachel is a wonderful teacher: encouraging, empathic and great at intuiting where your head's at. 
Before expandance I couldn't ever imagine myself running around a stage like a little kid in front of others. But one of the real joys of the program is that it teaches you that it's not only okay to give yourself permission to open up in this way, it's also really, really good for you. 

"You don't have to be a dancer to do this. All it takes is a willingness to test your boundaries and to put your faith in others, but most of all in yourself. The rewards are enormous." 

- Paul Willis, UK / NYC writer and Costa Rica workshop participant 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Dance for musical improvisers

Are you on a musical improv team? Yay!

Are you a fabulous singer and an incredible improvisor … who secretly quakes at the thought of dancing on stage? Do you find yourself rooted to the spot for your spot songs and shutting down on your opening numbers? Did you see "Blank - The Musical" and think "I could do that… if only I could dance like that!"
Do you feel like a dunce dancer?

All is not lost my friend. 

It's going to be ok. 

I've been improvising movement on stage since the age of 12, and I'd like to share with you some of what I've learnt from studying improv, dance improv, choreography and direction in the 20 years since. 

Things like:

* Interpretation of musical style - what gift did your pianist just give you, that you can turn into movement?  

* How to bring details from your scene into your choreography

* Back line choreography

* Movement inspired by your location / the driving emotion of the scene etc

* Spot song / duet / trio choreography and spacial relationships

* Motifs - call back your moves!

* How to listen to your team mates on a whole new level - with your BODY! 

* Creating dynamic stage pictures

Stage picture, you guys. 

… AND how to do all this without having to think about it!

Let me help you elevate your musical improv.

Book a rehearsal with me today: 

*** Currently I'm in NYC. I'm happy to travel to give workshops too - let's talk! ***