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OSF is a somatic movement practice based on the principle that when we are releasing physical tension we can move with greater freedom, power and articulation. Imagery and hands-on tactile studies foster a deeper kinaesthetic experience of movement. The images used are metaphors for technical aspects of moving, such as posture and alignment, and are interwoven with music and sound that taps into the imagination triggering spontaneous improvised movements. Movement unfolds in a variety of ways, ranging from gentle to energetic, allowing for integration of technical growth and creativity. The result can be a deeply embodied awareness of new possibilities in how participants move. Participants can bring or wear layers for warmth and comfort as we shift between rest and movement.

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Michelle Erard is a dance artist, educator, and somatic movement facilitator. She earned her MFA in Choreography and Performance at Smith College and is a certified teacher of Action Theater and Open Source Forms (OSF). 

Michelle’s journey with somatic practices and bodywork began in the year 2000. Her bodywork training wove together physical, energetic, and somatic healing practices. She was introduced to OSF in 2015 and found the work life-changing. OSF bridges Michelle’s healing and creative work and underpins her practices.

OSF is a somatic, healing, and creative movement practice expanded from Skinner Releasing Technique that combines influences from Alexander Technique, Zen Buddhism, and ideokinesis. OSF offers an intuitive approach for accessing greater physical, emotional, and mental freedom through releasing – the letting go of habitual holding patterns.

Michelle’s teaching and facilitation includes releasing tension, inducing an alpha brain wave state through imagery and breathing, giving hands-on tactile studies, and guiding movement explorations as tools for cultivating embodiment. 

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