Instadance Video Workshop: Merging Dance, Video, Technology, and Social Media
Some would say we put too much emphasis on technology in today's society. Nevertheless, technology has the potential to be an extremely effective collaborator in the dance world, especially with regard to dance for camera. Video becomes a medium for creative expression which gives the artist the ability to determine the audience’s perspective. Dance for camera is limitless in the possibilities for creative integration of multiple art forms, providing dance makers with additional tools and skills that can be translated back to the stage. Traditionally, one of the downfalls of dance for camera work is the inherent need for video and lighting equipment that is not always readily available, especially to educators and students. However, with the advanced technology of smart phones and tablets, making dance for camera work has never been more accessible. 


During the 2016 NDEO National Conference workshop participants experienced firsthand the Instadance activity which integrates dance for camera into the classroom using two easily accessible tools, 1) personal portable devices (i.e. smartphones and tablets) and 2) the photo/video application Instagram. The Instadance activity can be done in a single, one-hour class period or can be spread out over multiple days. I have found the greatest success when I am able spread the activity over at least two class periods; anything less and it often becomes necessary to eliminate key components of the activity, which I do not recommend as all aspects of this activity are extremely valuable to students’ assimilation of the material. The curriculum for this activity is geared towards students that are either new to screendance, new to dance composition, and/or new to both.


The Instadance activity is a goal oriented experience meant to help students make connections between movement composition and dance for camera concepts. The project utilizes ‘dance specific’ approaches to help students learn about creating a storyline for films, as well as, utilizing ‘film specific’ approaches to help students learn about editing dance. Components of the Insta-dance Video class project include: writing, movement exploration, discussion, drawing (storyboarding), presentation, and reflection. Workshop participants were provided with the necessary training and handouts to begin incorporating this project immediately into most dance education learning environments. Some of those materials can be downloaded below.

The Process

© 2020 by SHARON McCAMAN.