Permuting Connections: Software for Dancers

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This chapter appears in a collection of essays and interviews edited by conceptual artist and musician Paul D. Miller. The chapter is the first to explicitly trace connections between computers and dance back to the 1960s when early computer artists, often mathematicians and computer scientists by training, were experimenting with ways the computer could support creative processes. The chapter focuses on the work of a select number of individuals, for example A. Michael Noll and John Lansdown, whose seminal contributions provided a historical backdrop to the Software for Dancers (SFD) initiative in 2001. With funding from Arts Council England, SFD was a six-month research project involved a handful of leading UK choreographers coming together with digital artists and designers “to develop concepts for a software rehearsal tool(s) for choreographers and those practitioners for whom the body in motion is a primary material.” Several current practice-based interdisciplinary projects funded by AHRC, EU and other sources and many articles and conference papers can be traced directly back this early research project, which this chapter provides a specific history for. The anthology itself has had very wide distribution and visibility as it features thirty-six essays, interviews, and artist statements on the impact of “remix” o creative practice of writers, musicians and artists and includes contributions from many well-known practitioners including Pierre Boulez, Pauline Oliver, Brian Eno, Steve Reich, Cory Doctorow as well as scholars/ writers such as Erik Davis, Catherine Corman, Manuel DeLanda, Frances Dyson, Jonathan Lethem, Hans Ulrich Obrist and Bruce Sterling. [author's note]
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSound Unbound: Sampling Digital Music and Culture
EditorsPaul D. Miller
Place of PublicationCambridge, Massachusetts, USA
PublisherMIT Press
ISBN (Print)9780262633635
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • dance
  • computers
  • choreography
  • software


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