One element that makes the GUS practice different from a regular Underscore is the Facings.

The Facings will consist of two 5-minute Stands/Small Dances (a focus on standing developed by Steve Paxton) during the 4-hour GUS Practice, that create a spiral that circles the earth 5 times from the most southern site to one of the most northern sites.

The Facings are a way to connect Underscore dancers around the world doing a specific action at the same time.

Dancers do the 1st Facing (at the 50-minute mark) facing a GUS site to the East.

Dancers do the 2nd Facing, during the final 5 minutes (at the 3-hour 55-minute mark) facing a GUS site to the West.

The Facings are “our dates with the world” as Nancy Stark Smith, developer of the Underscore, said. Nancy would spend time considering who and where each of the GUS sites were. She would imagine facing the backs of the dancers of the next site (an idea that came from Claire Filmon) and that next site facing the backs of the dancers of their next site, and so on — transmitting a kind of attention (or intention) around the world.

All Full Score Practices and Modified Scores, even if they are non-synchronous (“atemporal”), will be part of the Facings. The idea is to be more inclusive and a recognition that sites can still connect with each other even if they are atemporal. Also this atemporal element does seem to resonate with concepts within the Undercore. The Underscore coordinators do recognize that some dancers/sites do not want to do an atemporal Facing. In this case, one solution is for a site to face the next site in the line who are actually “there” in space and time.

Individual dancers participating in the “Catch-All” Zoom are included in the Facings.

The GUS Coordinators figure out the order of the GUS site Facings 3 days before the GUS Practice and will post it in the Facilitator’s Packet. Site facilitators can then share it, along with the other materials, with the dancers of their site.

If you have any questions about the Facings, please email us.