Ep. #52 Technique Vs Style with Almost Every Guest From 2020

Words That Move Me with Dana Wilson
Words That Move Me with Dana Wilson
Ep. #52 Technique Vs Style with Almost Every Guest From 2020
What is the difference between Technique and Style?  I have asked this question more times than I can count and never got the same answer twice. To see if I could make some sort of concrete conclusion, I asked every single guest that came on the podcast this year for their thoughts.  Now, you get to hear their answers and find out if any of them agree! Do you agree with any of my guests?  What is YOUR answer to this burning question:  What is the difference between technique and style?

Show Notes

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Intro: This is words that move me, the podcast where movers and shakers, like you get the information and inspiration. You need to navigate your creative career with clarity and confidence. I am your host master mover, Dana Wilson. And if you’re someone that loves to learn, laugh and is looking to rewrite the starving artist story, then sit tight. But don’t stop moving because you’re in the right place. 

Dana: Okay. So here is the million dollar question and it’s, I cannot wait to hear your answer because I think you’ll have a good one. Um, no pressure. What is the difference between technique and style  

Marty Kudelka: Technique is something you can learn and style is, is, I mean, it’s unique to each individual individual, like, because I would say you can’t teach style, but I think you can teach style. So, Oh, so you can teach both of them. I don’t know  

Dana: Its a tough one! When I like, and, and, and the wires get, or the lines get really muddy. When you think about somebody like Bob Fosse, for example, whose style became a technique, like you can have good Fosse form, or you can have bad Fosse form, you can do the style well, or you can do it not well. You can,  

Marty: Yeah, you need both.

But what’s the difference? Uh, no. Ah, Yikes. Okay. I’ll tell you, I’ll give a, we’ll have a little conversation about it. So usually, and I started asking this question a long time ago, long before the podcast. And usually when I ask it, I get an answer that is some sort of a metaphor or simile people are like, well, technique is like the roadmap and style is like the car that you’re driving on the journey, or like, um, uh, yeah, that was Taja Riley.  

Oh my god

She’s very, Very ephemeral sometimes. So, um, another one that I really love this idea actually, um, there’s a famous photographer who says that technique is like gloves. You get, you use the technique to get the job done. And there are different techniques for different jobs. For example, your dentist wears different gloves than your gardener, wears different gloves than a golf player versus a, um, welder, right? Different techniques for different jobs, different gloves for different jobs, but style is like your fingerprint. And sometimes the technique can cover up the signature, right? The artistic voice and technique can kind of get in the way of, uh, the, the, um, Oh I’m botching it, but technique can inhibit sometimes the individualization, the style, which is, I think what you were speaking to this idea, that tech, that style is truly an individual thing. And I do dig, I dig on that. Um, but it’s, again, it’s a simile, it’s like making sense of a thing by saying that it’s like something else I really want to know. What is the difference between technique and style? I, I, I’m excited about your take on this and I hope you sit with this thought for a second, because your work is almost exclusively style. There aren’t a ton, other than the inside pirouettes, aren’t a ton of technical elements. It’s about the style. It’s about the way you carry yourself.  

Yes. And yes, I agree with that, but I also agree or disagree in the fact that it doesn’t do this, have to be a technical, like, like something technical as in a turn or an axle or something like that, because I think there’s this technique or the technique to do into my stuff, which is the texture of it all. You know what I mean? Like the people who do it, the best the yous Ivan’s and Nats, I don’t have to tell you what the texture is, you know, by have done done my stuff so long that, you know, if it’s, you know, like this lean on, like, I love you on set the tone, you know, that it’s just, you’re going through it and you know what it’s supposed to be. You know, it’s not going to be like a pop or like a, you know,  jab, you know that, so there’s a technique, there is a technique behind it, which is the texture of doing the texture. Right? Yeah. So I, I believe they’re one in the same.  

There you go, that’s your answer. 

I think you need, I think there, I feel that they go together. I dig it. Yeah. I don’t think they need to be different.  

Well often times they aren’t. it’s, they’re really sneaky. Um, but it’s fun to think about. And I really like, um, I love hearing, everybody’s answer to this question. I can’t wait to do the episode where side-by-side you get to hear how different people answer that question. It’s awesome.  

Dana: All right. That was me talking to Marty Kudelka about the difference between technique and style. And this episode is that awesome episode. The episode where you will get to hear almost all of my guests from 2020 answering the same question. What is the difference between technique and style? And at the end of this episode, I encourage you to message or tag us on Instagram @wordsthatmovemepodcast to tell us what your answer is to that very thought provoking question. Yes, my friends, this is a good one. And, um, actually, you know what, next week is a good one too. We are closing out my first year of weekly podcasts with a couple of heavy hitters. And, um, I don’t want to waste a single second. I want to get into it. Um, but talking about our wins is not a waste of any seconds.  If you are new to the pod, we always start with wins. And that feels exceptionally appropriate here at the end of the year in December, when celebration is in the air this week, my win is that the podcast is super close to 50,000 downloads. And that is my halfway goal, which if I’m doing the math correctly means that *murmers* . Yes. 100,000 downloads by July of 2021 is my goal. That means we’ve got a little more than seven months. And if we keep growing like we are growing, I think we can totally do it. And I think you can totally help. So if you’re digging the pod, make sure to subscribe and download, tell a friend, leave a comment or a rating, review. It really does make it easier for people to find the podcast. And it helps me achieve my goal of being someone that helps more people. That’s what it is about for me. Simple. Is that okay? That’s my win. Nearly 50,000 downloads. Ooh. Now you go, what’s going well in your world. Congrats.  

I am so glad you’re winning. I am happy for you. And Oh my gosh. I forgot to tell you. I have another win. And so do you! Next year, with our new season, we are getting new wins music. Ha ha, yes, I have contacted my buddy Max Winnie. We’ll definitely be shouting you out in the show notes, max, um, Max is responsible for our fabulously funky podcast to nudge and he’s making us a wins jam and I am super excited about it. Super excited to share. And you know what, that, isn’t the only thing changing come 2021. We are changing by creating more ways that we can work together, like you with each other, and like me with you. Yes, I am starting a membership program that includes daily creative prompts, monthly Playlist’s monthly group calls, 24 seven community connection. And even one-on-one coaching with me. So if you dig the pod and simply want to show your support, we’ve got something for, if you’re an aspiring pro who wants to better understand the industry and yourself, we’ve got something for you. And if you are already a working professional, looking to dig deep and really take your craft to the next level, we will blow the lid off of what is possible. So the subscription doesn’t begin until January, but if you know you’re interested or if you know that you want to know more, you can email wtmmpodcast@gmail.com Just the letters, no gaps. WTMMpodcast@gmail.com to learn more. And preregister okay. Now let’s get back to the burning issue, technique versus style. What is the difference? Do any of my guests agree? Do you agree with any of my guests? I cannot wait to hear and I cannot wait to share. So here we go. We’re going to start off strong, right? Where it all started with Taja Riley. Taja and I talked years and years and years ago about this subject. She’s actually one of the first people that I asked this question and her answer has changed a lot. I think you’re going to really, really dig this, have a listen to Taja Riley and we’ll check back in, in a second.  

Dana: Do you remember this? 

Taja: I remember the conversation because you know what, I’m bringing this up literally to everybody, right. And it strikes me and it struck a chord and it took me into a deeper research for what— how do define even style. Like how do you do that? And so I think with technique it’s a little bit, um, it’s a little bit easier to define it as, Oh God, 

Dana: Good luck. It’s not easy at all this and this is why I ask it because it makes fascinating conversations.  

Taja: So I think to be a technician. Okay. Okay. Okay. So I did read somewhere, so I’m going to steal some stuff from people. Okay. Some people’s people’s scriptures, um, a technician, right. Is somebody that goes by the book. Like there is something that’s laid out, a specific plan, a specific logistic, a very, a left brain thought if you will, of something that’s put together to be a structure or a manual or a guide or a path to live by. Right. But then somebody like that is a creative, a creative person goes beyond what that is. They could not have schooling. They could not have, you know, a real say of, um, in terms of, um, a real schooling and a real tutalidge by that guide, by that technique, if, if you would, right, they, they live by a feeling right. A feeling that is spontaneous to them, a feeling that is inspired to them from their moment, their experience, their invitation to create something. Um, and I think that that’s usually where style would stem from, um, it’s their take and their perspective on, um, that moment. And then, and then there’s creativity. And that creativity is completely, it’s completely different than, uh, just a creative person, right? Creativity is that, say I want to make a hat, but now the hat is, has extra flowers or has flowers to it. Or it has, um, a certain color, a certain texture to it that it, that is the creativity now creative would be to say, and now we’re going to place that hat on your knee cap. That knee cap is going to be pro. I know that it’s probably hard to follow me. That’s the, that’s the, that’s the way that it got broken down to me. Um, just in terms of style, this is a way that you would do something being inspired off of a moment of feeling a song even. Um, but the technique of the layer of things, vocabularies steps, uh, specific method of thoughts, you know, that is something that go ahead.  

Uh, I, I keep cutting you off. I’m sorry. Can technique be inspired. You’re saying that style is inspired. Can technique be inspired?  

Taja: I think that, no, I think that, I think no, because, and I’m going to, I’m going to put it into a term or I’m gonna put it into the category of basketball, right? Uh, a friend of mine that plays, explained this to me right. There is literally one, one thing that you have to be able to do to score a point. You got to get it in the hoop. You got to. You got to dribble the ball at some point to travel there and you got to get it in the hoop right now, the getting it in the hoop That is the technique. There’s only one way that is the standard that’s, what’s been set. Right. But how you go about getting it in the hoop? That is the style. Does that make sense? So in terms of completing the step, go ahead.  

I think it’s so funny that, um, a basketball analogy would be what we wind up using you and I, these two dance types. Um, but it does that does make sense. I like the way you worded that. And most of the time that I ask this question, I get metaphors. I get like, you know, a relationship to a thing, you know, technique is to style as, um, you know, X is to Y but it does help to understand. And I like that explanation and very visual and clear way of explaining it. Yeah. I I’m with you. 

Dana: Oh yes. My friends sports analogies, hats on knee caps, we are really starting off strong and I am so excited for where we’re about to go. Next next, you’re going to hear from DIana Matos, Martha Nichols and Tiler Peck.

In full disclosure, there is no correct answer to this question or there’s no wrong answer either. Right,  

Diana: Right, right. Right. Um, for me, technique it’s someone or something, you know, what’s so funny as I’m about to answer, I’m already thinking, ah, not, not,  

Not always, not always I feel. Yeah. That’s why this is the conversation question.  

Diana: I would say this technique is to me, or for my perspective, either something scripted or studied by someone and sort of organized and structured in a way to offer some sort of consistency. Style, style varies according to your life experiences, your culture, your education, your environment. So I believe it’s something more abstract than, um, than technique. But then what is really technique and then technique, um, could also vary, right? So something that we study today might not be what it is tomorrow. So I’ll leave it with these thoughts, these gray thoughts, gray, gray, gray. That’s a really hard one. 

Martha: Oh gosh. This is hard. Technique is definitely a learned technique is okay. We like an analogy. Technique would be the bones of the skeleton style would be the skin.  

Dana: Okay. Style is the skin, the hair, the, the,  

Martha: That it comes in. Yes. Um, and then I’m totally gonna negate myself in that because you can also have style with no technique. I think that they are two separate, um, I’m flailing. I am flailing. I am flailing. I hear myself. Okay. Okay. 

Find your feet find your feet or yeah, I’m panicking. You don’t need, tell me what they are. Just tell me the difference 

For me. The difference would be style is easier for everyone to feel. Whereas technique is built for the technician to feel, um, technique. The technician is built to feel what it is. So I know if I’m operating in technique or if I am not, or as style I, the artist am feeling it, but also, so is the audience style is more felt for all parties. Whereas technique for me would be felt simply for the person executing it 

Beautifully put great answer. Love. It’s a tough question. And yeah. You find yourself like, well, no, no, that’s not. Well, if that was true, then this wouldn’t no, that doesn’t work. 

Yeah. Like if I was to like, sit on it a little more, I feel like the, the style is like, it’s a gift. Like, yeah.  

And technique is a burden Oh my God. Yes. Style is a gift. Technique is a curse. 

Oh gosh, don’t have any rotation. How can I get the heel forward. Man, your shoulders all engage your lats like. EH.. But then at the same time, once you master technique, technique, the gift freeing, it is a gift. And that, yeah. 

That’s why we’re wrong. So that’s why we’re still talking about it. 

Cause it’s because they are both everything and nothing. 

Can you have one without the other? 

I’m going to say, yes. 

I’m I’m, I’m going to go ahead and approve that. I’ve seen it. 

Dana: All right. Tiler Peck. What is the difference between technique and style? 

Tiler: I think technique is what you focus on in class and it’s more of like a uniformed, structural thing that exists. And I think style is what you personally bring to that technique. I think style is more about the individual and technique is more about the like educational side to dance. 

That is very succinct. You are one of the few people that has not answered that question with a metaphor, I don’t know, like technique is for the, the, the many, style is the individual. It’s a very hard question to answer because I have seen, I mean, Jabar Williams do a tondue that makes me want to **ing cry. Like I have seen, and then you have somebody, for example, like Bob Fosse who’s whose style became a technique. Like you could actually like that, that individual thing became a thing that you can teach a mass. Like there is such thing as  

Tiler: Balanchine that’s like the New York City Ballet, they always say like, is that a technique or is it a style? You know? And it’s kind of hard because I think it is a style, but they use it as a technique now to teach, you know? So you’re kind of teaching that style. So it’s hard. I know. Tough question Dana!   

I love a hard question. I love a hard question. It’s true. I really do love a hard question. And how about you? Are you, uh, forming your own answers to this hard question? I hope so. And I really can’t wait to hear it. Please message us @wordsthatmovemepodcast on Instagram, I’m stoked. All right. Now we’re going to take a deep dive, grab a pen, grab some paper. Cause we are going to school with Nick Palmquist, Spenser Theberge, and Jermaine Spivey.  

Nick: I believe that technique and style are different things, but I think that they can be applied to the same genre of dance. So within ballet, there’s a technique that has been historically codified. We agree that this building block that can be replicated throughout a class, a will repeat through history and will always be the technique of ballet. And then within that form, there are styles and there are people that started to deviate from the technique and they wanted to apply it to maybe how their body, um, how, what best celebrated their body. Uh, so maybe Bournonville was more explosive. So his style of leap was born out of a technique that everybody else agreed came before. It, I think Fosse, um, started as a style of jazz and became its own technique because over time, the creative process, the training process started to use the same shapes, started to use the same principles so that it became recognizable. It became replicatable. And, um, I would say that then I have started to create a style based off of the technique of Fosse. And, um, speaking of, I am, I’m someone that has been teaching and choreographing for only three years. And so I really have to be careful that I don’t, um, take credit for the techniques that I’ve been exposed to over the course of my training and take a little bit from all of them and say that, um, I’ve cultivated something of my own. And I think that’s where technique and style, um, become kind of challenging because if you aren’t aware of what you’re borrowing from, you’re taking away from the history of that technique and you’re no longer applying what other people in other generations and other audiences have, um, built upon. And so I think within each genre of dance, ballet, hip hop, jazz tap, ballroom, Fosse, there is a technique that’s built in the studio.  

And I think, um, in the classroom and the learning process technique is applied to all of those things so that you can say to different generations in the same way, put your hip here, uh, change this port de bra here. And, um, I say port de bras in regard to every style, the carriage of the arms and any genre of dance needs to be something that is identified throughout each and each generation the same way. And then I think that the performance aspect is where we can start to see style evolve. And so we can see how this person, um, and I think improv is a big place, big part of style. So in the training, in your technique where you’ve, you’ve had to do things the same way, sometimes we want to re rebel, we want to reject that rigidity and we start to improv and a style is born based on a technique.  And then that style can grow and codify and it can evolve into its own technique. But I think time is the variable that really distinguishes technique from style. And I think improv is an important part that differentiates style from technique that one is performative. I think style is very performative and it happens. It can happen in the moment and then you can go back and you can quantify that. And I think technique is, uh, the years long process of training and developing what is recognizable about this. And, um, I think it’s really important in 2020 to be super aware of what techniques you’re using, what styles you’re using, who introduced you to those things and how do you pass on the knowledge of where you got that information? Um, I think technique is a part of the past and style is a part of the future.  And we, as the present needs to make sure that we’re giving proper credit to the past and, um, credit also to the future. Um, and making sure that technique, doesn’t just refer to one form of dance. That hip hop has a technique and it has a community and a legacy of people that built that technique. And if you are a stylist that is, is a derivative of that technique, you really need to be able to cite that source. You need to be able to say where your style developed from so that everybody has access to the knowledge that you had access to, and it can help inform them of your style and potentially their own style. And if you are teaching them how to credit those things, then you are a part of their history and they will credit you in what they’ve learned and not to say that everybody deserves credit, but that everybody deserves access to information and crediting gives access. That allows you to say, go look up this person, either on YouTube or in an archive of some kind or in a class that you pay for. And, um, make sure that you’re understanding that you can build technique into a style and you can build style into the technique.  

Dana: You will definitely want to answer this question individually. I think maybe, I don’t know, you do share a lot of similar, similar views, but I, I, I would love to hear an individual interpretation of the following. What is the difference between technique and style?  

Jermaine: I think technique is and understanding and an awareness and an ability to use those understandings, that awareness to contextualize your body. and styles are different forms, styles are different architectures and dynamics qualities as shapes put together, it’s a composition, like a style is a composition, but technique is an understanding of, again, the bias for me, it’s, it goes back to everyone has the body where like the elbow bends the same way, the neck, does its thing. Its not new so when you understand how your body functions thats technique, and then you can apply that understanding to different compositions, whether it be West African or traditional Indian dance or ballet or funk, or house or four, or all the ors, those are just the compositions, the way of framing the body, but the technique is the understanding of how it, yeah. 

Spenser:I love that actually. And here’s, before I get into specifically, again, something I love is it didn’t even occur to me to think of style as not being about the individual, but to be, to think of it as the form, like a style of a form.  So again, just a reminder to keep talking to people and keep hearing how people interpret the things, because they remind you that what you think of as true Isn’t the only way to think of something. I, I also totally agree that technique is, um, a study of function of the body. I think that the form, the form will prescribe the values of the technique, but the idea is that it’s, it’s a research of the function of the body inside of that particular technique. Um, it is, it is the research of, and the understanding of function in your body. And to me, my initial thought was thinking of style as then the interpretation. How do you do that? In what way? Um, what are your values that you are then bringing to the values of that form? That to me is style, but I love this idea. That style is also the style of dance and that you’re also gleaning from your you’re developing your own style by gleaning information from other styles that is kind of blowing my mind right now in need that like you’re not alone out there and to keep looking out and keep absorbing. 

Jermaine:And yeah, it’s the general sense then of technique has to be just going back to what I was saying and understanding of coordination and an understanding how the body functions and works using opposition and weight exchange, falling, rotating, swinging, flexing, extending, all these things that I say I teach as technique. That’s what I call that class.  

Dana: You call it improvisation technique.  

Jermaine:I call it improvisation as technique.  

Dana: Oh, the difference  

Spenser: Talking about how language makes a difference, where words matter and the relationship to those words. Um, because like this style example, my relationship to the word style, it’s different than Jermaine’s and they’re both style. And to remember that different people have different relationships where it’s really going to really define how they’re receiving what is coming up. Yes.  

Dana: Oh, you guys, you’re a dream. Thank you so much for that. 

Dana: My friends, how lucky are we to be having this conversation right now and learning from these incredible humans? So lucky Nick reminds us of the importance of understanding, recognizing, and crediting techniques and styles, Spencer and Jermaine really underline the importance of communicating techniques and styles, and I am into it, but let’s take a second and zoom out for a bit. Now we’re going to get some non dance specific feedback. First, you’ll hear from Nick Whitehouse, who is a lighting designer and CEO of fireplay. Then you’ll hear from Lorin Eric Salm mime and movement coach. Next step is Kat Burns, choreographer extraordinary. And she’s going to keep a particular focus on the actor. And then we wrap up this segment with Iggy Rosenthal, another lighting designer, director of business development for Lightswitch. Enjoy!

Nick: When you create a lighting show you do it on almost a computer. It’s a computer with a lot of faders and buttons, some touch screens to make it faster. And I think, you know, the technique is how you do that fast. So I definitely have a teak to my technique there is how I program and it’s quite different for a lot of people because, um, just to get technical for awhile, you have a whole bunch of faders and you can put cues on faders, or you can put cues in one big list and take more time. So that every little element of every light you can figure out what’s going on, but you also have to remember what’s going on. Cause it doesn’t do anything for you. So I work the second way, everything goes into a list, but that means I’ve got complete control over everything. So instead of a cue, everything happening in the same time, like when you see you execute, every light in the rig could be doing something differently. And that’s the way that I work, which I think is why a lot of this stuff is quite polished because everything’s thought about, so a column might change in a different time to a movement that might change in a different time to an on or off. And that’s what allows me to have the style I think that everything’s some musical because everything is done with split second timing. And that’s, my style is musical. Like we hit all the beats, we hit everything. We emphasize the moves and we go from big to small. I go from big to small just as the music does. So, you know, I think there’s some cool examples of how that works. A lot of the JT stuff, um, where we are hitting drums on, on one particular set of lights, we’re hitting a piano riff on another thing, is that a clap that’s happening on another set of lights and it’s all mixed together in such a way that it feels like it’s all one rather than, Oh, I can see what they’re doing now. You don’t really notice, it’s subtle and that’s definitely the style. Yeah, that’s definitely my style is musical and the big moments to the little moments. It allows me to have it. And it also allows me to do it the human way as well. So, uh, there, there’s, there’s a way there’s a style, um, and a technique of programming where it’s really hard to run it when there’s no time code running. But the way that I program, like all the clubs shows we, we used to do not, there was no time code that I just ran out and I was part of the band having fun. You know, you play along as another musician. So, and that’s the technique that, you know, and the style is how it looks. I think that’s my answer. 

Lorin: The difference between technique and style. Well in, I can speak from mine in any case, I don’t know that I could speak for everyone or all different arts, but in mime, I see the difference as technique is a, a series of methods of principles of rules that, that give a foundation to the work. Um, Marcel Marceau would often describe corporeal mime, the technique of his created by his teacher at Etienne Decroux as being the grammar of mine. Now, corporeal mime is, is more than simply a technical technique at the risk of being redundant. Um, it’s a dramatic philosophy as well, but the, there, there is a, a technique to it that Marceau learned and that Marceau then built upon as the foundation for his work. And he used that technique in a very different way than Decroux used it. Marceau added other influences to his work that came from other places and created his own style of performing. This comes up in, in, in mine too. You know, when Marceau would talk about people being technicians, um, you can, you can demonstrate the technique very well, but then why do we care? I mean, w we, we can sit back and look at that and say, I’d say that was excellent. That was done really, really well. Well, why do I care about showing me, what, why do I want to watch this? And what does it make me think or feel? 

Kat Burns: The major difference between technique and style is motivation. Why are you moving that way? What does it make you feel? What does this style make you feel? And how has that Yeah, I think that’s good. I think you can edit or 

Dana: Work. That was brilliant. I love it. 

Kat: That’s why, that’s why, like, I love working with great actors that are great dancers, because you can emulate and feel a style. Even if you weren’t born in the seventies, you understand what the difference is and why you’re doing a certain move. And if the more you dive into the why, and what’s the motivation, the more like layered and juicy and stylized your work is going to be because you’re not cause it’s, um, yeah, it should, it should feel a certain way when you do it. And then, you know, it’ll obviously emote, you’ll obviously be emoting and acting. 

That’s a good, uh, a good distinction, actually, probably not a ton of emotionality encouraged with  

No technique is like, I don’t know when I judged, I don’t judge dance competitions very much, but when I did, I was like at a certain point, fouettés become boring or like 20, if everyone’s doing 22 fouettés, it’s really boring. So what’s the connection in an in-between and like what, where’s the style. But if someone is acting like this weird scorpion and then bust out this weird turn and they’re like, that’s cool.  

Great on that note, check the gate on Kat Burns 

Dana: What is the difference between technique and style?  

Iggy: Uh, technique is something you’ve trained for and you repeat, it is a learned behavior, style is the flair you put into that learn behavior. And it’s, it’s a personal thing. Anyone can learn the technique, you know, I can learnhow to make pasta. I’m no good at it, but I can learn. Uh, but you know, what’s, uh, what separates great chefs from other chefs are, is their style.  

I like this answer very much. Anyone can learn a technique. Does that mean that you can’t learn style?  

I think you developed style through yourself.  

Ah, not learned but developed. Oh, I love that  

Personal. I mean, I think the moment you, the moment you, you take someone else’s style, then it’s just not, it’s not your style. Then it’s someone else’s technique that you’ve accumulated. What we’re talking about related to what we said, you know, lighting for TV, there’s a million different styles. There’s technique. There’s, there’s a balance between front light and back light and color temperature and talking to the cameras. And I know that, but within that scope of the technique, I can make him look warm. Like I tend to make an artist or artists look a little warmer than other people do. Like I’m not very neutral. I tend to bring some life into their skin. Um, and I play with color temperatures in a way that other designers may not, uh, other people have done. I’ve seen people do incredible stuff that I was like, I would have never thought of doing that. And the end product is, everyone looks good on camera. They just look different and that’s their style.  

Cool, great answers. Yay. I’m thrilled with that. 

Dana: I really am thrilled about that. And now that we’ve really looked at this question extensively from several different points of view, I’d like to give you a couple bite-sized sound bites, starting off with the ever eloquent Dominique Kelly up next is Joe Lantieri. Then the seaweed sisters, Megan Lawson, and Jillian Meyers, and then we’ll tie it all off. Nice and neat with a bow with the fabulous Marguerite Derricks, 

Dominique Kelly, what is the difference between technique and style?

Dominique: The difference between technique and style? Um, technique is a set of steps rudimentary that become building blocks of expression. So I would think technique is your vocabulary and style is the way you compose the sentence, whether it’s in cursive or in emojis or block letters, technique to me, is the letters in the alphabet or the numbers that you need and able to assemble what your style is. I think technique is speaking directly in direct language and style is the flowery poetry in melodic nature of what you’re doing.  

You just gave me like four really good answers to one question and I love them all. That’s great. Thank you.  

Joe: Well, now, you know, that is a deep question, almost unfair, uh, added simplicity. You know, even when I, when I work with like the younger dancers minis in juniors, the 10, 12 year olds, and we talk about techniques, sometimes I often compare technique to riding a bike. It’s that it’s that having the process or the knowledge in your body so that you don’t have to think about it when you get up to do it. And I remind them of what it is to learn how to ride a bike. And at first we all have to really concentrate. And I re, I remember as a kid riding down the bike, riding down the street and almost the training wheel kind of falling off and almost being okay, as long as you’re going straight. And I’ve clearly remember the minute I tried to turn falling over, you know, until you, get the, get the, you master the technique of riding a bike, and then you just go up and go and do it. Right? So to me, the technique is the training. The style is all of what comes from inside of you, that you can’t, it’s bubbling up and coming out and you can’t even help yourself because that is who you, you are inherently, you are truly bringing yourself forward. So that, that’s what makes you unique as a, as a dancer is the fact that you are able to, to transform what you have been given and your training and delivered in a way that is truly unique to yourself. So I do think the two things are distinct.  

Jillian: My first thought, which maybe isn’t an, but more, just a rationalization that comes to mind is it feels like technique is the quantifiable factor. You know, uh, something that is, you can count on that you can count up that maybe is the more structure, you know, of, whatever it is that you’re doing and style is the qualified part. So it’s like the part that maybe can’t be measured. And the part that’s harder to describe the thing that you can exactly count. And, um, I think we’re all finding our ratio, those two things. And I think they both need each other one can’t survive without the other one. But yeah,

Dana: I love that answer. Jillian Meyers. Holy smokes. That was good. 

Megan: Oh, I would, I would. Co-sign that for sure. 

Dana: Seaweed sister piggyback. That’s the seaweed sisters answer, 

Megan: Maybe seaweed the seaweed metaphor. I don’t know if it just came to me, as you were saying, the other ones, um, Technique, like is the foundation the Yes. Then, and is the style, the spin on it perhaps? 

Dana: I love that. 

Jillian: That’s so good Magoo 

Megan: Technique, but what else? And what are you going to do with it?  

Dana: Marguerite’s to you? What is the difference between technique and style?

Marguerite: Technique is something that you work hard for. Style is something you’re born with 

The end.  

Well, my friends that is it. And just when you thought it couldn’t possibly get more concise, just when you thought you couldn’t have a clearer picture or at very least a well-rounded view of the difference between technique and style, I will leave you with this. My absolute favorite answer to this question. And it’s how I answer it still comes from a friend who is a doctor by day and drag queen by night, a yoga guru and inventor. And so, so, so, so much more. My friend Scott Lyons, when prompted with this question did not flinch did not take a beat. Didn’t even take a breath. He quickly responded. Oh, that’s easy. Technique is the what? And style is the, so what, so what, so why should I care? So what does that mean? So what does that make me feel? So what technique is the what? And style is the,  So what that’s good work? 

I like that too. And that is where I am going to leave it today. We’ll put a pin in this conversation, but I am dying to hear your answer to this question, DM or tag us on Instagram, @wordsthatmovemepodcast with your answer to the question. What is the difference between technique and style? And don’t forget email WTMMpodcast@gmail.com. If you’re interested in learning more about our community membership, there are definitely advantages to pre-registering it. So do not wait, do keep it funky. I’ll talk to you soon. Bye. 

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