is a method of recording movement that is closely related to Labanotation.
In fact, many notators consider them subgroups of the same system. They
use most of the same symbols and terminology, have a similar format,
and both record fundamental components, such as direction, action, dynamics,
and timing, that are found in all styles and forms of movement.
The main difference between the two scripts is the type of information
they communicate. Labanotation gives a literal, all-inclusive, detailed
description of movement, so it can be reproduced exactly as it was performed
or conceived. In contrast, Motif Notation depicts just core elements
and leitmotifs; it highlights what stands out, is most important, or
is most impressive. A Motif score might convey the overall structure
of a dance improvisation, what one should focus on when learning how
to swing a golf club, the primary movement features of a character in
a play, or the intent of a person's movement in a therapy session.
An example of Motif notation is shown below. The notation indicates
the salient components of a dance sequence; other aspects of the movement
are left to the discretion of the performer. For instance, the notation
states that the first part of the sequence is about turning. The manner
of turning is open to interpretation. It might be done on one foot or
while sitting on the floor, using a free or controlled quality, finishing
with the body facing the front or the back of the room, or with some
other variable. All of these interpretations would be valid, as long
as turning is the movement's focus.
The notation is written going up the page, i.e., first there is turning,
then flexing, then extending, and so forth. The length of the symbols
indicates the timing of the movement; longer indications have a greater
time value than shorter indications.