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Episode 06 — Aerobics in the Age of Data Sprawl               

Heidi Alexander

Episode Transcript

What does it mean to feel and choose? What does a movement language mean in an age of mass sedation? How do we dance synchronously when we are apart? How do you teach embodied practices when the interaction of bodies is reduced to bit flips and screen shots? How does our individual health and wellbeing impact our ability to be accountable to the larger collective. How does shared movement language bind and liberate the collective and the individual?

This episode explores the pedagogy and practice of Pony Sweat, a dance aerobics practice led by Emilia Richardson Valiente in so-called Los Angeles, CA. We observe the practice through the lens of remote instruction and conversation to examine the technical, ephemeral, emotional, cognitive and temporal nature of the practice and its teaching, and explore conversations surrounding the nature of communication and choice as related to movement practices.


Heidi Alexander is an M.Arch graduate of the UCLA School of Architecture & Urban Design. She holds a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Field Studies with an emphasis in linguistics from the University of California, Berkeley. She is the founder and leader of the Earth Girl Helen Brown Center For Planetary Intelligence Band, a 60+ member music and arts collective based in Los Angeles, CA. Co-Founding/Managing Editor of the UCLA A.UD Publication POOL-LA and UCLA Sustainable LA Grand Challenges Powell Policy Fellow, her research focus resides in the intersection of urban energy systems and land use policy. An Earthist by birth Heidi currently works in the Facilities Engineering & Design group at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory where her focus is on information management.  


  • Pony Sweat online class, November 2020
    • Songs:
      • Glory- Cold Cave
      • Tesko Suicide - Sneaker Pimps
      • Owner of a Lonely Heart - Yes
      • Follow the Leaders - Killing Joke
      • Love Don’t Cost a Thing - Jennifer Lopez
      • Identity - X-ray Specs
      • Add This Song - Gus Gus
      • Piggy - NIN
      • Indestructible - Robyn
      • U Can Dance - DJ Hell
      • Caught Up in the Rapture - Anita Baker
      • Guns of Brixton - the Clash
      • It Must Have Been Love - Roxette
      • The Dancer - PJ Harvey