2016 | 12 | December

December 2016 | EditorSpeak

“Artistry: Mystery vs Transparency” by Cheryl A. Ossola: Frederick Wiseman’s 1995 film Ballet is a unique perspective on the lives of artists, and in remembering it, I thought about the conversations teachers might have with students—conversations about artistry, how we perceive it, and what enhances or impairs those perceptions.

“Never Stop Dancing” by Tamsin Nutter: The hours I spend sitting at a desk make me feel creaky; a recent “big birthday” turned my thoughts to using my life stages wisely and well. Perhaps that’s why Keep Dancing, a lovely 2010 film portrait of then-90-year-old dance icons Marge Champion and Donald Saddler, has been on my mind.

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December 2016 | On My Mind

Let’s imagine that one town has two very good schools, and let’s say that they are roughly equal in size and that each offers a quality dance education. What could make one school stand out above the other?

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December 2016 | Ballet Scene | Crossing Boundaries

by Heather Wisner

When My-Linh Le watches turfers at work, she sees the grace, fluidity, and balance of ballet—no small feat, considering that turfers often perform their style of street dance aboard San Francisco Bay Area BART trains, busking for donations in cramped and unsteady spaces. “Turfers tend to get [up] on their toes,” she says, “and they like to do spins.”

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December 2016 | FYI

What’s up in the dance community
❱ Jacob’s Pillow Four-Season Studio
❱ Gift Leads to Doctoral Program in Dance Education
❱ It’s Good to Be the Ballerina Boss
❱ Hip-Hop Arrives at NYPL

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December 2016 | Page Turners

Books of note (new and not)
1.America Dancing: From the Cakewalk to the Moonwalk
2.Stompin’ at the Savoy: The Story of Norma Miller
3.Physics and the Art of Dance: Understanding Movement, 2nd ed.
4.Song and Dance Man

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December 2016 | 2 Tips for Ballet Teachers | Two Rules for Male Partners

by David Arce

Tip 1 In partnering classes, the first thing I tell male students is that their most important job is to make their partners look good. Only after their partners are comfortable and balanced should male dancers consider their own poses.

Tip 2 I tell male students to keep their hands low on their partners’ hips—the lower the better.

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December 2016 | Onstage Nationwide

From winter competitions to summer national galas to fall intensives, there are exciting learning and growing opportunities for dancers of any age. In our annual listing, you’ll find the right fit from among nearly 125 competitions and conventions, ranging from old favorites to intriguing new options.

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December 2016 | College Close-Ups | University of Utah

The University of Utah School of Dance, in Salt Lake City, offers separate degree programs in ballet and modern dance and attracts students from across the world. While honoring the legacies of these two dance forms, which the University began offering more than 60 years ago, the school maintains an environment of open inquiry that encourages questioning, risk-taking, and sensitivity.

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December 2016 | Grassroots to Mainstream

by Steve Sucato

The occasion was Regional Dance America’s 2016 Northeast Festival, held June 2 to 4, 2016. It was a homecoming of sorts—in 1960 Erie had hosted the second Northeast Regional Ballet Association Festival (NERBA, now known as Regional Dance America). And that predecessor of this year’s event was a seminal moment in the grassroots regional dance movement in the United States.

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December 2016 | Raw and Awesome

by Joseph Carman

As a dance form, hip-hop emerged from the streets, and its spontaneity, energy, and individuality reinforce its appeal. So when you place hip-hop in concert form, as choreographer Lorenzo “Rennie” Harris has done successfully for 25 years, it’s vital to retain that freshness while instilling it with discipline and stagecraft. Enter Rennie Harris Awe-Inspiring Works (RHAW), a second company to the acclaimed Rennie Harris Puremovement.

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December 2016 | Jazz Hands-On

by Karen White

Questions about what jazz dance is, where it lives, who does it and why drove discussions at the conference, Jazz Dance: Roots and Branches in Practice, held July 21 to August 3 in Newport, Rhode Island, hosted by the dance program at Salve Regina University. Hailed by attendees as a rare opportunity for educators, historians, choreographers, and master teachers to come together in celebration of jazz dance, the conference addressed not only the jazz lexicon but issues of race, relatability, and respect that impact how the art form is taught and viewed.

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December 2016 | 2 Tips for Tap Teachers | Across the Floor and Around the Room

by Thelma Goldberg

Tip 1 Small, stationary footwork is important to master, but it’s equally important that tap dancers learn to move rhythmically across the floor and around the room.

Tip 2 Moving side to side, forward and back, or in circles and squares will add variety and fun to your tap classes and help keep your students on their toes.

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December 2016 | Power of the Page

by Josie Bray and Richard Kent

Though journaling may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of training dancers, teachers across the country use writing as a tool to help their dance students improve both technique and performance.

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December 2016 | Champs and Change Agents

by Bonner Odell

Backstage at the 2016 World of Dance competition in Orlando, Florida, Davina Pasiewicz gathered Chicago-based hip-hop crew The Puzzle League in a pre-performance huddle. “This is not about winning a trophy,” Pasiewicz, the crew’s executive director, told the 35 dancers. “This is about communicating a message bigger than ourselves. If we accomplish that, we will have already won.”

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December 2016 | Hip-Hop Dance

In this issue we crisscross the country with stories about innovative hip-hop projects. In Philadelphia, Rennie Harris Awe-Inspiring Works teaches dancers hip-hop technique and history. In Chicago, The Puzzle League’s advocacy-based choreography educates and entertains. And in Oakland, Mud Water Project blends ballet with turfing, a local street dance style.

Plus, a National Dance Education Organization conference devoted to jazz dance; Regional Dance America’s Northeast Festival’s present and momentous past; journaling as a learning and self-empowerment tool for dancers and dance students; and our annual list of competitions and conventions.

Get in the groove!

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