Dance teacher organizations—where to team up, share ideas, and be heard
The Massachusetts Dance Education Organization
The Massachusetts Dance Education Organization (MADEO) was organized three years ago to fulfill the need for a professional organization for the state’s dance educators.
Dr. Nancy H. Moses, president, says that while there are several active and effective organizations that address various aspects of dance in Massachusetts, there wasn’t one organization that met the professional needs of all dance educators in all areas. Many dance educators were active in the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO) but still felt the need for something more local. “A state affiliate of NDEO seemed to be the right answer, so MADEO was formed,” she says.
Moses, chair of Theater and Dance at Bridgewater [MA] State University, initiated the organization with the help of board members Danielle Bazinet, arts department chair/performing arts teacher at The Sage School; Jeanne Traxler, director of Peanut Butter & Jelly Dance Company; Meghan McLyman, professor of dance at Salem State University; Erica Sigal, creative movement specialist in the Cambridge Public Schools; Laurie Healey, owner of Dance Dimension School of Dance and Theater; and Cynthia Nazzaro, professor of dance at Springfield College.
By providing local opportunities for professional development and networking, MADEO strives to bridge the gaps between public, private, and commercial dance programs and serve students in K–12, higher education, and adult learners.
Since the group is still young and fairly small (62 members), board members have agreed that collaborating with both national groups—such as NDEO—and local dance-related organizations would be a wise strategy, Moses says. Teachers who belong to MADEO also belong to NDEO and have access to all the national organization’s programs, such as online community forums and professional development courses as well as job postings for professionals.
On the local level, MADEO’s first conference was held in coordination with Bridgewater State University’s dance program; it included master classes, conversations, and idea sharing. The next annual meeting was held in collaboration with José Mateo Ballet Theatre’s Dance for World Community program (based in Cambridge, Massachusetts), and featured performances, master classes, and a “Talk About Dance” open discussion.
This year MADEO and the Dance Alliance of Rhode Island held a joint conference at Bridgewater State University with master classes, teacher workshops, a participant concert, and a panel discussion on trends in children’s dance.
A new addition has been the creation of the Presidential Award for Outstanding Contributions to Dance Education, which will be given annually to dance educators who deserve recognition for exceptional service. Last year’s recipient was Peanut Butter & Jelly Dance Company artistic director Jeanne Traxler who, Moses says, “has served the profession tirelessly with quality programming and consistent service to dance education.”
MADEO is seeking additional collaborators for future programming. For more information, visit massachusettsdanceeducationorganization.com.
Associated Dance Teachers of New Jersey 800.825.0933; associateddanceteachers.com
Event: The Fundamentals of Teaching Dance workshop
When: July 31-August 1; 9am-4pm
Where: Mary Lou Hale’s School of Dance, 135 North Beverwyck Rd., Lake Hiawatha, NJ
What: Subjects to be discussed include: syllabuses for children’s work, ballet, jazz, and tap, plus anatomy, music theory, terminology, choreography concepts, teaching hints, and dance education insights. Open to teachers ages 19 and up, studio owners, and studio directors.
daCi USA daciusa.org
Event: 2012 Global daCi/WDA Dance Summit: Dance, Young People, and Change
When: July 14-20
Where: Taipei National University of the Arts, Taipei, Taiwan
What: Young people, parents, educators, and others from across the world gather to reflect on key issues and point to future directions for dance in young people’s lives. Includes workshops, master classes, and more than 300 presentations, lecture-demonstrations, and performances by young people and professional dancers. Visit daCiWDAinTaiwan.org for details.
Dance Educators of America 800.229.3868; deadance.com
Event: Teacher Training and Certification
When: July 2-7
Where: University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV
What: A multi-dimensional program of study enhancing the knowledge and teaching techniques of dance professionals open to DEA members, non-members, and assistant teachers ages 18 and older. Registration deadline May 18.
Event: Ballet Seminar
When: July 10-15
Where: Flamingo Las Vegas, 3555 Las Vegas Blvd. South, Las Vegas, NV
What: A workshop devoted to classical ballet and related subjects for serious ballet students ages 10 to 18, designed to provide an overview of the time, work, and schedule required by a classical dance career.
Dance Masters of America 718.225.4013; dma-national.org
Event: 128th National Convention
When: July 1-7
Where: Anaheim Marriott Hotel, 700 West Convention Way, Anaheim, CA
What: Annual convention including ballet and jazz intensives for students, workshop classes for teachers and students, solo title and performing arts competition, scholarship auditions, and social events.
New York State Dance Education Association 212.560.2309; nysdea.org
Event: Toscana Summer Dance
When: July 9-29
Where: Florence and Palazzuolo sul Senio, Italy
What: Three weeks of intensive dance training with international dance artists, master teachers, and choreographers. Classes in yoga, Pilates, ballet, modern, and the Italian language, plus special weekend and/or evening workshops. Open to intermediate and advanced dancers ages 17 and up.
Royal Academy of Dance 661.336.0160; radusa.org
Event: USA 2012 International Summer School: Two-Week Performance Course
When: July 9-21
Where: California State University, Long Beach, CA
What: Students work with professional dancers and teachers to create original choreography in preparation for a public performance. Classes in ballet, repertoire, modern, and musical theater.
Southern Association of Dance Masters 217.496.2725; sadm.org
Event: Summer Convention
When: July 12-15
Where: Hilton Memphis, 939 Ridge Lake Blvd., Memphis, TN
What: Annual convention of classes, with a ballet forum, Southern Stars competition, and banquet with floorshow.