May 25, 2015 § Leave a comment
North Carolina Dance Festival starts touring again in September, but that doesn’t mean that the Dance Project is sitting still for the next few months! We’ve got quite a bit lined up for the summer months!
- 15: Start of Summer Classes at Dance Project: The School at City Arts
- 16, 23, 30: Summer Modern Master Class series taught by Amy Beasley
- 20: Contemporary Jazz Master Class with Lauren Trollinger Joyner
- Dancing and Drumming Workshop at Brown Rec Center.
- 7, 14, 21, 28: Summer Modern Master Class series taught by Amy Beasley (July 7) and Renay Aumiller (July 14, 21, 28)
- 8: Contemporary Hip-Hop Master Class with Ron West
- 4, 11: Summer Modern Master Class series taught by Renay Aumiller
- 15: Last Day of Summer Classes
We’ve got so much going on this summer leading up to our 25th season if NCDF! We look forward to dancing with you and your family this summer and seeing you at the North Carolina Dance Festival starting in September!
May 11, 2015 § Leave a comment
On June 25th, the NC Dance Festival and the American Dance Festival will collaborate for the 3rd time with the “Here and Now” show as part of the ADF Season. The goal of “Here and Now” is to celebrate the professional dance and choreography being made right here in North Carolina.
This year, four artists will be featured at the “Here and Now” show in Durham: Anna Barker, Shaleigh Comerford, Kristen Jeppsen Groves, and Karola Luttringhaus. We’re thrilled to celebrate these four choreographers chosen to perform on the ADF/NCDF concert, but there are so many other dancers and choreographers in NC worth celebrating, too! We want to highlight dance in all its NC glory, happening “here and now.”
So, beginning in June, we at NCDF want to see how you dance here and now! At 6:25 any day between June 1 and 22, take a picture of yourself or others dancing, share on your favorite social media site (Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram) and tag it #herenow625. Each week we will gather all pictures that have been tagged #herenow625 and let the public vote on their favorite picture. The overall favorite for the month will be featured on our social media accounts and awarded a pair tickets to the concert in Durham on June 25!
Come join us as we celebrate modern dance in North Carolina! How do you dance here and now? What does it mean to create work here and now? We can’t wait for you to share your pictures and ideas with us using #herenow625.
Keep an eye out on the blog for artist profiles of “Here & Now” artists, coming soon!!
April 13, 2015 § Leave a comment
Dance Project wouldn’t be what it is without the wonderful guidance of our Board of Directors. As part of our “A Day in the Life” series, we wanted to take a moment and introduce them to you. Here’s our board!
I am still involved in the dance world today, though in a slightly different capacity. I love movement and working in the studio every now and again, but mostly I am involved in dance through advocacy and appreciation. I currently serve as President on Dance Project’s Board of Directors. This is a brand new role for me but the professionals with the Board make it fun, interesting, and most importantly—meaningful. I am grateful for this opportunity.
G. Alex Smith, Vice PresidentG. Alex Smith holds an MFA from the Hollins University/American Dance Festival, a BFA in Performance and Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and also studied within the pre-professional programs at both the Virginia School of the Arts, and BalletMet Columbus.
In 2006, he founded G. Alex Moves to support his artistic endeavors, and to promote collaborative and interdisciplinary projects in the performing arts. He has presented his choreographic works in numerous venues, including the Cunningham Studio in New York, and at the American Dance Festival. As an independent choreographer he continues to make dances and perform. He has held professor positions in dance departments internationally. Alex is the Executive Artistic Director of G. Alex Moves. This is his first year on the board of Dance Project.
One thing I love about Dance Project is the Festival tour. The tour’s stop in Boone, where I live, is an important element to the ecology of the dance community in our region. It gives our small community a sense of connection to the city centers across the state. As an artist I have participated in the tour on many occasions over the years. The opportunity to interact with other artists at each stop is an invaluable experience.
Ira Trollinger, Treasurer
When I was given an opportunity to serve on the board of the Dance Project I gladly accepted. I have grown in my knowledge of modern dance by interacting with my fellow members on the board. I enjoy learning about their experiences in dance performance and am amazed at their expertise. I am happy to give of my time because I truly believe in the mission of the Dance Project and know that the program can benefit all who take the challenge and participate in such an experience.
When I first started to perform in the Triad area, I was always inspired by Jan’s choreography. It had always been a goal of mine to dance for her. I was then able to have her as a professor in graduate school at UNC-G. My goal was reached, I was able to dance for her and now help her with her goals for the Dance Project. She has helped to mold me into the teacher, artist, dancer, performer and filmmaker that I am. I am so thankful for her presence in my life. My first experience with the Dance Project was performing in the NC Dance Festival back in 1999. I have been involved ever since.
Kelly Swindell, Secretary
Kelly Swindell has been a dancer for most of her life. Trained at the NC School of the Arts (now UNCSA) and UNC-Greensboro, Kelly was a founding member of the Van Dyke Dance Group and Gamble/Van Dyke Dance. Kelly Swindell has danced for Jan Van Dyke for nearly 28 years, first as a student and later as a professional. She is grateful to have had such a long tenure with Jan and the Van Dyke Dance Group and its various iterations over the years. She has a M.F.A. in Performing Arts Management from UNCSA and a B.A. in History from UNCG. When not performing, Kelly is the Assistant Brand Manager at Biscuitville FRESH SOUTHERN and a mom to two creative beasts, Jasper Z. the illustrator and Sam the tuba man.
In Kelly’s words:
Fun fact: I once was invited to the stage to dance along with The Smiths during the last 30 minutes of their second show ever in the United States in Boston in 1985. Yes, I love live music. And have a passion for Shakespeare, the theatre, slaying ivy and learning to be a better cook.
Our other esteemed board members include Laverne Bass and E. E. Balcos. We appreciate all the hard work they do for the Dance Project!
Want to know more about the board and how you can help out the Dance Project? Head to our website to learn more!!
April 8, 2015 § Leave a comment
The NC Dance Festival (NCDF) is pleased to celebrate its 25th season in the Fall! To mark this milestone we plan expanded performances and community outreach across the state during the 2015 season.
Each year, NC-based professional choreographers are chosen in a blind adjudication process to participate in the annual NCDF statewide tour. The artists selected for 2015 are:
- Anna Barker (Durham)
- Amy Love Beasley (Winston-Salem)
- Thomas DeFrantz (Durham)
- Karola Luttringhaus (Wilmington)
- Jan Van Dyke (Greensboro)
These artists will perform at the three sites that started it all: Raleigh, Boone, and the founding site, Greensboro. Local artists from each of these cities will perform in concert with the touring choreographers, and then the visiting choreographers will teach and perform throughout the communities associated with each Festival weekend. Get to know these artists through our series of outreach activities, including pre- and post-show talks, free community artist talks, and more
Mark Your Calendar:
- Raleigh: September 19
- Boone: October 23-24
- Greensboro: November 13-14
To celebrate this landmark season, there will be a special performance in Greensboro featuring “veteran” choreographers of the NCDF: founders Jan Van Dyke and John Gamble, Gerri Houlihan, Robin Harris, Martha Connerton, and Asheville Contemporary Dance Theatre –all artists who performed with the Festival in the early years. Additional special activities in Greensboro will be announced as the season approaches.
April 1, 2015 § Leave a comment
Alaina: I love interning with Dance Project! I really feel like the work I get to do every day makes a difference for the organization. My days are full of brainstorming, data analysis, marketing work… Anything really! It’s been a great supplement to what I’m learning in school–as an artist, it’s equally as important to be great at my craft as it is to be able to do the administrative work. Working here has helped me get better at both! -Alaina Monts, Intern
10:45- The first thing I do when I come into the office is check all of our social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram). I’ll update all of the pages, and look for ways that we can interact with other online accounts.
12:30- There are quite a few activities that I’ve been working on for a while and can continuously come back to if there isn’t too much other work that needs to be done. This week I’m looking up pictures to accompany the #moderndancemonday posts that go up weekly on the Van Dyke Dance Group’s page.
1:45- Once a week I go straight from working with the festival to working with the school. I’ll usually grab a quick lunch while I check the voicemail and take down any necessary messages.
2:00- Lots of the work I do for the school is data entry and analysis. We always keep track of the monthly attendance averages for each class; that’s primarily what I’m working on today. It’s time-consuming but necessary work.
4:00- I usually draft our monthly newsletter. I do most of the formatting and write most of the content, but I’ll always get it double checked before it’s sent off to all of the parents and students. As soon as I’m done with this, I’ll head to class–one of the great perks of interning here is that I can take any of the classes I want at no charge!
March 17, 2015 § Leave a comment
As Assistant School Director, my main priority is to support the School Director in anything that she needs. That includes keeping up with the books, helping to develop curriculum, and being a parent liaison. I love being able to come to Dance Project each day for work because it lets me get the best of both worlds–the work I do is equally administrative and artistic. I hope you enjoy seeing what an average day in my life looks like!
–Milanda McGinnis, Assistant School Director
10:00–When I come in, I check the studio notebooks and take any payments that have been received in class. One of the most major parts of my job is to keep up with all the money that comes in and out of the school. This means writing the checks for Jan to sign, reminding parents when monthly tuition is due, and keeping up with the bills (not exciting, but definitely necessary!). I try and get everyday payment things out of the way as soon as I come in so I can focus larger amounts of time to big projects.
12:00–I have a meeting with Lauren to go over some new information about some upcoming marketing. It’s definitely important for us to make sure that the projects we do reach a wide audience and having a solid marketing plan will help us to be successful.
1:45–I’ve got a little downtime, so I’m looking for new and innovative teaching methods that help supplement our curriculum. I want the dancers that I teach to leave the studio knowing everything that they can about as many styles as possible to prepare them for college and beyond.
2:30–More teacher prep! The Teen Performance Company just had their first performance of the semester at Pillow Pops and it went great! Now it’s time to learn some new choreography. I like to spend some time in my day going over the choreography that I plan to teach tonight so that when it’s time for instruction, I’m fully prepared and can give 100%.
4:45–One of my favorite parts of the day is when I get to teach. I love working with my students! They’re dedicated and hardworking and getting to see their improvement each week is a joy to me. Today I’m teaching Modern III for ages 13-18 and Teen Performance Company. In Modern we’re working on getting ready for the Spring Showcase where the dancers will be performing a dance inspired by mermaids in the sea. It’s got an aquatic, flow-y feel to it. I’m excited for the finished product!