You know you’re living in the future when dancers in Amsterdam can appear live onstage in a performance happening thousands of miles away in Toronto. Stream was presented as part of the Assemblée Internationale, a weeklong conference hosted by Canada's National Ballet School. Dancers at the AI performed and interacted with a screen projection of students at the Dutch National Ballet Academy. Participants in Holland constructed the same setup, streaming a video of the AI students in real time. “It broadens their horizons,” choreographer Shaun Amyot told CBC News. “It requires them to be in the moment, really present, and intensifies their concentration, because I will ask them to physically react to what they see on the screen in the moment.” How’s that for keeping ballet current?
Virtual dance pen pals at a sister studio could be an inspiring and collaborative project for your students. Click here for tips on integrating video chat into your classroom.
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This Sunday, master ballet teacher Finis Jhung turns 80. After a career as a soloist for both San Francisco Ballet and the Joffrey and a principal for Harkness Ballet, Jhung carved out a unique place for himself as a ballet teacher in New York City. He's coached the boys of Billy Elliot: The Musical, developed a popular video and DVD how-to series and STILL teaches seven classes a week at the Ailey Extension. He's graced the pages of this magazine to offer his time-honored wisdom again and again, and he's currently working on a memoir. (We can't wait to read it.) Happy birthday, Finis!
Since 1989, tap dancers have been celebrating National Tap Dance Day (NTDD) on and around May 25, the birthday of tap dance legend Bill "Bojangles" Robinson. This year, prime events are happening in Philadelphia, New York and Chicago.
When you think of a major basketball team's dancers or cheerleaders, you probably picture the Laker Girls—scantily clad, with shiny curls cascading down their backs. You definitely don't picture a group of 15 40-years-old-and-up "seniors," mean-mugging and ripping off breakaway pants. But the New York Liberty's Timeless Torches do exactly that, and they routinely bring down the house during halftime at the WNBA games where they perform.
The exhibit Radical Bodies: Anna Halprin, Simone Forti, Yvonne Rainer in California and New York, 1955–1972 is filled with exhibits, performances and conferences honoring the three postmodern dance living legends.