We’re still buzzing with energy from our Dance Teacher Summit this weekend. From the special session for studio owners on Thursday to the Closing Summit panel on Sunday, incredible material was shared. Thank you dance teachers—you inspire us every month!

Here are my favorite Dance Teacher Summit 2014 moments:

• The absolute silence of a packed Grand Ballroom while Twyla Tharp’s class performed 11 sections of The One Hundreds, Tharp’s work from 1970 that is made of 100 11-second sequences, separated by 4-second pauses. The work is performed with no music, and on Saturday, you could hear the sound of the dancers’ feet brushing the floor as they slid in unison into a low lunge.

• Tharp’s generosity at the end of class, when she gave each teacher the 11-second sequence they performed in the final showing. “I want you to consider it yours,” she said to the group.

• Franco De Vita, when accepting the Dance Teacher Lifetime Achievement Award, demonstrated his wry sense of humor with an anecdote about becoming a U.S. citizen. He said he was sure that he’d lost his accent and now sounded like an American. We’re all happy this is not the case.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

• When she accepted the Dance Teacher Award for Higher Education, Karyn Tomczak called out her former teacher Tom Ralabate, who received the same award in 2007.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

• When I turned around at the A.C.E. Awards to find seated behind me the actress Georgia Engel. She’s so recognizable from her role as Georgette on the “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” in the 1970s. She was De Vita’s guest, along with Charles Kelley, the acro master teacher.

• When Judy Rice, during her pointe class, took out a Sharpie and drew circles on the insides of her knees and ankles to demonstrate the very specific placement required for coupé and passé. “Someday I’ll just get tattoos,” she said.

• When Rice cued up the sexy music of Gershwin (Concert in F, Adagio) for centerwork. Her playlist also included “One” from A Chorus Line—so fun! It’s all on her Behind Barres, Volume VI, By Request.

• The moment Gil Stroming announced the second runner-up for the Capezio A.C.E. Award. Emma Portner stepped forward and visibly fought back tears for a second or two. Then she regained her composure and accepted her award for Let Go, Or Be Dragged. We couldn’t help but fall in love with her. Here's a sample of her work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

• And of course we all love the suspense and excitement when the A.C.E. Award winner is announced. Here’s Talia Favia’s reaction to hearing her name. Check out a video clip of the work here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

• Mandy Moore’s Sunday afternoon class was beyond full. She’s become such a big name since Dance Teacher featured her on the cover in October 2009 (as she was choreographing the opening number for the Dance Teacher Summit fashion show that year). And at the Closing Summit panel, she reminisced with her first teacher, Kim DelGrosso of Centerstage Performing Arts Studio in Utah. Kim said Mandy was born with an old dance soul. She was a clear talent from day one.

Mark your calendar to join us in Long Beach, California, July 28–30, 2015!

all photos by Kyle Froman for Dance Teacher magazine.

Dancer Health

The Feldenkrais Method is a somatic technique created by Moshe Feldenkrais in the 1950s. The method has two parts: hands-on sessions with a Feldenkrais teacher (Functional Integration) or group classes comprised of verbal cues (Awareness Through Movement).

Mary Armentrout, a dance teacher, choreographer and Feldenkrais practitioner, shares three ways that this somatic practice can bolster your students' training.

Keep reading... Show less
Your Studio

Oversexualizing young kids has been a hot topic among dance teachers in recent years. It's arguably the most controversial topic teachers and studio owners are faced with. Deciding which choreography, music or costumes are appropriate—or not—isn't always black and white and can be easily overlooked. Is showing the midriff too much for minis? Is this choreography too provocative? Is this popular song too suggestive for a competition piece? The questions can seem endless with no clear objective answers. Until now.

Keep reading... Show less
Dancer Health
To make dancers stronger and less injury-prone, Burns Wilson suggest adding floor barre or conditioning classes. Photo courtesy of Burns Wilson

With a career spanning 30-plus years in the dance field, Anneliese Burns Wilson has cultivated a unique perspective on health and injury prevention for dancers. From teaching ballet to teaching anatomy, she then founded ABC for Dance, which publishes dance-teaching materials. Now through research for her next book, which will focus on training the female adolescent dancer, she's delving even deeper into topics many dance teachers have overlooked.

Keep reading... Show less
Erdmann (left) on set for "Hairspray Live" (courtesy of Erdmann)

When Wicked ensemble member Kelli Erdman was training at Westlake Dance Center in Seattle, Washington, her teacher Kirsten Cooper taught her that focussed transitions would be pivotal to her success as a dancer. Now as a professional, she applies this advice to her daily performances, asserting that she will never let the details of her dancing get blurry.

Keep reading... Show less
Teachers & Role Models
Khobdeh dancing Taylor's Speaking In Tongues. Photo courtesy of PTDC

For Parisa Khobdeh, music does more than set the tone for a piece—it's enabled her to connect with movement. And once she joined Paul Taylor Dance Company in 2003, Taylor's body of work deepened this connection. "His choreography showed me the music, the architecture and the space," she says. "I now see the music."

Keep reading... Show less
Dance Buzz

We haven't been able to stop watching Lil' Mushroom since she popped and locked her way into Ellen's heart last week. We know you've got a long night of teaching ahead, and this is the dance inspiration you need to get you through. Check it out and tell us what you think about her killer moves over on our Facebook page! (She starts blowing minds at about 2:16.)

Keep reading... Show less
How-To

Because the chassé is often neglected during the execution of this traveling step, Judy Rice asks her students to do a minimum of a six-inch chassé before transitioning into the pas de bourrée. She encourages dancers to pay close attention to their shoulders and hips in effacé, too. "Kids tend to open it up. They look like they're fencing," she says. "You don't want that." Both shoulders and hip bones should be facing the corner.

Keep reading... Show less

Sponsored

Videos

Sponsored

mailbox

Get DanceTeacher in your inbox

Win It!

Sponsored