After 43 years at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY, Briansky Ballet Center has moved its summer ballet program to the campus of Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, MA.
Formerly Briansky Saratoga Ballet Center, the program was the first in summer residence at Skidmore (the college currently hosts two dance companies each summer) but had to move due to a scheduling conflict. The center was on hiatus in 2009 while founders Oleg Briansky and his wife Mireille Briane searched for a new location. They selected Mt. Holyoke of the Five College Dance Department because of its intimate size and world-class facility.
“We want people to know we are back in action. We have a large number of students who are guaranteed to return,” Briansky says. “I have very good feelings about the upcoming year.”
In previous summers, Briansky Ballet Center has attracted students from all over the U.S., Mexico, Japan, Europe and South America. This year’s program will run June 27–July 25, with three classes per day, five days a week, in ballet technique, pointe, variations and Broadway theater dance. For more: www.briansky.org
Photo of Mount Holyoke College students, courtesy Briansky.
Four incredible educators: Joanne Chapman, Claudio Muñoz, Pamela VanGilder and Kathleen Isaac foster their students' love of dance, whether instilling artistry, offering rigorous training or giving special needs students an outlet through movement.
When Jennie Somogyi retired from New York City Ballet, she found herself in high demand as a teacher. Parents called, texted and persisted. "I don't even know how some of them got my contact information," she says with a laugh. But Somogyi, who departed from NYCB in 2015 after a 22-year career, hadn't made any definitive plans for the next stage of her life. "I just like to see how things move me," she says. She discovered, though, that she enjoyed the process of giving private lessons and seeing the rapid progress students could make. Over time, she realized that teaching was something she wanted rather than needed.
Does your studio slow down when the weather warms up? If you don't offer a summer session, June through August can be a cash-flow challenge. One popular—and easy—strategy is to offer weeklong camps instead. We spoke to three professionals to learn how they make summer camp work.
This week Ballet Hispánico launched its first ChoreoLaB workshop, a summer intensive intended to better prepare aspiring professional dancers—with more than just excellent technique. Artistic director Eduardo Vilaro wanted to create a program that bridges the school and the company, to help dancers transitioning into the professional world and better hone their skills.
The language of Mind Body Dancer is dynamic. "Action words stimulate change in your students," says yoga teacher TaraMarie Perri. "Try 'pour,' 'push' and 'experience' –not 'feel' or 'do or don't' Those words don't mean anything." Here, Perri and dancer Maggie Ronan use the active MBD language to demonstrate yoga poses used as a warm-up in many dance classes. While practicing, be sure to inhale and exhale in steady cycles.