This May, Judson-era choreographer Aileen Passloff celebrates her 40th anniversary as a faculty member with Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.
Originally trained in ballet, Passloff became known for her work with the postmodern choreographers of Judson Dance Theater in the 1960s. In addition to teaching dance at Bard, Passloff conducts interdisciplinary composition workshops for young writers, dancers, painters and filmmakers as part of the Bard High School Early College Program in Manhattan.
To celebrate her work, the Bard dance program is sponsoring performances May, 1–2, at the Richard B. Fisher Center for Performing Arts. Students and alum Arthur Aviles will perform Passloff’s Nocturne for Bob (2001), Paseo (2005) and a dance she made in the 1970s to one of Erik Satie’s Gymnopédies. Passloff herself will
perform in a premiere by Toby Amour, To Be Continued. The concert will be repeated on June 4 at Judson Memorial Church in New York City. Passloff will also receive the Bardian Award, presented to a distinguished member of the Bard community.
“When I look back on the last 40 years,” Passloff says, “what most excites me are the nifty kids I’ve had a chance to work with—their ambitions, their energy and their passion about work. They’re cheeky and outspoken. I like having people who challenge me.”
As the director of dance at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Belmont, Massachusetts, Istvan Cserven organizes the biannual student showcases, prepares dancers for competition and trains new instructors. On top of all that, he teaches the upper-level technique classes. A former ballroom champion in Hungary, he is well-acquainted with both rhythm and smooth ballroom-dance styles.
In an event inspired by the words of President John F. Kennedy, The Washington Ballet will perform the world premier of WHO WHEN WHY this Saturday, June 24, at the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Kogod Courtyard.
After having spent a lifetime looking at ourselves in the mirror, constantly appraising, who of us wouldn't want to take a dance class in the dark? Two Australian dance students, Alice Glenn and Heidi Barrett, had the same thought in 2009 when they founded No Lights No Lycra, a global dance community that offers dancers and nondancers alike the chance to get their groove on in a dark space, where there's no light, no Lycra, no technique, no teacher and no steps to learn. It's just a place to lose yourself in the music and find your own dance mojo. The event became so popular that it spread past its Melbourne beginnings, first throughout Australia and now, globally.
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.