Teaching Tips
Photo by Matthew Murphy

Jacqulyn Buglisi has a flair for drama. To encourage the students in her intermediate and advanced Graham classes at The Ailey School to open their sternums in a high release, she tells them to stretch “like a flower came out of your heart." When attempting to convey the weight of a hand gesture, she explains that they must “pull the hem of heaven from the sky." During the extensive warm-up sequence, she reminds them that this is no time for complacency: “We don't do positions. We dance the series." Despite her penchant for the Graham dramatics, Buglisi is equally quick to curb any excess of melodrama in her students. “No Swan Lake with the arms," she admonishes one whose wrists are limply crossed.

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This Friday marks the 14-year anniversary of the horrific events of September 11, 2001. For the fifth year in a row, former Martha Graham dancer and choreographer Jacqulyn Buglisi revives her 2011 site-specific performance piece The Table of Silence Project 9/11. Working in collaboration with Italian artist Rossella Vasta, Buglisi summons more than a hundred NYC dancers to gather around the Revson Fountain at Lincoln Center’s Josie Robertson Plaza for the 31-minute movement tribute. Dressed in white, dancers circle the fountain performing simple gestures in unison, concluding with a minute of silence as the dancers raise their arms toward the sky. Audience members are invited to join in this final gesture.

For its fifth annual rendition, three special dancers will participate in the performance:

-       Sixteen-year-old Sydney dances in memory of her father, who was killed in one of the towers.

-       A young dancer honors her father, who survived and was one of the firefighters at the scene.

-       Kitty Lunn is the artistic director of Infinity Dance Theatre––a nontraditional dance company featuring dancers with and without disabilities. Now a paraplegic using a wheelchair, Lunn participates in the tribute every year.

The Table of Silence Project 9/11 will be held Friday, September 11, 8:15–8:46 am. The event is free and open to the public. Additionally, it will be streaming live online. For more info, visit: tableofsilence.org.

Photo by Terri Gold

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