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miss tollie 20 year anniversary

This recital weekend we enjoyed several amazing performances and celebrated Miss Tollie’s 20th year teaching at the Academy. To honor her, we have created a video that highlights her incredible career. Thank you Miss Tollie for all that you do for the Academy! Special thank you to Miss Caitlin for putting this wonderful tribute together. […]

2017 summer camps!

2017 summer camps!

Join us at the Academy for various summer dance camp programs. Short-term sessions and private instruction also available for all ages and levels

our 35th anniversary performance of the nutcracker (full-length video)

Watch our 35th anniversary performance of The Nutcracker here…

alice 2016 video trailer

alice 2016 video trailer

watch the video montage here

performance hair and make-up prep video

For tips and info on preparing hair and make-up for a performance, click to watch the video above Download demo video for iPhone by clicking here

we’re winners and other stories

As many of you know, last month Jr. and Sr. Company members participated in National Dance Week Foundation’s Kick It Challenge. After submitting our video, we were recognized as one of the winners of the 2nd Annual Video Contest in the category of dance studios! We are so excited to be recognized for our efforts and can’t […]

the nutcracker movie

the nutcracker movie

Watch the trailer here

winter showcase video

winter showcase video

Watch the video montage, download video for your iPhone…

one dancer’s love of the nutcracker

Staples High School Sophomore and Academy student Jill Rappaport’s experiences as a dancer in the Academy’s… read more

rave reviews for the academy’s david fernandez and his choreography for joaquin de luz

David Fernandez’s “Five Variations on a Theme” performed by Joaquin De Luz, New York City Ballet…read more

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Reflecting on 40 years, we didn’t know what to expect when students were asked their thoughts about dance and their experiences at The Academy. What we found brought smiles, tears and such a deep sense of gratitude. This video is dedicated to all the students, parents, teachers, and members of our dance community – those that create these moments, making each and every day memorable.

(Full-screen view is recommended – please click the arrows in the lower right corner of the video player, next to “HD”)

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A very special thanks to all that participated in the video shoot. Please stay tuned for more video releases!

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Mark your calendar for December 15th, because Alice Auditions are right around the corner!

This Spring Production is open to Academy dancers of all disciplines, various levels, and ages 1st grade and above.

Rehearsals will be exclusively on weekends, and dancers will perform the show at Bedford Middle School on May 3, 2015.

Auditions will be held on December 15th, 4-9pm (exact times by grade TBA). Everyone who auditions will receive a part in the show!

Click here to see excerpts of last year’s performance: http://westportdance.com/blog/special-feature/alice-2014-montage/

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For tips and info on preparing hair and make-up for a performance, click to watch the video above

Download demo video for iPhone by clicking here

Scenes from our 2014 Winter Showcase – Photography by Kerry Long.

We have two great performances this weekend! Be sure to get your tickets and tell your friends!

Click here to see the promotional Alice video and meet all of the amazing characters.

And…

This year our featured student choreographer has given us some insight into her process. Take a look.

Name: Jess Riniti

 Age: 18

 Is this your first time choreographing a piece for the stage?

This is my first time choreographing a piece for the stage and it is a great honor to be able to do so. It is such a wonderful gift that I get to close out my years at the Academy taking on the role that I have seen my teachers appear to do with ease for so long. It turns out, they’re superheroes, because it was far from easy.

What was your inspiration for this piece?

I fell in love with the song first, and then the story eventually came to me. The song in its most “in your face” form is about letting go of a significant other, but I didn’t think that was something that the dancers might necessarily be able to relate to. However I think that something that is closer to the hearts of people our age is the transition from childhood to adulthood and learning about adult things. Everyone loves childhood but longs to not be innocent anymore, everyone wants to grow up until they’re grown up and then they’d do anything to go back. There’s a fear of losing your innocence but also wanting to give it up to learn about what your parents and big brothers and sisters have bragged about for so long. So since we’re all kind of going through giving up and losing the innocence and ignorance of childhood, I thought that would be a good subject.

Have you been influenced by any choreographers in your life or during this process?

I’m an avid fan of So You Think You Can Dance so choreographers like Travis Wall and Mia Michaels are definitely big inspirations to me. The way their dances evoke such emotions from their audience members is so inspiring and it makes me want to make something that makes my audience feel the same way. I get lost in their story and the way the dancers move. Not everyone can make that happen.

What have your learned from your experience?

I’ve learned that patience is one of the most wonderful qualities in dancers. Amy and Jane have been so amazing and patient with my as I learn how to figure out each step along the way. I’ve learned what it feels like to push your boundaries, which is amazing and scary at the same time. Going into this uncharted territory helped me to feel better about going away to college next year. I came out on the other side of this long and scary journey a better person so now whatever life throws at me; I will dive in headfirst.

Winter/Spring Workshop will be performed at Bedford Middle School:

Saturday May 17th: 11:00am-12:00pm

Sunday May 18th:  3:30-4:30pm.

Alice will also be performed at Bedford Middle School:

Saturday May 17th: 3:00-4:15pm

Sunday May 18th: 2:00-3:15pm

 

 

April 25th-May4th is National Dance Week! To celebrate and acknowledge our love for dance, we want to join in the fun!

A special poster will be hanging on the wall by studio 1 where you can write, “Why you love to dance” and share with everyone. Maybe the music moves you or you love to dance gracefully like a ballerina. Whatever the reason, we want to encourage everyone to share their love for dance!

The studio is BUZZING this month with Alice and Workshop performances only two weeks away! Shortly after that we have our Spring Recitals and then summer is here! Talk about a great month of dance! Be sure to get your tickets to both of these wonderful events today!

In other news, some of our little dancers performed in NYC this past Monday for Academy teacher David Fernandez. The performance titled “Encore!” was a great success and a wonderful experience for all! Congratulations to all of the dancers involved!

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We’ve combined these two great experiences into one show! Sign up and participate in one or both of these awesome performance opportunites. It’s not too late! : )

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Alice – a fun and funky new take on the children’s classic, Alice in Wonderland. With original choreography from our own Courtney Poulos, this vibrant and unique performance is taking the full length production to Bedford Middle School. The show highlights jazz, tap and modern styles of dance, and features music crossing many genres. Auditions this weekend (February 1st) and Performances the weekend of May 17th!

Click here for a glimpse at pasts performances and a preview of what’s to come!

For more information and to sign up, go to:  http://westportdance.com/datadir/pdf/Alice_2014_Production_Information.pdf

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Winter/Spring Workshop offers an experience for dancers to work with teachers and explore alternative movement styles. A unique performance opportunity for Jr. II, Jr. Co. and Sr. Co. dancers to showcase faculty and student choreographed pieces at Bedford Middle School the weekend of May 17th* No auditions necessary, just sign up and be apart of a creative process.

Click here for a video montage from workshop last year!

For more information and to sign up, go to:  http://westportdance.com/datadir/pdf/Winter_Spring_Showcase_sign_up_2014.pdf

 

A collection of clips from this year’s winter workshop and showcase performance at FTC StageOne – set to the music of Arcade Fire.  Full performance video in the making… Please contact us if you would like to order the complete show on DVD.

april 28th from 1-4pm a mini modeling workshop is being held at debra sommerville’s chic westport studio!  must be 12 years+ years old to participate and space is limited.  cost is $75.  for more information or to sign up click here

just a sneak peak of what’s to come…great job dancers!

congratulations to grace bergonzi!  after 15 years of watching her smile and dance we will get to see her original choreography in this year’s winter showcase.

tickets are now on sale for workshop families and will be offered to academy families beginning march 10th
$15 per ticket-seating is not assigned
saturday, march 30th at 11:30am & 1:30pm

fairfield theater company on stage one
70 Sanford Street, Fairfield
(at the metro north fairfield train station)

check out jim cooney by clicking here

What an exciting show! Watch our Academy dancers at Toquet Hall after only a few short weeks of preparation and rehearsal for this new performance workshop with original choreography from our own Courtney Poulos.

Westport’s Academy of Dance is excited to announce this evening’s performance of Alice – a fun and funky new take on the children’s classic, Alice in Wonderland. Read the rest of this entry »

we had a great rehearsal on stage yesterday…enjoy the pictures and if you haven’t already ordered your tickets you can do so from our website.


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please join us for another wonderful winter showcase this year on st. patrick’s day.  while there won’t be any irish dancing in this year’s performance we do have a bollywood style number choreographed by monica kapoor and performed by the entire cast of this year’s showcase.

monica is presently performing in the broadway production of mama mia and we are thrilled to have such an exciting choreographer working with our students. 

susie gorman, master teacher and choreographer is also working with two groups of dancers.

the academy’s own courtney poulos, caitlyn roberts and nancy zindell are rehearsing their students to showcase all of their talents.

congratulations to margot steinberg, senior company dancer, who was chosen as this year’s student choreographer.  we are all excited to see her piece!

tickets are now on sale. our showcase will be performed at the fairfield theater company on stage one…70 sanford street, fairfield (at the metro north railroad station). performances will be at 11:30am and 1:30pm on saturday, march 17th…seating is limited so please purchase your tickets early. click here to download the order form.

read more about the performance

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we are embarking on a new journey this summer — a workshop and summer camp featuring a fun and funky new take on the children’s classic, alice in wonderland.  with original choreography from our own Courtney Poulos, the production will highlight jazz, tap and modern styles of dance, and will be open to dancers of all disciplines, various levels and ages (5-18).  the workshop and the summer camp will commence with a performance!

click here for more information and enrollment forms

please pick up your pre-ordered copy of our winter showcase 2011 dvd.  we have some extra copies available if you forgot to pre-order.  stop by the studio on the following days:

Tonight–Wed 7/6 between 5:30-7:00pm
Mon 7/11 between 5:15-7:00pm
Tue 7/12 between 5:00-7:00pm
Wed 7/13 between 5:15-7:00pm

Our Winter Showcase workshop was added to the line up of ongoing academy performances to give our talented teachers, choreographers and students the chance to further illustrate their creativity. Read the rest of this entry »

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bravo to our wonderful teachers and choreographers catalina bohiltea, elizabeth coker giron, natalie lambelet-palacious, courtney poulos, caitlin roberts, and our student choreographer amy lalime.  ftc’s stage one theater was filled with amazing music and performances this past saturday afternoon.  our dancer’s hard work paid off and our audiences were on their feet!

a very special thanks to fred busk for his invaluable help setting up and taking down our dance floor … your generosity and spirit are greatly appreciated by all, especially our dancers who wouldn’t be able to perform without your help!  let’s not forget our film crew, visual mercernary group, whose talent and editing skills will be seen once again with a dvd recording of our amazing day.  thank you to gayle kirsch for running back stage again for us, it wouldn’t be such an efficient show without you.  we can’t wait for next year…our 3rd annual winter showcase!

pictures from dress rehearsal were posted to our facebook page last week … below are pictures of brightly colored pointe shoes from courtney’s piece “speak for yourself.” these pictures were taken after the first show as the colored shoes weren’t available for photographing at the rehearsal.  enjoy.

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tickets are currently on sale.  our showcase will be performed at the fairfield theater company on stage one…70 sanford street, fairfield (at the metro north railroad station).  performances will be at 12pm and 2pm on saturday, march 26th…seating is limited so please purchase your tickets early.  click here to download the order form.

read more about the performance
watch video from last year’s show

hard at work, but having fun in amy’s workshop rehearsal on a beautiful winter’s day!

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the academy is excited to announce elizabeth coker girõn, associate artistic director of the sean curran company as our workshop guest choroegrapher this year. she will begin rehearsing this sunday, january 23rd and her piece will include all of this year’s workshop dancers. she has been a member of the seán curran company since 2006, and its associate artistic director since 2009.

“curran approaches dance making with the sharp intelligence of a conceptualist and the raw physicality of an athlete.”
~The Boston Globe

Click here to view video clips.

coming to your blog soon…video clips from her rehearsals!

Westport’s Academy of Dance is thrilled to announce our second annual Winter Showcase ‘11, to be performed at FTC on StageOne on March 26, 2011. Our company and pre-company dancers will once again be given the opportunity to collaborate with choreographers and create unique, multi-disciplinary performance pieces within this exciting new forum.

Works will be rehearsed over a two month period, and will cover a wide range of styles and techniques. The performance world is a vast, dynamic place, and we are pleased to offer the opportunity for dancers to continually explore what dance has to offer.

Not only will this be a chance for students to perform without the boundaries of any specific category, they will also find themselves contributing to the creative process.

The final performances will also feature one student-choreographed work. In preparation for Winter Showcase ‘11, students were asked to present ideas to a panel of teachers. One has already been selected to choreograph a piece to be performed by that student’s peers. Sr. company member, Amy Lalime will rehearse over a two month period, and with the guidance of her teachers, see her inspiration come to fruition via dancers she has studied alongside for years.

The Academy teachers and students are excited to embark on this journey together, and we thank all of the talented individuals that will make it happen. We hope those in our community will also join us for the performances.

Please check back for ongoing updates.

Winter Showcase ‘11
FTC on StageOne
March 26, 2011
Showtimes tba

Our first annual Winter Showcase at FTC StageOne was an exciting and unique performance. Click above to watch a quick video montage.

Enjoy!

dress rehearsal and performances were the highlight of this past weekend!  bravo to our wonderful teachers and choreographers, tollie barrato, catalina bohiltea, david fernandez, natalie lambelet palacious, courtney poulos, caitlin roberts, and our student choreographer julia edelman.  ftc’s stage one theater was filled with amazing music and performances on a beautiful sunday afternoon.  our dancer’s hard work paid off and our audiences were on their feet!

a very special thanks to fred busk and his son, for their invaluable help setting up and taking down our dance floor … your generosity and spirit are greatly appreciated by all, especially our dancers who wouldn’t be able to perform without your help!  let’s not forget our film crew, visual mercernary group, who’s talent and editing skills will be seen once again with a dvd recording of our amazing day.  thank you to gayle kirsch for running back stage again for us, it wouldn’t be such an efficient show without you.  we can’t wait for next year…our 2nd annual winter showcase!  enjoy the pictures below.

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Congratulations to Julia Edelman, student choreographer for our first annual Winter Showcase. Click above to view an excerpt from an interview with Julia.

tickets are on sale for our winter showcase ’10 being performed at the fairfield theater company on stage one…70 sanford street, fairfield (at the metro north railroad station). performances will be at 1pm and 5pm on sunday march 7th…seating is limited so please purchase your tickets early. click here to download the order form.

we are excited about our first showcase where company and pre-company dancers cover a wide range of styles and techniques in these performances, giving them the opportunity to continually explore what dance has to offer. in addition to the professionally choreographed pieces, academy student julia edelman, will be debuting her first choreographed piece “underneath it all”.

show your support of the academy and their performers by attending the show!

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tickets go on sale to academy families and the general public beginning february 23rd.  our showcase will be performed at the fairfield theater company on stage one…70 sanford street, fairfield (at the metro north railroad station).  performances will be at 1pm and 5pm on sunday march 7th…seating is limited so please purchase your tickets early.  click here to download the order form.

dancers working hard with david fernandez on a saturday morning.

a saturday morning rehearsal with david

a saturday morning rehearsal with david

julia edelman, our student choreographer for winter showcase ’10 was interviewed by nancy and filmed by craig hyland, visualmerc.  some great moments from a fun saturday afternoon.

checking the lightingLight looks goodlast adjustment for nowdecisions, decisionsfor placementhow do we looklast minute instructionsjulia, ready to begin