SPECIAL FEATURE

our nutcracker performance is this weekend!

our nutcracker performance is this weekend!

A Westport holiday tradition…

nutcracker 2017 is almost here

nutcracker 2017 is almost here…

our 2017-2018 season is in session

our 2017-2018 season is in session

Another Westport Academy of Dance season is rapidly approaching…

our 35th 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 […]

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

nutcracker_2017_blog

Staged every December for the past 35 years, this professional production includes Academy students that are enrolled in our ballet program. Our Junior and Senior Company members dance the leads with the addition of professional male dancers in their appropriate roles. The Academy’s Nutcracker has become a Westport tradition that fills the holiday season with sweet treats, from tiny angels and brave soldiers to delicate dew drops and radiant sugar plums.

This year’s guest artist is New York City Ballet Principal dancer, Ask la Cour.

Performed at Staples High School on Sat. 12/2 at 3:00 & 7:00pm, Sun. 12/3 at 2:00pm.
Ticket holders for the Saturday, 12/2 3:00pm performance are invited to meet Ask la Cour after the show!

Please call 203.226.9987 or visit westportdance.com for more information.
Tickets for all performances can be purchased here

Enjoy these video clips from last year’s performance!

Dancers, teachers, parent volunteers all getting ready for the coming weekend!

Check out this video from in-studio rehearsal!

What a pleasure it was to be a apart of the kids fun zone at CraftWestport last weekend! The Academy was thrilled to be a sponsor for such a wonderful community event. Thank you to our Jr. & Sr. Company dancers who performed two terrific dances choreographed by Academy teacher Caitlin Roberts. Everyone did such a wonderful job!

Please enjoy this special 360 video of last weekend’s performance.

 

Enjoy this video commentary from Academy students and parents as we all look forward to our upcoming 2017-2018 season!

westport_academy_of_dance_2018_blog_open

 

Enroll in person at the studio, online or via regular mail.

Please feel free to call the studio (203.226.9987) or contact us via email with any questions.

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!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZISGu1xSb6Y&feature=youtu.be

Special thank you to Miss Caitlin for putting this wonderful tribute together.

 

westportdance_alice_blog_2017

Spring is here and so is Westport’s Academy of Dance 4th annual production of Alice.  Original choreography by Courtney Polous, Alice - a fun and funky new take on the children’s classic Alice in Wonderland.  The program highlights jazz, tap and modern styles of dance. All performances will be held at Bedford Middle School Sunday May 14th at 1:00pm and 5:00pm.

Please click here for tickets…

Watch the trailer from last year’s performance here!

westportacademyofdance_summer_blog_2017

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

Download the appropriate forms per age group here… Please email us or call the studio (203.226.9987) with any questions, or for assistance placing your dancer into the appropriate program.

Photography by Kerry Long

Westport’s Academy of Dance is proud to announce that Miss Courtney’s piece ‘To this day’ will be performing in the 2017 Slam Jam. The Academy is supporting the anti-bullying movement in Westport and we are thrilled to be performing at such an important community event.

 

The 2017 SlamJam is a performance art showcase in which high school teens express their feelings about empathy and kindness as well as bullying, exclusion and their social world. Dance, music, rap, poetry, spoken word and song are all represented in this dramatic and powerful evening of exceptional talent. Teens from all over Fairfield County are participating.

Emcee’d by Poetry Slam award-winning artist CEEZ LIIVE, the 2017 SlamJam promises to move and motivate audiences of all ages. Inspired by events in Westport and surrounding areas, as well as by the Westport Arts Center’s “More Than Words” exhibit, SKATEmovement.org (K2BK Founders) presents the 2017 SlamJam – Teens with something to say.

For more information about this event and the link for reg tickets:

http://www.westportplayhouse.org/specialevents/communityevents#2017SlamJam

(If you would like to join us for VIP seating,  you need to call the box office at (203) 227-4177.  Includes pre-performance champagne “meet and greet” and post performance party)

nutcracker_2016registration_blog-v2

Westport’s cherished holiday tradition

Performed at Staples High School
Saturday, 12.3.16 at 3:00pm & 7:00pm
Sunday, 12.4.16 at 2:00pm

You can order your tickets here…

Please contact us for more information: 203.226.9987

Watch the trailer from a previous performance
A very behind the scenes look at our 26th year

more than words

11.15.16

Wishing a very special congratulations to Courtney Poulos and the WAD dancers for their acceptance into the MORE Than Words exhibition.

Be sure to stop by the Westport Arts Center to view all the wonderful works that center around such an important topic facing our kids and adults alike. The exhibit is open until January 7th, 2017.

MORE Than Words/#Iammore

The Westport Arts Center announces the MORE Than Words/#iammore exhibition, featuring selected works by the community at large.   The works were designed in support of the theme of the Arts Center’s previous exhibition MORE Than Words – courage, resilience and empowerment in the face of bullying – featuring pieces by some of the most important contemporary artists of our time.

 If you would like to learn more information about please click here. #iammore

2016_registration_open_blog

Another Westport Academy of Dance season is rapidly approaching!

Enroll in person at the studio, online or via regular mail. Please feel free to call the studio (203.226.9987) or contact us via email with any questions.

westportdance_2011summer_blog

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

Download the appropriate forms per age group here… Please email us or call the studio (203.226.9987) with any questions, or for assistance placing your dancer into the appropriate program.

Thinking about your summer dance plans…Check out what these 3 dancers experienced last year. 

188696

Name: Miranda Saunders           Age: 17

 Where did you dance last summer (2015)?

Joffrey Ballet,  Jazz and Contemporary NYC

Did you have to audition for this program?

yes

Why did you choose this program?

I had never attended a program in NYC and thought it would be a neat experience. It was also a convenient program for me because I was able to pick and choose the weeks I wanted to attend so as to fit my own summer schedule. Also, I had never attended a jazz and contemporary summer program, so I wanted to give it a shot!

 What was your favorite experience?

For the ballet program, I got to stay in an apartment in Greenwich village. My roommates were great…one from Belgium, one from Mexico, and our very own Jane Schutte. The apartment was kind of dumpy, but living in the village was really fun! I lived in the financial district for the jazz and contemporary program…although the housing was much nicer, I preferred the excitement of the village. The teachers at both these programs were pretty awesome, and I had a new teacher for nearly every class. I even got to take a variations class taught by NYCB principal Maria Kowroski! Some of the teachers were tough, but I think I learned a lot from all of them.

I found it refreshing to go to a program with dancers from all different backgrounds and from all over the world; in the ballet program, I had classmates from Japan, Argentina, and Brazil!

One thing I really disliked about this program is that my schedule would leave me with 2-3 hour breaks. I’m not sure why this was because there was plenty of studio space and staff…but it really dragged out the day and I found it very irritating to have to completely warm up again after the breaks.

 What kind of dance genres did you do?

The ballet program: ballet, pointe, pas de deux, variations, modern

Jazz and Contemporary Program: ballet, jazz, contemporary, musical theatre, improvisation, improvisation with voice, Horton, Cunningham, hip hop, street jazz, modern, African…

Did you learn anything new during your experience?

I learned a lot at the jazz and contemporary program because I was introduced to so many different styles; I was definitely forced out of my comfort zone. Many of the students at the program were committed trainees who had more experience in different styles of dance than me, so I think I was able to learn a lot from watching them.

 How long were you away or how long did you participate with this summer program?

2 weeks Joffrey Ballet NYC

2 weeks Joffrey Jazz and Contemporary NYC

 American_Ballet_Theatre_logo

 

 

 

 

Name: Amanda Kenner Age: 16

Where did you dance last summer (2014)?

American Ballet Theatre’s summer intensive  in Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Did you have to audition for this program?

Yes

Why did you choose this program?

I auditioned for ABT’s summer program, and was placed in North Carolina which is a fairly high level, so I decided it was too good an opportunity to pass up.

What was your favorite experience?

My favorite experience was the final performance at the end.

What kind of dance genres did you do?

There was a heavy emphasis on ballet, but we also took modern, jazz, yoga, pilates, and character classes. We also took classes about specific parts of ballet, like mime, variations, port de bras, and even walking/running on stage.

Did you learn anything new during your experience?

I learned about ballet mime and taking notes on choreography and corrections, besides just improving my technique. I also learned how to warm up properly, which doesn’t mean just stretching.

How long were you away or how long did you participate with this summer program?

4 weeks

CPYB_Logo-300

 

 

 

 

Name: Carolyn Cassell Age: 13

Where did you dance last summer (2014)?

CPYB in Carlisle, PA

 Did you have to audition for this program?

 We didn’t have to audition to get it, but to get a level.

 Why did you choose this program?

 Because a lot of my friends were going and the teachers said it was really good.

 What was your favorite experience?

 Having lessons with new teachers because they had a different style of teaching.

What kind of dance genres did you do?

 Mostly ballet and one class of modern a week.

 Did you learn anything new during your experience?

 I learned a lot more about technique. 

 How long were you away or how long did you participate with this summer program?

5 weeks.

DSC_1312

 

 

nutcracker dad

12.04.15

image1-2

Photo: Rachel and Michael Wolfe

 

Ever wonder what it is like to be the Dad in The Nutcracker? Well here is a hilarious story that will give you the idea.

Click Here to check out his blog.

Et Tu, Ballet? A Father’s Attempt To “Participate”

NOVEMBER 19, 2015  by Michael Wolfe

Nutcracker funny

The email came forwarded with a short note from my wife, direct in its simplicity:

“You’re doing this.”

The email was a plea from Westport’s Academy of Dance, my daughter’s ballet school.  Their upcoming performance of “The Nutcracker”, the annual holiday blockbuster that had entertained and tortured parents for the last century or so, had had an unfortunate setback:  the gentleman who had volunteered for years to play the role of Clara’s father had a conflict and would be unable to perform.  Would anyone be willing to take his place?

I stared at the email for a few minutes, thinking about the implications, and a classic quandary emerged:  does the chance to engage with my daughter’s passion outweigh the outright possibility (or probability) of making a fool of myself?

On the one hand, I am not shy about public performance.  The stage doesn’t bother me, and I have absolutely no pride once the lights are shining down on me.  Anyone who’s been unlucky enough to have seen me scream David Lee Roth songs on karaoke night can attest to this unfortunate side of my personality.  I have a philosophy about performing, most likely born of necessity:  enthusiasm helps cover for an utter lack of measurable talent.  Scream into the microphone and act like you’re a rock star, and you are one (provided said rock star is surrounded only by inebriated friends as witnesses before the alcohol-fueled memory loss sets in).

But this was something altogether different.  I’d seen the Nutcracker dozens of times since my daughter’s first appearance 8 years before.  And I’d seen what the part of the father entails.  He’s only on-stage for a short time, and the demands are mostly cosmetic, but about halfway through his scene, as the music shifts to a slow waltz, it happens:  the dad dances.

Let me be clear: I am not a graceful human being.  I am lucky that I stay upright for long periods of time, considering that my lanky limbs often flail about in random directions.  I bump my knees into walls, chairs and various kitchen appliances at least three times a day.  I have perma-bruises over half of my body from smashing into our open dishwasher.  Our dog knows to clear a path for me when entering a room.  In general, things are better for everyone when I’m not moving.

But what could I do?  My daughter’s entire non-school life is centered around ballet.  She dances 6 or 7 days a week, allowing herself time off only to eat, study, and threaten to kill her brother while he’s sleeping. And it’s not an activity like a team sport that allows a ton of parental participation.  In team sports, parents can coach.  They can cheer their kids on from the sidelines.  They can spend quality time driving up and down the eastern seaboard on their way to a never-ending series of travel soccer games (…on second thought, forget team sports, that sounds awful).  With ballet, a dad tends to have two opportunities for involvement:  he can drop his daughter off at rehearsals, and he can come to her actual performance, which takes place in the dark and practically demands a good nap.  That’s pretty much it.  I can’t teach my daughter how to plie (I can barely spell it).

So this was a golden opportunity of sorts.  I could intimately involve myself in my daughter’s primary activity.  And I could do it before the inevitable teen-angst years to come, when her willingness to tolerate her dad’s presence is likely to drop by at least 50%.

And, in a way, it wouldn’t be my first exposure to the inner workings of a dance performance.  My mother actually ran a modern dance school (and later the foundation that supported it) for decades.  She was not an instructor, but as a child was such an eager and entranced student that she began working there as a young adult, eventually rising to became the studio’s Director.  You can imagine the boyhood joy I felt in being dragged to hundreds of dance performances on glorious weekends when my friends were playing baseball.  I always assumed it one of my mother’s great disappointments when I failed to show any interest in breaking the gender barrier at her school, so perhaps this was a chance to make amends.

So I sent an email to the ballet school director, and I was in.  I managed to pass some kind of audition without tripping over the instructor’s torso, and was awarded the role of Clara’s father, party host and elegant man of the hour. Even better, my daughter seemed excited about my involvement, and looked forward to my chance to peek behind the curtain of her favorite activity.

And I shared her enthusiasm…until my first rehearsal.

I was, to put it mildly, a prancing wreck.

To be fair, my predecessor had been occupying the role for nearly a decade.  He had been drafted while his daughter was a ballet student, likely with similar motivations to share a meaningful experience with his young girl.  But as I fumbled through the rehearsals, it was clear that I was in a different league.  He was tall, elegant and coordinated, and understood all of his marks and moves.  I looked like a drunk muppet in the midst of a seizure.

And to make matters worse, no one seemed to care.  The teachers were rightly focused on the girls and their performances, and had clearly grown accustomed to not worrying about what the hapless and possibly spastic adult in the scene needed to do.  But I was lost, an old guy in sweatpants trying to remember whether to turn right or left, bend down or arch up, or hold hands with the tall girl in heels or the short girl with the hair braids.   Actually, no one wanted to hold my hand.  I was sweating like a marathon runner in August, and my hands were dripping buckets.  Most everyone kept their distance, a smart play for sanitary reasons.

The weekend of the performance fast approached, and all of a sudden it was the Friday night dress rehearsal before the series of official shows, three in all over the two-day weekend.  I arrived at the theater nervous, and immediately made two discoveries that only served to boost my confidence further:  one, the video I had been studying for direction and pointers was from the wrong year and of absolutely no benefit, and two, my costume was at least one size too big and could not be properly altered in time for curtain call.  So I had the dual pleasure of not only failing to know my part but also of having a strong likelihood of a Janet Jackson-style wardrobe malfunction that would expose my private parts to a large group of parents and children.

I stumbled through the dress rehearsal, vaguely aware of where I was supposed to be at any given time and managing to find that perfect midpoint point between being an actual asset and screwing up the entire production.  Keep in mind that the part of the father is hardly a main role.  Stand here at this point, open this box at that point, fake some dialogue at this moment, etc.  I’m basically being asked to play a glorified extra, not reenact Baryshnikov’s Greatest Hits.  But there was that one dance scene, where I was required to perform specific body movements to keep in time with the other dancers.  And let’s just say that I wasn’t quite in sync with the ensemble yet.  I looked like Joe Cocker dancing with a team of Beyonces.  Thank god for the patience and attention of the young woman playing my wife in the scene.  She noticed the terror in my eyes, pulled me aside for extra help (like a math teacher in high school, only our ages reversed), and practiced our moves until I had a reasonable amount of confidence that I wouldn’t throw up. But was I properly prepared?  Absolutely not.

The next day came, and I arrived early to the theater to get my head together.  I was immediately escorted to the men’s dressing room, where I met an assortment of professional ballet dancers who were playing the larger male roles to accompany the serious student dancers.  Changing into my oversized costume in front of these impossibly muscular physical specimens of human perfection did absolutely nothing to improve my confidence.  These guys looked like they lived at an Equinox, and hadn’t consumed a trans fat in years.  I looked like I lived at Wendy’s.  This boost was furthered by their choice of legwear.  Professional male dancers wear male leotards, which serve no actual purpose other than making one’s genitals appear to be the size of basketballs, and on the verge of bursting through their thin fabric at any minute.  Having reduced my masculine self-esteem by at least half, I quickly escaped the dressing room and sat down backstage to await further instructions while wondering how I found myself in this mess.  I sulked a bit more when the mother in charge of cast makeup turned to me and exclaimed “can I do something about that forehead?” and started pounding makeup on my face like she was beating a dusty pillow.

And then, salvation arrived.

My daughter emerged from the kid’s dressing area, she and her fellow cast mates moving somewhere backstage to continue their preparations.  I had never seen her before a performance, and she looked ethereal in her wispy snowflake dress, her face in angelic makeup and hair tied tightly in an elegant bun.  She saw me dressed in my overflowing costume, and beamed a smile as wide as I’ve ever seen from her.  “Daddy, you look awesome!” she said, her friends giggling at the site of me transformed into a 19th century aristocrat.  “Let me help!”  She quickly sat down next to me, grabbed the box of makeup that had been cast aside and started dabbing bits of blush and who knows what else on my face.  I smiled and let her have her way, her compliant subject in this backstage rite-of-passage (again, our roles completely reversed and yet utterly satisfying).  As she laughed and performed her makeup magic, my nerves subsided.  “Are you ready?” she asked me, an exaggerated look of worry on her face that couldn’t mask her excitement at having me here with her.  “All set”, I replied, with a wink.  She laughed, and as she walked away to join her castmates, she turned back towards me and shouted “Good luck!”.  I just about melted, and realized how lucky I was to be present in this perfect moment (albeit in a puffy shirt and ballet shoes).

And, as fate would have it, the shows went off without a hitch.  My mind rebooted to its proper settings, I clicked into gear and somehow retained the directions I was given.  I hit my marks.  I bowed at the right times.  And, come the moment of truth, I danced as properly as could be expected from a man of my age and suspect abilities.  I even heard cheers from the crowd during our curtain calls. These may have been leftovers meant for the line of dancers before me, but I took them for my own and am not giving them back.  Thinking back to the decades of dance performances I had sat through as a boy, I remembered the beaming smiles of the girls onstage, knowing that their loved ones were watching and feeling proud of what they had accomplished.  I couldn’t help but smile myself.  Mom may have known what she was doing after all.

Alas, my mother was not there to see the moment.  10 months earlier, she had been diagnosed with late-stage lung cancer.  Six difficult and trying months after that, she was gone.  She died far, far too young, robbed of the chance of seeing her grandchildren grow and see herself reflected in their bodies and faces (or, in the case of my daughter, her jetes and arabesques).  I’m not a believer in afterlives and spirits, but for a brief moment I imagined my mother’s satisfaction, looking down at the sight of her son and granddaughter on stage together, knowing that her life’s passion was being passed on.  My smile widened a bit more at the thought of it.

The next year, and in the three years that followed, additional emails arrived from the school, only these times directed solely to me with the subject line: “Reprising Your Role”.  Needless to say, I’ll be appearing again in this year’s performance, my fourth in a row. No rush to come see me this December, as I expect I’ll be playing this part for a few more years until my daughter graduates.  The school tends to lean towards the comfort of the known entity in their volunteers, however hapless they may be.  I’m already stumbling through rehearsals and fearing for the maintenance of my public dignity.  But I can hack it, for my daughter, my mom, and truthfully, maybe a little for me too.  And my daughter’s got this amazing new blush she can’t wait to try out on me.  Who am I to say no?

Michael Wolfe

nutcracker_2015registration_open_blog_v2

Westport’s cherished holiday tradition

Performed at Staples High School

Saturday, 12.5.15 at 3:00pm & 7:00pm
Sunday, 12.6.15 at 2:00pm

You can order your tickets here…

Please contact us for more information: 203.226.9987

Watch the trailer from a previous performance
A very behind the scenes look at our 26th year

http://westportdance.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/academyofdance_2015registration_open_blog.jpg

Another Westport Academy of Dance season is rapidly approaching!

Below please find all relevant information pertaining to registration and how to enroll in person at the studio, online or via regular mail:

Returning Families:
June 8th: Register in person at the studio 9:00am – 8:00pm
June 8th: Register online anytime after 9:00am or via regular mail
June 9th – 10th: Register in person at the studio 6:00 – 8:00pm
Beginning June 11th: Please call for an appointment or
register online, via fax or regular mail

New Families:
June 15th: Register in person at the studio 9:00am
1:00pm and 5:00 8:00pm
June 15th: Register online anytime after 9:00am or via regular mail
Beginning June 16th: Please call for an appointment or register online, via fax or regular mail

Classes begin the week of September 8th
Download 20152016 class schedule by clicking here
Download 20152016 enrollment form by clicking here

View performance and behind the scenes photos and videos by clicking here

Please feel free to call the studio (203.226.9987) or contact us via email with any questions.

 

alice 2015

04.28.15

Spring is here and so is Westport’s Academy of Dance 2nd annual production of Alice.  Original choreography by Courtney Polous, Alice - a fun and funky new take on the children’s classic Alice in Wonderland.  The program highlights jazz, tap and modern styles of dance. All performances will be held at Bedford Middle School this Sunday May 3rd at 1:00pm and 5:00pm.  Follow the behind the scenes on our Instagram and Facebook page. Click here to see a special video:

http://animoto.com/play/FsUFnihXMKI5bEPifqOWTg

Alice Collage

westportdance_2011summer_blog

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

Download the appropriate forms per age group here… Please email us or call the studio (203.226.9987) with any questions, or for assistance placing your dancer into the appropriate program.

body of work

03.17.15

Check out this dance video that was created for Broadway Dance Center’s Aim Invitational! Choreographed by Academy Teacher Caitlin Roberts and performed by Academy Students.

 

2014_nutcracker_blog_banner

Join us for a journey into The Land Of Sweets and on a grand adventure.

Westport’s Academy of Dance will perform the Nutcracker this weekend at

Staples High School in Westport, Connecticut. 

Tickets can be purchased at the door. 

westportdance_alice_blog_icon

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/

IMG_2017

 

Please come join Clara, the Sugar Plum Fairy, and several other dancers from our production at the Westport women’s club Nutcracker Tea on Saturday, Nov 29th from 2-4pm.   Mary Ellen Marpe, wife of first selectman of Westport, Jim Marpe, will be doing a live reading of the Nutcracker, followed by appearances by many of the cast members!   Dancers will take pictures, sign autographs, and delight your little one in their dazzling costumes.   Sweet treats, cakes, tea sandwiches, hot chocolate, and tea will be served, and attendance of the event will include automatic entry to win several holiday raffle gifts.  Tickets to this event are $40. All proceeds will go to support the performing arts program at the Waltersville school in Bridgeport, CT.  Please visit http://www.westportwomansclub.org/ for information and to buy tickets.

Nut770

Also this year, Westport’s Academy of Dance will be partnering with the longstanding children’s charity Al’s Angels, by holding a holiday Toy Drive at each performance of the show.    Please join us in supporting this wonderful by cause by bringing a new, unwrapped gift with you when attending the performance.   All toys will be wrapped by volunteers at Al’s Angels and distributed to children in need, battling cancer, rare blood diseases, and those in severe financial hardship.   During this magical time of year, please help us to provide children who are less fortunate with a token of love and the holiday spirit!  And please visit http://www.alsangels.org/ to find out more about Al’s Angels and what you can do to help their wonderful efforts.
Nut336
 

 

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 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!

IMG_1858

 

IMG_1859

SDC

Westport Academy of Dance teacher David Fernandez is at it again! Some Dance Company’s tickets for Encore! are up and on sale at Ticketmaster. Feel free to purchase your tickets, and pass the link on and spread the word! This special performance takes place on Monday, April 28th, 2014 at 7pm and is featuring some of the Academy students!

To get your tickets, Click Here! 

Also, please check out the Kickstarter campaign. Ticket sales can go to benefit Career Transition for Dancers, a great organization that has helped numerous dancers in transition from their performance careers.  Our Kickstarter link is below, and feel free to also pass it on to other dance/arts enthusiasts.

Help support Some Dance Company on Kickstater! Click Here to make a contribution!

Finally, we leave you with a fun video put together by David featuring our lovely Academy Students!