Florida Dance Festival On Tour Visits Gainesville

On Friday, Nov. 11 and Saturday, Nov. 12 there will be a two-day dance festival for middle and high school students hosted by Santa Fe College and the University of Florida School of Theatre and Dance. The 2011 Florida Dance Festival on Tour, now in its seventh year in Gainesville, brings guest dance teachers from all around the state and nation to teach a variety of classes including Ballet, Modern, Jazz Dance, African, Hip-Hop, Salsa and Capoiera as well as Musical Theatre and Classical Indian Dance.

Members of the Florida Dance Association bring quality instruction to hundreds of students from well-know dance programs across the state. These young dancers will enjoy a weekend of challenging classes culminating in two special dance concerts.

Welcome Concert, Thursday

The first public event is Dance Theatre of Santa Fe’s Welcome Concert of works by SF faculty members Rodney A. Brown, Tari Kendall, Melissa Canto and Jessica Mayhew. The first concert wil be given at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 10 in the SF Fine Arts Hall. Tickets can be obtained online at www.sfcollege.edu/finearts or by calling 352-395-4181. Cost: $15 orchestra; $12 balcony; $9 seniors, UF students with ID, and children 12 and under. Free to SF students and employees with ID.

Included in the evening will be the reconstruction of the historic Doris Humphrey and Ruth St. Denis modern dance piece entitled “Soaring.” With music by Robert Schumann, this piece is described as “The lyric idea of wind, wave, and water, and includes a set piece of a large silk cloth that the dancers lift and create choreographed shapes with.”

Acknowledged as one of the greatest choreographers of the American modern dance movement of the 20th century, Doris Humphrey (1895-1958) is championed not only as a modern dance pioneer but also as a prolific choreographer, teacher, mentor, and author. Her influence on dance continues to resonate in the works of those choreographers whom she touched and in those who have come after her. Her book “The Art of Making Dances” is still used around the world as a guide for fledgling choreographers.

Also in the evening a new work will be performed by dancers from the UF School of Dance with choreography by Yaniv Abraham, music by Yuzo Kako Shigeto and costumes by Srica Bascom.
 And also featured will be one collaborative work by SF with the UF School of Theatre and Dance choreographed by Michael Foley, University of South Florida dance faculty member and FDA board member. This will be the first dance piece where three Florida college dance programs have collaborated to produce a combined talent dance.

FDF On Tour Showcase, Saturday

The next public event is the FDF On Tour Showcase, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12 with two guest choreographers. Jennifer Archibald brings a new work danced by students from University of South Florida School of Theater and Dance. Michael Foley brings a reprise of the collaborative work danced by SF and UF School of Theatre and Dance students. There will also be selected works by the Florida Dance Festival On Tour participants from dance studios and schools all over the state.

This concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 12 in the SF Fine Arts Hall. Tickets can be obtained online at www.sfcollege.edu/finearts or by calling 352-395-4181. Cost: $15 orchestra; $12 balcony; $9 seniors, UF students with ID, and children 12 and under. Free to SF students and employees with ID.

The three partners in this event are Santa Fe College, the University of Florida School of Theatre and Dance, and the Florida Dance Association. They continue to shape and hone this annual festival by actively working to enrich the program for students, audiences and artists alike.

The Florida Dance Association, under the direction of Bill Doolin of Miami, is a resource organization that helps Florida dance artists to network, collaborate and support one another to further the cause of dance arts in Florida. One of a few remaining organizations of its kind in the country, FDA has given scholarships, presented dance groups, provided workshops, employed dancers, teachers and choreographers and helped to spread awareness of up-and-coming dance artists from all over the country for 35 years.

FDA programs help to increase communication within the state’s dance community and foster a sense of unity and pride among Florida’s dance artists. FDA serves a constituency of dance professionals and students, dance businesses and organizations, and dance audiences and enthusiasts.

Come enjoy this collaborative performance celebration of young Florida artists. For more information about the festival or FDA programs, visit www.floridadanceassociation.org or call 305-310-8080. The SF Fine Arts Hall is located on the Northwest Campus, 3000 NW 83rd Street, Gainesville.

This event is sponsored by the Santa Fe College Fine Arts Department, SF Student Life, Florida Dance Association, the University Florida School of Theater and Dance, Spring Hill Suites, and Best Western Gateway Grand. FDF is also funded in part by the Alachua County Tourist Development Council. With support from the National Endowment for the Arts, Florida Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs, and Publix Supermarket Charities.