The Dance program opens its student production Fall Dance Festival on November 6th- November 9th in the Creative Movement Studio, featuring 8 student choreographers' work; the festival this year creatively explores solutions to a range of themes, and the 38 student performers have been giving as much of themselves as possible over these last 2 months. I believe you will find their work vulnerable and fearless. I am proud of the work they dedicated to this process, and both choreographers and performers are excited to share their finished work with an audience!
From Artistic Director and Coordinator of Fall Dance Festival, Kyla Olson:
Fall Dance Festival is an interesting production because it is fully produced by our students. The student choreographers spend 8 weeks creating original choreography with student performers who learn how to work with costume, lighting, and sound designers, while training to serve as crew for their own production. They experience completely producing a show from all perspectives, creative and technical. This give them agency over their own work and anl understanding of what it takes to produce a dance production.
From choreographer Bailey Thames:
This amazing experience has pushed me as a choreographer to be more inventive with my stylistic choices and movement vocabulary. I have been looking forward to choreographing for fall dance festival since I was a freshman. It's a great opportunity to showcase creativity and the tools we've been building on since our first year.
From choreographer Genevie Suarez:
My experience with Fall Dance Festival is exciting because I am able to work with dancers from different backgrounds who are all committed to trying a new style for my piece. Being able to create work for Fall Dance Festival is an honor because I have the opportunity to embrace a topic - people who are affected by school shootings -and to bring awareness to it through dance.
I am excited to announce that Li-Chou Cheng will be joining us as a guest instructor in the Spring.
While I have known Li-Chou Cheng for a handful of years, I have known of him for a couple of decades. The list of national as well as international dancers and choreographers I know who have been shaped and inspired by his extraordinary teaching is extensive. Because he is truly a master teacher with a diverse background and vast knowledge of the field, he is the ideal guest artist to teach our students.
Mr. Cheng was born in Shanghai, China. He started his professional training at the age thirteen at the Beijing Dance Academy. In 1961, he joined the Beijing Central Ballet and in 1975 he served as a company ballet master and rehearsal director. After immigrating to the United States in 1980, he held the position as assistant professor at the University of Utah and Arizona State University. In 1988, he was invited by Bruce Marks to join Boston Ballet as a Principal Teacher for both the company and the school. Mr. Cheng served as Ballet Master in residence at Texas Christian University since 1990. In 2006, he was promoted to Professor of Professional Practice in Ballet, and he retired in 2018 after 28 years at TCU.
Mr. Cheng is in demand nationwide as a master teacher. He has worked with many ballet companies and their summer dance programs such as at Pittsburgh Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Texas Ballet Theater, Ballet West, Ballet Met, Ballet Austin, Indianapolis Ballet, Eugene Ballet, Ballet Oregon, Lexington Ballet and Walnut Hill School of Arts. His international teaching experience includes the National Ballet School of Canada, Mexico Institute of Arts, Taipei National University of Arts, Taiwan Cloud Gate Dance Company, Taipei Dance Forum and Pen-Wa School of Ballet in Macau.
Our students will forever be changed by the experience of working with Li-Chou! On top of being an extraordinary artist and teacher, Li-Chou Cheng is also a lovely human being and will, I am certain, inspire our faculty as well.