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Krista Wilhelmsen
African American Arts Institute

Last modified: Monday, February 20, 2012

IU African American Dance Company's annual workshop features classes, discussions

Feb. 20, 2012

BLOOMINGTON -- Indiana University's African American Dance Company will present its 14th annual studio dance workshop Friday and Saturday, Feb. 24 and 25, in the Grand Hall of the Neal Marshall Black Culture Center, 250 N. Jordan Ave., at IU Bloomington.

African American Dance Co.

The African American Dance Company

Print-Quality Photo

The mission of the dance workshop is to expose participants to dance from the African American and African Diaspora perspectives through master dance classes, panel discussions and enlightening dialogues. The workshop will include dance classes exploring West Indian folk, Afro Cuban traditional and contemporary modern dance.

"The dance workshop will give anyone a great opportunity to learn various dance forms and techniques that are not usually offered in the area of central Indiana. It is also about connecting, establishing new relationships and forging collaborations in the dance discipline with other dancers, teachers and performers," said Iris Rosa, director of the African American Dance Company and a professor of African American and African Diaspora studies in the IU College of Arts and Sciences.

The theme this year is "The Black Dance Experience: Learning and Respecting the Dance Discipline in African Diasporic Cultures."

This year's workshop features four distinguished guest artists:

  • Alfred Baker, founding director of the West Indian Folk Dance Company, who has performed and taught Afro-Caribbean dance forms internationally.
  • Joel Hall, co-founder of the Chicago City Theatre Company, artistic director and principal choreographer for the Joel Hall Dancers and director and chief instructor of its training studio.
  • Rogelio Kindelan-Nordet, who was director of the Folkloric Studies Department at Centro Nacional de Superacion de la Ensenanza Artistica from 1982 to 1985. He also served as professor of folkloric percussion at CNSEA, Pablo Milanes Foundation and Centro Nacional de Escuelas de Arte en Cuba.
  • Silfredo La O, who has toured professionally with Cutumba: Ballet Folklorico Afro Cubano for five years and with the modern dance company ODC in San Francisco from 2001 to 2003. He is the musical director of the Palomar College Drum and Dance Ensemble.

A panel discussion, which is free and open to the public, will take place at 7 p.m. Friday. The dance workshop's guest artists will lead a dialogue with the audience about their personal performing and teaching experiences, as well as answer questions. A dance showcase, featuring workshop highlights, is also free and open to the public and will be presented at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Neal Marshall Black Culture Center.

Registration is available through the African American Arts Institute website. The full registration fee is $120 for both Friday and Saturday for all ages. The cost for Saturday only -- which includes three classes -- is $70 for all ages. Single class fees are $25. For more information, contact Iris Rosa at or call 812-855-8079.

The workshop is co-sponsored by the African American Dance Company, African American and African Diaspora Studies, African American Arts Institute and the IU Office of Community and School Partnerships.