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Dance culture reaches classroom, recreation activities

Subcultures exist everywhere and campus is no exception. One such culture is dance and various forms are represented among the school’s activities including drama and P.E. classes.

“There was supposed to be more dancing in Sam Fisher’, (’03) Aaron Rios’, (’03) and Kevin Davis’ (’02) skit in chapel,” Brandy McCann, ’04, said. “It didn’t go through because things got unorganized, but we watched a couple movies like The Wizard of Oz because of the dancing.”

Beyond the confines of the classroom, students express their talent in many ways.

“I’ve been in dance for 13 years,” Emily Goertzen, ’04, said. “I used to be in gymnastics too, but I quit and am now in jazz, tap, point, and ballet. I dance Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, about eight hours a week combined. My favorite kind of dance would be jazz because it’s hard to do; it’s more of a challenge, but it’s the most fun. I’ve been in jazz for about 11 years.”

Obviously a lot of weekly practice time is put into perfecting a dance technique.

“I went to Emily’s dance recital, and her dancing is amazing,” Clinton Jeffries, ’04, said. “I mean, she’s really good. I think she must work hard to become as good as she is.”

Dancing sometimes requires many hours of work to perfect, but other students are not quite as serious. Several varieties of dance are available to suit one’s interests.

“I started taking creative dance when I was six or seven,” Krista Moore, ’03, said. “I didn’t do jazz very long. From eight to ten I did creative worship dance. I’ve taken ballet, but just long enough to get the basics. I started taking Jewish dance when I moved here; I was in that for two years. I did swing for fun. I started ballroom dancing, in which I learned dances like the fox trot and the waltz, as well as Spanish dancing. It’s been on and off in my life.”

There are some on campus administration who have participated in different activities involving dance as well.

“I was in a dance concert at Fresno State with Gus Solomons many moons ago,” Eunie McEntee, P.E. coach, said. “We did about four concerts at Fresno State. That’s when they had creative movement and those types of things. It was so much fun. Gus trained in Martha Graham’s dance studio. Martha Graham was the founder of modern dance; she danced until she died.”

It seems Solomons is now following in Graham’s footsteps.

“I’m dancing on momentum now,”” the 62-year-old told the New York Times for an article on keeping a dancing career while aging, at www.mit.edu. “”You can do more on momentum than on muscles.””

For more information on Martha Graham, check out www.kennedy-center.org; for information on instruction in dancing in Fresno, call The Dance Studio at 559-432-0267.

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