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CalArts Dance to Present Public Workshops in Partnership with L.A. Dance Project

CalArts Dance to Present Public Workshops in Partnership with L.A. Dance Project

Sept. 22 Event Will Introduce World-renowned New Faculty Along with Artists Who Inspire Them

Valencia, CA (Aug. 30, 2018)—This fall, under the leadership of dancer, choreographer, and Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance dean Dimitri Chamblas, California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) will present a series of public workshops, conversations, and open studio performances in partnership with L.A. Dance Project (LADP).

Taking place at the LADP creative headquarters in LA’s Arts District, the series will launch on Saturday, Sept. 22, with a day of participatory improvisations, repertory workshops, and moderated discussions featuring CalArts’ three newest critically- and internationally-acclaimed instructors: Nina Flagg, Spenser Theberge, and Samuel Wentz.

“School should not be a bubble,” said Chamblas. “When a dancer enters CalArts, they enter the dance world. We regard our students as the new generation of dancers contributing to the artistic culture of Los Angeles and beyond. Our collaboration with LADP unites CalArts, and its students and faculty, with this world-class center for performance and collaboration.”  

From the Paris Opera to a music video with Solange, from art galleries to the streets and back to campus, CalArts dancers have participated in an astounding number of collaborations since Chamblas took over as dean in summer 2017. In addition to LADP, CalArts Dance has also recently entered into exciting partnerships with Hauser & Wirth Los Angeles, France’s Centre National de la Danse, and the Paris Opera, among others soon to be announced.

Rosanna Gamson, Assistant Dean of the School of Dance, commented, “CalArts was founded as a community of working artists, and it is our intention with this LADP collaboration to continue that tradition. Los Angeles is an exciting capital of dance, so we want to ensure that our programming isn’t exclusive to CalArts or the dance community, but is intended for everyone.”

Using dance and dance-making as a point of departure, each of the four new faculty members will present a workshop in collaboration with someone who has inspired their work and practice:

  • Hip-Hop Dance instructor Nina Flagg is former principal dancer with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre and Philadelphia-based Puremovement. Flagg has worked with celebrated icons including Prince, Tina Turner, Stevie Wonder, and Bette Midler. Guest TBA. 
  • Ballet Technique instructor Spenser Theberge will collaborate with ballet dancer Jermaine Spivy to lead an improvisation workshop focusing on group-authored structures, looking to the group to make physical choices, coordinate decisions, and find compositional strategies. Theberge’s choreography has been commissioned and shown internationally, at The Korzo Theater, Gothenburg Opera Dance Company, Place des Arts, The Julliard School, and Queer Biennial III in L.A.
  • Contemporary Dance instructor Samuel Wentz will work with choreographer Katherine Helen Fisher of Safety Third Productions to teach a fun and joyous dance available to dancers and non-dancers alike. Over the course of his dance career, Wentz has appeared with leading companies, including Trisha Brown Dance Company, Jmy James Kidd, Wally Cardona & Jennifer Lacey, and Mark Morris Dance Group.

Schedule for the event:
10-11:30 am: Spenser Theberge
11:30 am-1pm: Samuel Wentz
1-2 pm:  lunch
2-3:30 pm: Nina Flagg

This is the first in a series of public CalArts Dance events offered at L.A. Dance Project Studios at 2245 E. Washington Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90021, the next event in the series, featuring MFA students and recent alumnx, will be Dance Happy Hour on Sunday, October 28 at 5 pm.  

The event on September 22 is open to the public. Doors will open at 9:30 a.m. and the first session will begin promptly at 10 a.m. Tickets are $5. Please click here for tickets and reservations.  

Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes that they can move in, bring water, and be ready to go five minutes before workshop start times. 

The Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance at CalArts’s mission is to educate the complete dance artist—agile, intelligent, and in command of an expanded skill-set to meet the fast-evolving demands of professional dance. The comprehensive BFA and MFA programs build high-level proficiencies in performance technique, choreography, dance production technology, and critical understanding of the art form, all within a global cultural context. Concentrated production seasons of aesthetically diverse work thrive in an atmosphere of creative exchange between professionally motivated students and a faculty of practicing artists.

California Institute of the Arts has set the pace for educating professional artists since 1970. Offering rigorous undergraduate and graduate degree programs through six schools—Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater—CalArts has championed creative excellence, critical reflection, and the development of new forms and expressions. As successive generations of faculty and alumni have helped shape the landscape of contemporary arts, the Institute first envisioned by Walt Disney encompasses a vibrant, eclectic community with global reach, inviting experimentation, independent inquiry, and active collaboration and exchange among artists, artistic disciplines and cultural traditions. 

L.A. Dance Project is a platform for the development, creation, support and presentation of world-class dance in Los Angeles. Comprised of an internationally acclaimed dance company, a performance space in LA’s Arts District and a program of media initiatives, LADP seeks to foster dance-centered artistic collaborations across all disciplines, cultures and communities in Los Angeles and around the globe.

Since its founding, L.A. Dance Project’s company has toured and given master classes at international venues and festivals including the Holland Festival, the Edinburgh International Festival, La Maison de la Danse, the Saitama Arts Center, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, Shanghai and Beijing Opera House and Theatre du Chatelet. In the US, the company has performed at venues including Jacob’s Pillow, Brooklyn Academy of Music and New York City Center. In its home city of Los Angeles, the company has performed at The Music Center’s Walt Disney Concert Hall, MOCA, Union Station, The Theatre at Ace Hotel, and The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.