Conference to focus on multicultural traditions shaping jazz dance
More than 100 jazz artists, educators and practitioners from the United States, Canada and Europe will visit campus July 30-Aug. 2 as Salve Regina’s dance program hosts the National Dance Education Organization’s jazz dance conference.
Organized by associate professor Lindsay Guarino, “Jazz Dance: Hybrids, Fusions, Connections, Community” is designed to deepen participants’ understanding of what jazz dance is today in all its vibrant shapes and forms. Guarino is an active member of the National Dance Education Organization community and the jazz instructor for the organization’s online professional development institute.
The first jazz conference, held in 2016, was inspired by “Jazz Dance: A History of the Roots and Branches,” a book edited by Guarino and Providence College professor Wendy Oliver. This second conference builds upon the overwhelming success and sense of community that was felt in 2016.
“Community is central to the Africanist aesthetics at the core of jazz dance, and the NDEO community is passionate about honoring the roots of jazz while recognizing the rich multicultural traditions that shape jazz dance today,” Guarino said.
Unique features of “Hybrids, Fusions, Connections, Community” include a clambake in Ochre Court with dancing to jazz music by MSD Quintet, morning jazz jams and screenings of the documentaries “Transmission: Roots to Branches” and “Everything Remains Raw.”
Select session titles provide a glimpse into the range and nature of topics covered at the conference:
- “From Lindy Hop to Hip Hop: The Real Jazz Dance Continuum”
- “The West African Roots of Solo Vernacular Jazz”
- “Reflective and Connective: Jazz Dance Improvisation as Personal and Communal Expression”
- “Jazz Dance in Higher Education: Moving Toward a Manifesto for Curricular Change”
- “Nurturing Embodiment through Ritual and Community: An Interpretation of African Diaspora Ethos”
- “Choreography as Community: Choreographing Women in Dance”
Eight students and alumni – Rose Bogardus ’22, Sara Chlastawa ’20, Michaela Darragh ’20, Morgan George ’22, Allison Deluca ’21, Marissa Masson ‘19, Kenzie Stewart ’21 and Maddie Stewart ’19 – will volunteer during the conference and participate in classes and events. They will also work with Kimberly Cooper from Calgary-based Decidedly Jazz Danceworks to learn a piece that will be performed at the conference and throughout the 2019-2020 academic year.
Established as a nonprofit organization in 1998, the National Dance Education Organization supports dance and dance education in the United States. In addition to its annual national conference, it hosts smaller special topics conferences, publishes the Journal of Dance Education and Dance Education in Practice, and offers dance education courses via its online professional development institute.