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ISSUE 121 VOL 1 PUBLISHED 9/21/2007

Seniors return from American Dream festival

By Margaret Wade
Arts Editor

Friday, September 21, 2007

The Department of Dance has a new spring in its step this fall. Sarah Goldberg '08 and Tim Rehborg '08 are back from the prestigious American Dance Festival Six Week School and ready to apply their experience to Companydance and the campus dance community.

After the America Dance Festival (ADF), these dance majors are bringing more than transfer credit back to campus; Goldberg and Rehborg are bursting with a variety of new skills, technique and ideas. The ADF Six Week School is a professional training program for four hundred students from around the world from June 7 to July 22 at Duke University in Durham, N.C.

"From the opening day to the farewell party, there is the ever-present possibility of experiencing dance in a new way," ADF Dean Donna Faye Burchfield said.

Since 1934, ADF has nurtured choreographers and dancers from around the world to explore and create in a supportive environment. Dubbed "one of the world's most important institutions" by the New York Times, the American Dance Festival is integral to the world of modern dance.

Goldberg and Rehborg heard about ADF through other Oles who had participated in the past, who said that ADF is something you absolutely have to do. The rigorous application process may seem daunting, but Rehborg urges: "Don't be daunted by the nearly $2000 price tag because there are lots of scholarships available."

American Dance Festival demands endurance and energy; Goldberg and Rehborg danced about six to eight hours a day. ADF offers a broad range of technique classes, optional masters classes and supplementary classes.

Each student takes four core classes, such as Movement Therapy, Pilates, Dance Notation, Thai Message, and African dance.

Rehborg raved about the Improv Jams on Saturday nights, where dancers cut loose with live music and tons of energy. Goldberg's favorite perk for being at ADF was the free tickets for at least sixteen shows. Goldberg was thrilled to see the Mark Morris dance group from NYC and Shen Wei Dance Arts.

In the first few days of the program, the dancers auditioned for reparatory. Goldberg's reparatory class was based on Dr. Pearl Primurst, a politically-charged work that allowed the dancers to recreate a new work. Goldberg enjoyed reading Pearl's journals and African tribe field books in the Duke Archives. Rehborg was cast in a piece called "Little Long Look" that included an eight-five foot long vinyl floor.

At the end of the six weeks, they performed for the rest of the school. "Watching the finished product is always a surprise. It's wonderful to see what each group does with a work," Goldberg said.

Looking forward to the new school year, Goldberg and Rehborg will dance for Companydance and also choreograph their senior show. "I ended up with seven great dancers," Goldberg said. Goldberg will also dance in Professor Janice Roberts' new work, as well as Keith Johnson's Company.

Rehborg is also excited for new works. "I'm setting a structured impovisational piece on a group of five dancers. ADF actually introduced me to the art of improvisation, and I got to study with many great improvisational dancers. I'm excited to embark on this new creative journey!"

He is also performing in Brad Garner's residency in the coming spring, as well as performing in the Keith Johnson Company this fall.

This experience in the world of dance gave Goldberg and Rehborg direction in their future dance careers. "It helped me become a more competent performer, and I learned a lot about the dance world," Rehborg said.

"ADF is an absolutely priceless experience to grow as a dancer and choreographer. It also allows you to make incredible connections in the dance world," Goldberg said.

"The best part was meeting people," Rehborg agrees, "like when I ran into Emmy-winning Pilobolus dancers at the bar."

Passion exudes from Goldberg and Rehberg. "Never say that you can't dance," Goldberg said. "Everyone can dance. Even if you think you have two left feet, give it a try."

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