Monday, April 25
Cynthia Crews, Lawrence Ballet Theatre Artistic Director, and Olivia Hernández, Dance Program Coordinator arrive in Skokie, IL on Monday to prep kit bags for over one hundred ballet dancers from across the Midwest region.
Wednesday, April 27
On Wednesday morning, Lawrence Ballet Theatre departs bright and early from the Lawrence Amtrak station, en route to Chicago, IL.
Thursday, April 28 (Festival Day 1)
Thursday was a full day of Ballet technique, Modern dance, Female Variations classes, and a Men’s Class, in addition to a pointe shoe seminar led by a Bloch representative. Scholarship auditions to several competitive summer dance programs were held early in the day, for which several of our young dancers auditioned. Sophie Bracker Sturm, Junior Company Member, was selected as an alternate for the Glenda Brown Choreography Project’s Partial Tuition Scholarship. Congratulations, Sophie! Lawrence Ballet Theatre had the honor of opening Thursday’s evening performances with ODD : EVEN, choreographed by Juliet Remmers, an alumni of the School of Dance.
Friday, April 27 (Day 2)
The company experienced another full day of classes on Friday, including ballet technique, Contemporary, and pointe classes, and a nutrition seminar led by a health professional. A cash scholarship audition was held in the morning, and Senior Company member Azucena “Zuzu” Melchor was selected as an alternate to receive the National Choreography Intensive Dancer Scholarship. Congratulations, Zuzu! Lawrence Ballet Theatre company members were joined by two male students of the School of Dance, Giosúe Ferrara and Oliver Frankenfeld, who participated in special male-orientated classes such as a Men’s ballet class and a Pas de Deux class. On Friday night, the company performed Symphony Grande, choreographed by visiting artist Denise Williams, as part of the evening’s performance.
Saturday, April 28 (Day 3)
Saturday was host to the final day of classes and seminars. Throughout the day, the company participated in a Modern, a Character, and several ballet technique classes. Lawrence Ballet Theatre was selected to perform Meetings Along the Edge, choreographed by visiting artist Kelly Brunk, as part of Saturday’s Gala Performance – a great honor! Following the Gala Performance, LBT joined the additional 18 participating companies in a banquet ceremony where they honored the Festival scholarship winners and were treated to a video announcing next year’s National RDA Festival, held in Phoenix, Arizona.
Over the course of the weekend, the company was taught by such faculty as Giselle Deya, Assistant Director of Bhakti Victor Ulltate Performing Arts; Vladmir Djouloukhadze; Gina Gardner-Walter, Associate Professor of Dance at Wright University; Daniil Gaifullin, faculty instructor for the Tulsa Ballet Center for Dance Education; Kristin Hakala, faculty member at Maple Conservatory of Dance; Nick Pupillo, Artistic Director of Visceral Dance Chicago; Rosanna Ruffo, Ballet Mistress for the Butler Ballet Company; Mauro Villaneuva, Co-Director of The Joffrey Workshop Texas; Julie Voris, instructor and Master Trainer with BeachBody; and Tong Wang, Assistant Professor of Dance at the University of California.
The Lawrence Ballet Theatre would like to sincerely thank our School of Dance sponsors for the opportunity to participate in and experience a fun few days filled with special dance classes and performance opportunities.