Springfield High School: Making dance moves...

I am slightly behind on blog posts after the recent purchase of a video camera has kept me from writing. I have instead been focusing more on filming and learning, once again, everything I still don't know about my computer. Or perhaps I am responding to the recent ice and snowstorms that are causing school delays and cancellations by writing on paper with a pen, a comforting act often neglected because of the ease e-mail and internet search engines provide.The media you will see here is documenting my fall residency at Springfield High School in my lovely hometown. I worked with P.E. classes, a chorus class, and Russian and German students teaching and learning modern dance, choreography, social dance a la Lawrence Welk, and native folk dances. Between helping kids take weight in their arms and wooing students with images of lederhosen, we managed to both learn choreography and create new choreography, helping students see themselves as movers and dance-makers. I was blessed with overwhelming support from staff who welcomed me into their classrooms and often participated with their students, which created environments rich with play, laughter, and sometimes confusion.Earlier in this blog, I posted a link to an edition of the Green Horn, the high school's newspaper with an article on this particular residency. In this post, I include an interview from the school's production of Green Horn Live, a news broadcast produced by students every Friday. I am indebted to students Hanna Reeves and Tom Benton for this interview, all video clips, and their stellar behind-the-scenes tech work. Also for their cheerfulness and and enthusiasm. Note Ashley in ballet class, something I do more than any of my urban modern dance friends may have ever imagined possible for this barefoot goddess.Also included are clips from the school's recent Empty Bowl Dinner, an evening to raise funds for Springfield's Family Center. The event included a student-cooked meal (made by culinary arts tech students), beautiful student-made pottery, and student performances of music, drama and dance. Here you will see the some of the Russian students performing a Korobushka and some of the German students performing a D'hammerschmledsgselin. Later in the evening P.E. students performed an original piece of choreography based on athletic duets they created together, Eliza Pennell performed a solo she choreographed for our independent study work together, and a few modern dancers from my class at the Dance Factory performed a co-choreographed dance we began in class and completed during a weekend rehearsal together. The night was a sweet treat for me because it allowed me to see the diverse and rich accomplishments of these students and a school that committed to supporting an artist at work for six weeks. I am incredibly grateful to all who made this experience possible, especially the students who opened themselves to trying something that may have felt scary and outside their comfort zone.I thoroughly enjoy sharing Springfield with these folks.