Andrew ChatfieldSeptember 6, 20235min
The day after arriving on campus, the Class of 2027 gathered on Andrus Field for a celebration of embodied practice—using your body to know the world. On Thursday August 31, over 700 first year students took part in the 16th annual “Common Moment” as part of new student orientation. The celebration also included new transfer students from both the Class of 2026 and the Class of 2025. Five faculty members from the Dance Department gave new students an opportunity to learn the eclectic and diverse world dance traditions taught at Wesleyan, and then to have fun performing those energetic dances…

Mike MavredakisMay 17, 20233min
Hands touching the sky. Hearts vibrating to the beat of an amplifier with the bass maxed out. Cowboy boots scattered among the grass. Sunglasses of every shape and shade imaginable. Through all the variance of outfits and personalities, there was one constant among the crowd—smiles so wide and bright a dentist could only smirk. From atop the pop-up Ferris wheel, all one could see was a swarm of students migrating to the stage and back into line for a dose of cotton candy—the energy burst needed to keep their hands up and feet moving. “Wes is about the community and…

Andrew ChatfieldMay 3, 202310min
Students from the “Dance as Activism” course this spring will perform a new movement piece based on excerpts from Shapiro-Silverberg Distinguished Writer in Residence Mahogany L. Browne‘s poetry collection “Chrome Valley” at Lincoln Center in New York on September 9. Their performance, called “Movement Through The Valley,” received its first showing in the Bessie Schönberg Dance Studio April 14. The “Dance as Activism” course is taught by Assistant Professor of the Practice in Dance and African American Studies Joya Powell. On May 8, the class will share individual projects—solos and duets, and a workshop­—in conversation with social issues of their…

Andrew ChatfieldMarch 22, 202312min
Through a series of intimate and informal salons, Wesleyan’s Embodying Antiracism Initiative Fellows shared some of the work they have created this year during  the program’s Think Tank. The salons are mini-festivals of arts, ideas, and activation, looking at works-in-progress and building community, said Stephanie McKee-Anderson, Executive Artistic Director of partnering organization Junebug Productions and Special Advisor to Provost Nicole Stanton. A Fellow might have the seed of a creation, so a salon could be a helpful place to dialogue about that idea, while the others might act as thought provocateurs. “What questions make a creator more excited about their…

Andrew ChatfieldFebruary 7, 20235min
Wesleyan University’s Center for the Arts has announced the highlights of its 2023 spring season, including world premiere dance and Connecticut premiere theater and music performances, as well as solo exhibitions by both alumni and current faculty. “The Center for the Arts is thrilled to be hosting several projects that consider, with such care, different scales of human existence, memory, and sense of belonging,” said Joshua Lubin-Levy '06, Director of the Center for the Arts. “From the urgency of ‘Ocean Filibuster,’ which takes up humanity’s relationship to the vastness of the ocean, to the intimacy of Carrie Yamaoka’s ’79 in…

Amy AlbertOctober 20, 20228min
Wesleyan University faculty and students played an important role at Middletown’s 2022 Amistad Journey to Freedom Community Day Celebration in Harbor Park Saturday, October 8. Event planners coordinated with Discovering Amistad to offer age-appropriate tours of the replica vessel, which arrived in Middletown one week earlier.   Jesse Nasta ’07, assistant professor of the practice in African American Studies, who wrote his honors thesis on Middletown’s Beman Triangle, was already signed up to participate, leading the 4th Annual Middletown Middle Passage Ceremony. “The Middle Passage and the Middle Passage Ceremony are an origin story of the Beman Triangle and other…

Olivia DrakeMay 15, 20172min
The West African Drumming and Dance Concert was held May 12 in the Center for the Arts Green. The event featured master drummer and visiting artist in residence Attah Poku and choreographer and artist in residence Iddi Saaka, joined by their 72 students, guest artists and 16 student drummers. This annual performance showcases the vibrancy of West African cultures through music and dance forms. On March 6, 2017, Ghana celebrated its 60th independence anniversary from British colonial rule. This spring’s West African Drumming and Dance concert was held in honor of the anniversary. Apart from the usual traditional dances, students also dressed…

Lauren RubensteinJanuary 17, 20171min
Associate Professor of Dance Hari Krishnan has been named one of "10 Toronto Stage Artists to Watch This Winter" by NOW Toronto magazine, which highlights his upcoming spring production, "Holy Cow(s)!" exploring cultural appropriation. It will run March 23-25 at Harbourfront Centre Theatre. The profile of Krishnan states: "A few years ago, Krishnan heated up the local dance scene with a sizzling, eyebrow-raising piece about queerness called SKIN. Now, just in time to melt winter's last snow comes a white-hot mixed program sending up ideas about gender, sexuality and cultural taboos. The night of solos and ensemble pieces includes works…

Olivia DrakeDecember 5, 20161min
The Worlds of Dance Concert, held Dec. 4 at Crowell Concert Hall, featured the works of five different dance courses in their semester-end culminating performance. Beginning and intermediate dance students performed works in various styles including Bharata Natyam (South Indian classical dance). The classes were taught by Pedro Alejandro, associate professor of dance; Susan Lourie, adjunct professor of dance; Hari Krishnan, associate professor of dance; and Katja Kolcio, associate professor of dance. (Photos by Rebecca Goldfarb Terry '19) (more…)

Olivia DrakeDecember 5, 20161min
The Center for the Arts hosted a West African Drumming and Dance Concert Dec. 2 at Crowell Concert Hall. The performance featured master drummer Emmanuel Attah Poku; choreographer and artist-in-residence Iddi Saaka; and more than 90 Wesleyan students. In addition, the Kiniwe African Dance Ensemble from Tufts University also performed at the concert. The event showcased the vibrancy of West African cultures through their music and dance forms. (Photos by Will Barr '18) (more…)

Cynthia RockwellSeptember 14, 20162min
A Connecticut dance event offered Associate Professor of Dance Katja Kolcio an additional way to explore her ongoing dance/movement project highlighting the effect of political forces at work in Ukraine. Last summer, Kolcio invited colleague and Associate Professor of Dance Nicole Stanton to join with two other dancers, both with ties to Ukraine, to create a dance. This event, Dance for Peace, was sponsored by Artists for World Peace, an organization founded and led by Wendy Black-Nasta P’07, with music director Robert Nasta MA ’98, P’07. Kolcio, who holds a doctorate in somatics, places the dance they created, “Steppe Land,”…