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The transformative aspects of modern dance is captivating to all

Shelli Reeves | 8/8/2014, 11:58 a.m.
Kevin Parker, a trainee whose 4th year of being in the Summer Dance Intensive, feels as though this program is ...

The Summer Dance Intensive program ran by Inlet Dance Theatre created a phenomenal inspiring performance that demonstrated young talent of students and skills of professionals and trainees.

The Inlet Dance Theatre gathered 30 artists—Inlet Company, apprentices, trainees, and students— at the Idea Center for Summer Dance Intensive on June 18, 2014 for the 14th year. Some of the students who joined had never danced before while some of the people were experience dancers ready to take on a new part of their life. This wide array of students were able to participate because Inlet focuses on giving back to the community and allowing the focus to be on young people throughout the summer. For that reason they had a free matinee show for children on Wednesday and another free show for the general public on Thursday. Both shows were amazing and true talent was demonstrated.

For viewers who love dance, like myself, the strength, artistry, and overall choreography was delightful to watch. The lines, along with the gracefulness of movement were amazing to watch. The improvisation piece was my favorite due to their comfort of the performers on stage. All of the students stood on stage and the audience chose three to perform. Bill Wade, Founder and Executive/Artistic Director gave them three motion prompts to inspire their artistic movements. The three people began to dance and were joined by other students to create a magnificent array of movement and expression. This piece demonstrated what the students learned at the summer dance intensive and how they were able to grow within this dance form by gaining confidence.

The experience felt by Shanell Pritchett, who particularly has no interest in modern dance – said “The experience I had was absolutely amazing. I’m typically not a fan of modern dance, but I think that all of the performances were worth my time of viewing. The choreography was put together exceptionally well. My favorite piece of the show was ‘Close Shave’. You could clearly understand the story line through their performance. Every expression of motion was done in perfection. I would definitely go and see the entire show again if afforded the opportunity. Bill Wade is a remarkable mentor, choreographer, and motivator. It was easy to tell that the students, who performed pieces of Bill Wade, wanted to make sure they made him proud. And from what I viewed from my seat, I’m sure Bill Wade was pleased.” This quote from Pritchett suggests, that even a person who doesn’t understand or care for modern dance, would have been pleased with Inlet summer Dance Theater performance.

Kevin Parker, a trainee whose 4th year of being in the Summer Dance Intensive, feels as though this program is a safe space with constant support, a home away from home. At the Summer Dance Intensive, Parker tried new things and was able to learn modern dance. Parker began dancing after it was recommended by a friend. The summer before his 10th grade year he auditioned and was accepted into the program. He had not danced before that. Everyone involved supported him especially the mentor provided by the Summer Dance Intensive and Bill Wade. As a Black dancer, Parker experienced no obstacles because of his color. He has been able to follow his dream of dancing and after his third year of doing the Summer Dance Intensive, 18 year old, Parker was asked to join the trainee program of Inlet Dance Theatre where he is learning more about his art form of modern dance. This decision to join Inlet Dance Theatre did come with a choice: go to college or stay and professionally dance. The decision was based off of his love for dance, the people who gave him support and the fact that the life of a dancer is short. You cannot dance forever but you can always go to college. But Parker is following his passion.

But most importantly, to Kevin Parker “Dance is Life” and for many of the people involved in the Summer Dance Intensive dance is much more than an art form it is a part of who they are. Dance has taught them life lessons and how to get up when they have fallen. Inlet Dance Theatre knows the importance of dance and by teaching various students throughout the summer and allowing them to demonstrate their skills to the general public is magnificent.