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NMSU Dance Program offers unique summer workshop

The New Mexico State University Dance Program will partner with the Las Cruces Symphony Chamber Orchestra Aug. 4-10 to offer a summer workshop and performance opportunity for dancers at all experience levels from age 11 years old and up.


Dancers will be divided into three levels and have classes in ballet, modern, jazz and hip-hop technique. The classes will be taught by NMSU dance faculty and students at NMSU?s Rentfrow Gym. Participants will take three dance technique classes and rehearse daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for a culminating performance of ?Appalachian Spring? and ?Carnival of the Animals? Aug. 9-10 in the Center for the Arts accompanied by the Las Cruces Symphony Chamber Orchestra conducted by Lonnie Klein. This will be the orchestra?s first performance in the Center for the Arts.

The ?Carnival of the Animals? is a musical suite of 14 movements by French composer Camille Saint-Saens. The work follows a zoological program with the first movement featuring the lion. Elephants, monkeys and other animals are featured as the program progresses.

?Appalachian Spring? by Aaron Copland is set in Appalachia in the Depression era. This performance will be an original choreographic version telling the story of a young woman who upon the death of her mother is forced to leave school to care for her father and siblings. The story culminates with the marriage of her father and the introduction of a new mother, freeing the young woman to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher.

The workshop costs $175, which includes use of a costume and two tickets to the final performances. Registration is under way. Proceeds from the workshop and performances will help fund Methods is Learning Kinesthetically, an outreach program at Fairacres Elementary School that promotes learning through movement.

Tickets for the performances Aug. 9 at 7 p.m. and Aug. 10 at 2:30 p.m. will be available to the community.

For more information or to register for the workshop, contact Ann Gavit, director of the Pan American Dance Institute, at 575-646-2070 or agavit@nmsu.edu.