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Thursday, November 12, 2020

Call to Artists: The Flynn Announces New Performance Series

Posted By on Thu, Nov 12, 2020 at 2:49 PM

The Flynn marquee in March - FILE: MARGARET GRAYSON ©️ SEVEN DAYS
  • File: Margaret Grayson ©️ Seven Days
  • The Flynn marquee in March
The Flynn is bringing some magic back to Burlington with a new live performance series called the Window on Main. The performing arts center is currently accepting applications from local artists for the new venture. The series coincides with the prime holiday shopping weekends of December 11 through 13, and December 18 through 20, and will feature multiple 40-minute sets each day.

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Friday, October 30, 2020

Dance Video "The Activation" Champions Voting and Social Justice

Posted By on Fri, Oct 30, 2020 at 2:34 PM

Still from "The Activation" - COURTESY OF HANNA SATTERLEE
  • Courtesy of Hanna Satterlee
  • Still from "The Activation"
If you haven’t voted, this video’s for you. If you have, it’s still for you. “The Activation” combines dance, music, interviews and information to help viewers turn confusion into clarity, inertia into action.

Part music video and part rally for change, the five-minute work captures 22 Vermonters moving and dancing together on the Statehouse lawn and steps in Montpelier. In brief testimonials, they share their experiences and hopes for this election and beyond. In closing, the video invites viewers to consider supporting seven social justice organizations and then asks, “How will YOU activate?”

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Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Dance Artist Hannah Dennison Wins 2020 Herb Lockwood Prize

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2020 at 3:15 PM

Rehearsal for 'The Quarry Project' - COURTESY OF JULIA BARSTOW
  • Courtesy of Julia Barstow
  • Rehearsal for 'The Quarry Project'
Hannah Dennison has created and produced dance pieces in the abandoned Rose Street Bakery, on the Waterfront, for the Flynn in Burlington and at the Kent Museum in Calais, among other sites. Her work, spanning more than 35 years, is highly community based, collaborative and innovative — and it has garnered her the 2020 Herb Lockwood Prize in the Arts.

Called by some the MacArthur Fellows of Vermont, the Herb Lockwood Prize honors “people who not only create their art at the highest artistic level, but have also nurtured the state’s other practitioners of that art,” according to a press release. Dennison received the $10,000 prize at an outdoor ceremony today at the BCA Center in Burlington.

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Monday, September 7, 2020

Vermont Dance Alliance Launches Online Class Series

Posted By on Mon, Sep 7, 2020 at 1:29 PM

  • Courtesy of Hanna Satterlee
The Vermont Dance Alliance is partnering with local businesses to launch an online dance school featuring various styles of dance and benefitting Vermont nonprofit organizations.

The class series, called "Resilient Dancing," will feature 11 three-week classes from different instructors. The offerings include tango, belly dance and hip-hop; lessons in theatrical choreography and interacting with surroundings; and specific classes for families and older adults.

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Thursday, July 2, 2020

The Flynn Cancels Its Teaching Artists Program for Fall

Posted By on Thu, Jul 2, 2020 at 10:55 AM

Students at the Integrated Arts Academy in 2017 - COURTESY OF THE FLYNN
  • Courtesy of the Flynn
  • Students at the Integrated Arts Academy in 2017
The Flynn has canceled its teaching artists program for the fall semester, putting a halt to a program that employs about 10 artists to work in Burlington schools.

“At the heart of the matter, it’s a public health consideration,” said the Flynn’s interim executive director Charles Smith. “The complications are just too great.”

State guidelines for Vermont schools are explicit: “No outside visitors and volunteers except for employees or contracted service providers for the purpose of special education or required support services, as authorized by the school or district.”

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Friday, June 26, 2020

Hopkins Center and Dance Theatre of Harlem Launch a New Partnership

Posted By on Fri, Jun 26, 2020 at 4:02 PM

Dance Theatre of Harlem performing 'Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven' - COURTESY OF DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM
  • Courtesy of Dance Theatre of Harlem
  • Dance Theatre of Harlem performing 'Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven'
This summer marks the start of a multiyear collaboration between the Hopkins Center for the Arts at Dartmouth College and Dance Theatre of Harlem. During three summer residencies, the partners will create a new ballet work, expand experiential learning opportunities in dance, support links between choreography and academic scholarship, and engage the arts as a tool for social change.

Based in New York City, Dance Theatre of Harlem has been shaping the ballet world for more than 50 years. Its founder, Arthur Mitchell, was the first Black principal dancer at New York City Ballet and was a protégée of Russian-born choreographer George Balanchine.

Dance Theatre of Harlem offers training and career opportunities to dancers of color and celebrates African American culture through the arts. Through its work, the multiethnic company has made the art of ballet more inclusive and expanded its audience.

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Thursday, July 18, 2019

Bookstock Features Poetry and Dance Tribute to Poet Mary Oliver

Posted By on Thu, Jul 18, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Dancers rehearse Sarabande - COURTESY OF PEG BRIGHTMAN
  • Courtesy of Peg Brightman
  • Dancers rehearse Sarabande
Poetry, said Mary Oliver in a rare 2015 interview with the radio program "On Being," “is very old. It’s very sacred. It wishes for a community. It’s a community ritual, certainly. And that’s why, when you write a poem, you write it for anybody and everybody.”

Oliver won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1984 and the National Book Award for Poetry in 1992. She also had New England connections, teaching at Bennington College from 1996 to 2001 and living in Provincetown, Mass. for many years. 

Oliver’s work is ubiquitous across Instagram, and read at both weddings and funerals. A New York Times obituary called her “a phenomenon: a poet whose work sold strongly.”  When she died in January, the loss was felt not just by the poetry community, but by many fans outside it.

“Mary Oliver’s poetry is [about] more than other poets reading her,” said Vermont poet Laura Foley. “She didn’t put herself up on a pedestal. Her words are very clear, she uses images from nature. And she has a message, which is, ‘Slow down, look around you.’”

Foley wrote a poem called “It Matters” upon hearing of Oliver’s death that borrows and appreciates various lines of Oliver’s poetry, which are presented in italics. Foley said she knew these lines by heart when she sat down to write the poem.

“It matters that I clutch / my stack of her books—those fields of light—” she wrote, “now that her body has gone / into the cottage of darkness.”

Foley's poem and others will be featured in Homage to Mary Oliver in Poetry and Dance on Thursday, July 25, ArtisTree Community Arts Center & Gallery in South Pomfret at 7:30 p.m. The multidisciplinary performance kicks off Bookstock, an annual literary festival that takes place in Woodstock from Friday to Sunday, July 26 to 28. 

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Friday, August 17, 2018

Cultural Mosaic: Susmita Dhakal Brings Bollywood Vibe to A2VT

Posted By on Fri, Aug 17, 2018 at 11:28 AM

  • Courtesy of Susmita Dhakal
  • Susmita Dhakal
While some people treat "diversity" and "inclusivity" as buzzwords, for Susmita Dhakal those terms are guiding principles. Dhakal, a Bollywood dance performer, is a member of the local Afro-pop group, A2VT.

"I've always been the person [who] gets involved in different cultures because I feel that's the way I grow," said the University of Vermont sophomore. A native of Nepal born to Bhutanese refugees, Dhakal is the only A2VT member who's not from the African diaspora. She joined the group about six months ago.

"She brings a bit of Bollywood vibe to [the group]," said A2VT manager David Cooper. "They embraced her."

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Vermont Arts Council Exhibit Spotlights New American Artists

Posted By on Tue, Jul 17, 2018 at 12:24 PM

Aline Mukiza (with drum) and Burundian dancers - COURTESY OF JEFF WOODWARD
  • Courtesy of Jeff Woodward
  • Aline Mukiza (with drum) and Burundian dancers
The Vermont Arts Council is on a mission to broaden the definition of who a Vermont artist is, said director Karen Mittelman. "There are new groups of Americans who are enriching [the] landscape in ways that most people don't see and recognize," she said.

Mittelman is hopeful that the arts agency's latest photo exhibit will introduce residents and visitors to the state's diverse cultural landscape.

With help from the Vermont Folklife Center, the VAC has assembled a collection of photographs for its Spotlight Gallery that feature the music, dance and fiber traditions of local Bhutanese, Bosnian, Burundian, Karen, Somali and Tibetan communities.

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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Dancing the Day Away With Vermont Dance Alliance and Artists Imperative

Posted By on Sun, Jun 17, 2018 at 4:44 PM

Dancers kicking off "Traces" at the top of Church Street - SADIE WILLIAMS
  • Sadie Williams
  • Dancers kicking off "Traces" at the top of Church Street
On Saturday, June 16, Burlington was struck by a confluence of dance-related events: "Traces," an all-day, multi-venue, outdoor performance hosted by the Vermont Dance Alliance, and "Lime Peach Mint: High Crimes Misdemeanors, Bountiful Performances" by Artists' Imperative at Maglianero. What follows is a diary of observations from the day.

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