On September 21 at 5 pm CityDance OnStage Ignite Artist S. J. Ewing brings the joy of dance to #CapitolHill with Australia Home Land. This #FREE performance at the Hill Center features S. J. Ewing & Dancers, as well as, our #DREAM and Conservatory dancers.

*This performance is made possible through a grant from The Capitol Hill Community Foundation, and with the support of The Hill Center and CityDance.

Journey to Dance Gallery Festival

Congrats to CityDance Conservatory Dancer Mariano Zamora! He won the #NYCDA National Teen Male Outstanding Dancer 2nd runner up dancing a solo! 

Photo Credit: Theo Kossenas media4artists

Congrats to CityDance Conservatory Dancer Mariano Zamora! He won the #NYCDA National Teen Male Outstanding Dancer 2nd runner up dancing a solo!

Photo Credit: Theo Kossenas media4artists

Danielle Woodard interned with CityDance this summer in the Marketing Department. She will be a senior at the University of Maryland, College Park pursuing two full bachelor’s degrees: English – Language & Literature, and Communication – Public Relations. 

Q:  How long have you been dancing? 

A: I have been dancing for almost 15 years now! I spent the first portion of my dance career was in a studio where I studied ballet, jazz and modern. Then when I got to high school, I traded in my pointe shoes for pom-poms and joined my school’s dance team. I absolutely loved being able to share the joy of dance in the form of school spirit. That amazing experience encouraged me to audition for dance team in college, and I am proud to say that I am now headed into my 4th year on the University of Maryland dance team!

Q: What influenced you to apply for an internship with CityDance?

A: When applying for internships, I remembered CityDance because two friends of mine on dance team used to dance here and told me how wonderful of a place it was. In addition, I remembered the great things Megan Piluk (CityDance Social Media & Development Coordinator) said about her intern experience with CityDance back when she was a UMD student. Sure enough, I saw that CityDance was hiring communication/marketing interns for the summer, and I just knew that applying was the right decision!

Q: What do you hope to do when you graduate? 

A: Aside from academics, I very much value literature, music and dance. So after venturing down the public relations track, I now know that after I graduate, my goal is to do communications/PR work for a company affiliated with the literary or performing arts! 

Q: What skills/lessons have you learned from your internship that you will take with you? 

A: CityDance has taught me several types of skills. I’ve learned the proper way to pitch a magazine, the organization needed to prepare a marketing plan, and the creative process behind social media. I’ve learned how vital it is to communicate well with coworkers, the importance of strong relationships with affiliated companies, and the significance of understanding the value that you personally bring to your company as a whole. But most importantly, I have learned how truly wonderful it is to work for a company that is so devoted to its cause. 


Q: What was your favorite CityDance performance that you attended/worked?

A: Working the C & Y Concert has been my favorite CityDance performance so far. Seeing all of the hard work that CityDance students put in come to life and seeing their faces light up on stage was truly heartwarming. I got to see the joy of dance reflected in their eyes, and in turn it reminded me of my own experiences as a young dancer. It really was a magical moment!

Danielle Woodard interned with CityDance this summer in the Marketing Department. She will be a senior at the University of Maryland, College Park pursuing two full bachelor’s degrees: English – Language & Literature, and Communication – Public Relations.

Q: How long have you been dancing?

A: I have been dancing for almost 15 years now! I spent the first portion of my dance career was in a studio where I studied ballet, jazz and modern. Then when I got to high school, I traded in my pointe shoes for pom-poms and joined my school’s dance team. I absolutely loved being able to share the joy of dance in the form of school spirit. That amazing experience encouraged me to audition for dance team in college, and I am proud to say that I am now headed into my 4th year on the University of Maryland dance team!

Q: What influenced you to apply for an internship with CityDance?

A: When applying for internships, I remembered CityDance because two friends of mine on dance team used to dance here and told me how wonderful of a place it was. In addition, I remembered the great things Megan Piluk (CityDance Social Media & Development Coordinator) said about her intern experience with CityDance back when she was a UMD student. Sure enough, I saw that CityDance was hiring communication/marketing interns for the summer, and I just knew that applying was the right decision!

Q: What do you hope to do when you graduate?

A: Aside from academics, I very much value literature, music and dance. So after venturing down the public relations track, I now know that after I graduate, my goal is to do communications/PR work for a company affiliated with the literary or performing arts!

Q: What skills/lessons have you learned from your internship that you will take with you?

A: CityDance has taught me several types of skills. I’ve learned the proper way to pitch a magazine, the organization needed to prepare a marketing plan, and the creative process behind social media. I’ve learned how vital it is to communicate well with coworkers, the importance of strong relationships with affiliated companies, and the significance of understanding the value that you personally bring to your company as a whole. But most importantly, I have learned how truly wonderful it is to work for a company that is so devoted to its cause.


Q: What was your favorite CityDance performance that you attended/worked?

A: Working the C & Y Concert has been my favorite CityDance performance so far. Seeing all of the hard work that CityDance students put in come to life and seeing their faces light up on stage was truly heartwarming. I got to see the joy of dance reflected in their eyes, and in turn it reminded me of my own experiences as a young dancer. It really was a magical moment!

This summer the “Dancing in One Language” Camp for CityDance #DREAM students was held from the African American Civil War Museum. Students from CityDance DREAM sites attended including JO Wilson Elementary, Oyster-Adams Elementary School, Brightwood Education Campus, and C.W. Harris Elementary School.

Campers put on performances, took dance classes and went on exciting field trips during the summer including the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, Washington Mystics game and Sandy Point State Park!

This summer the “Dancing in One Language” Camp for CityDance #DREAM students was held from the African American Civil War Museum. Students from CityDance DREAM sites attended including JO Wilson Elementary, Oyster-Adams Elementary School, Brightwood Education Campus, and C.W. Harris Elementary School.

Campers put on performances, took dance classes and went on exciting field trips during the summer including the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, Washington Mystics game and Sandy Point State Park!

The Alumni Initiative
Fresh CityDance alum Matthew McLaughlin gives advice for seniors applying to college dance programs and talks about how CityDance prepared him for his freshman year SUNY Purchase. He also talks about his experience performing with CityDance Community Program DREAM students this summer.

Alumni Initiative

Dear CityDance Friends,

Wrapping up a jam-packed 2013/14 season, I am excited to share some highlights of what’s coming in 2014/15! This year offers opportunities for all: dazzling dance for the arts patron, new horizons for the DREAM student, and the next level of high caliber training for students at the School & Conservatory.

Kicking off this year’s OnStage performance series is the return of Dance Theatre of Harlem in October, followed by Jessica Lang Dance in March, and Gallim Dance in April. Closing our season on May 9th at the Lincoln Theatre is our annual dance spectacular, DREAMscape!

OnStage Ignite, our springboard for emerging talent, grows with the addition of Jason Garcia Ignacio who will choreograph original work as part of our annual collaboration with The Phillips Collection. He is in good company with fellow Ignite artists, Asanga Domask, Sarah J. Ewing and Robert J. Priore, all of whom have been selected to showcase their work on the main stage of the annual VelocityDC Dance Festival this October.

Lorraine Spiegler and I are thrilled to announce Anatoli Kucheruk as the newest member of our esteemed faculty. Known for shaping the careers of countless ballet stars, Kucheruk joins the School & Conservatory as its first Ballet Master.

Our DREAM Program has expanded to middle and high-school with the DREAM Alumni Program!! Based out of the African-American Civil War Museum on U Street, students take class, attend professional performances and mentor younger students.

Throughout the year our students will share the stage with our OnStage artists as we continue in our mission to connect our young performers of tomorrow with today’s professionals. Students are energized and excited for performances at Sidney Harman Hall, The John F. Kennedy Center for The Performing Arts, the Music Center at Strathmore, and of course, our own CityDance Studio Theater at Strathmore.

I look forward to seeing you at the theater, in the studio and out in the community!

Warmly,

Alexandra Nowakowski
CityDance, Executive Director

Pictured: Conservatory: Emily Haughton & Bridger Barksdale, OnStage Artist Da’ Von Doane of Dance Theatre of Harlem, DREAM student at THEARC

Photo Credit: Conservatory- Theo Kossenas - Media 4 Artists, OnStage- Rachel Neville, DREAM- Barbara L. Salisbury Photography

The Alumni InitiativeVictoria Warrick was one of the CityDance Marketing/Development Interns this summer. In her blog post she talks about her interning experience and plans for the future! 

This summer I interned with CityDance as part of their social media marketing and development department. The experience was amazing overall, and I feel that I have learned a lot of technical skills that I will utilize in my career in the future. I will be a senior at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. I am currently in the process of finishing my journalism major and completed my dance minor in the fall of my junior year. I was initially involved in the conservatory program at CityDance when I was training in high school. I got involved with the conservatory closer to the end of my high school training. I had been dancing with studios in the Fairfax County area since I was three years old. During my sophomore year of high school I did a production at the Kennedy Center with CityDance alumni Diana Almalfitano. She told me about the program at CityDance and I began doing summer intensives with the conservatory the following summer. It wasn’t until my senior year that I enrolled in their fall program. 

While searching for internships for this summer, I came across a post from the CityDance Facebook page about summer internships. Although I’m a journalism major in college, I became very interested in Public Relations after my internship the previous summer. The position sounded perfect. I have a strong background in dance, therefore, I already felt that I was knowledgeable enough to be able to provide my personal input in my work. I also loved the fact that the internship was in DC because I’ve always wanted to work in a city. Working on the administrative side of the company has been an amazing experience. After switching my major from dance to journalism my freshman year of college, I discovered that I wanted to pursue dance as more as a hobby. I feel that my abilities are far more generated to the administrative side of the company, so I’m fully satisfied with my decision. It was also awesome to return to the studios to take pictures. The facility at Strathmore is gorgeous and the dancers are incredible so this was a perfect place to get material for social media. I even wrote down core strengthening exercises from Rob’s jazz class to use at the gym later…that was a plus. 

I graduate this coming May and hope to move to New York City almost immediately. I would love to get a job for a public relations firm specializing in entertainment and/or fashion PR. Living in the city would be great because I can even take dance classes in my free time to stay and shape and have fun. My experience interning with CityDance will definitely help me in my career. I’ve learned how to use so many programs that will be helpful in my profession such as photoshop, excel, and Wordpress. I also learned how to maintain social media accounts and use them to expand the target demographic of the company. CityDance really has a hard working, close-knit staff so I feel very privileged to be a part of it.

The Alumni Initiative
Victoria Warrick was one of the CityDance Marketing/Development Interns this summer. In her blog post she talks about her interning experience and plans for the future!

This summer I interned with CityDance as part of their social media marketing and development department. The experience was amazing overall, and I feel that I have learned a lot of technical skills that I will utilize in my career in the future. I will be a senior at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. I am currently in the process of finishing my journalism major and completed my dance minor in the fall of my junior year. I was initially involved in the conservatory program at CityDance when I was training in high school. I got involved with the conservatory closer to the end of my high school training. I had been dancing with studios in the Fairfax County area since I was three years old. During my sophomore year of high school I did a production at the Kennedy Center with CityDance alumni Diana Almalfitano. She told me about the program at CityDance and I began doing summer intensives with the conservatory the following summer. It wasn’t until my senior year that I enrolled in their fall program.

While searching for internships for this summer, I came across a post from the CityDance Facebook page about summer internships. Although I’m a journalism major in college, I became very interested in Public Relations after my internship the previous summer. The position sounded perfect. I have a strong background in dance, therefore, I already felt that I was knowledgeable enough to be able to provide my personal input in my work. I also loved the fact that the internship was in DC because I’ve always wanted to work in a city. Working on the administrative side of the company has been an amazing experience. After switching my major from dance to journalism my freshman year of college, I discovered that I wanted to pursue dance as more as a hobby. I feel that my abilities are far more generated to the administrative side of the company, so I’m fully satisfied with my decision. It was also awesome to return to the studios to take pictures. The facility at Strathmore is gorgeous and the dancers are incredible so this was a perfect place to get material for social media. I even wrote down core strengthening exercises from Rob’s jazz class to use at the gym later…that was a plus.

I graduate this coming May and hope to move to New York City almost immediately. I would love to get a job for a public relations firm specializing in entertainment and/or fashion PR. Living in the city would be great because I can even take dance classes in my free time to stay and shape and have fun. My experience interning with CityDance will definitely help me in my career. I’ve learned how to use so many programs that will be helpful in my profession such as photoshop, excel, and Wordpress. I also learned how to maintain social media accounts and use them to expand the target demographic of the company. CityDance really has a hard working, close-knit staff so I feel very privileged to be a part of it.

Alumni Initiative

"One of the things I love about working with CityDance students is their tenacity to tackle challenges while in the studio. As I’m pushing them to expand their knowledge of technique and artistry, it’s amazing to see how they come in every morning to rise to the challenge."

-CityDance School and Conservatory Teaching Faculty, Therese Gahl

"One of the things I love about working with CityDance students is their tenacity to tackle challenges while in the studio. As I’m pushing them to expand their knowledge of technique and artistry, it’s amazing to see how they come in every morning to rise to the challenge."

-CityDance School and Conservatory Teaching Faculty, Therese Gahl

CityDancer Briana Blazek attended the Dance Theatre of Harlem Summer Ballet Intensive in partnership with CityDance and also was one of the winners of our Sites of CityDance Instagram Contest. In our interview she delves into her experience at the DTH intensive and what she plans to do with dance in the future. 

Q: What inspired you to start dancing?

A: I think I’ve always had an attraction towards expression through movement, even before I was introduced to structured genres of dance. I did recreational productions at my church and I would always excitedly participate in the scenes that involved dance. A new choreographer came and thought that I had potential; so, she asked me to train with her. That’s how I got my start. I watched the documentary “First position” and was very motivated to start taking ballet classes specifically. I’ve loved it ever since!

Q: What intrigued you to participate in the DTH Summer Ballet Intensive?

A: I saw it as a great opportunity to work with the DTH faculty without traveling out of the state. My parents didn’t want me to leave home for a summer intensive this year. 

Q: Did you have a favorite or particular experience that made your DTH experience the most memorable?

A: I was having my first class with Andrea Long and an ex-principle dancer from the San Francisco Ballet (a friend of her’s) was watching. I was a bit nervous because I wasn’t used to her more direct teaching style. This caused me to mess up on a combination or two. She came to me, seeing that I was struggling because of my nervousness. She reassured me that she only wanted to help me and told me to relax. This experience taught me to adjust to the different methods that teachers may have. Her friend came to me after class and gave me a precious piece of advice something like this, "Don’t take corrections negatively. Embrace them. Enjoy every moment in class and have fun."

Q: You were one of the contest winners for our summer Sites of CityDance Instagram contest. How did you gain the massive amount of social media support on your pictures?

A: Instagram is a great place where dancers can support each other. I was given shout outs from some of my friends and owners of popular dance accounts.

Q: What do you plan to do with dance in the future?

A: Continuing my studies at CityDance and becoming a professional ballet dancer! I love classical ballet and being challenged by its growing standards. I want to be a part of the integration of racially and culturally diverse dancers into the higher ranks of prestigious ballet companies. To aid in showing that anyone, no matter what they look like or where they come from, can achieve what hasn’t been done before in the ballet world (or in any profession).

Q: What aspects of technique and performance skill do you feel that you can take from this intensive to use in your classes in the fall with CityDance?

A: I learned A LOT during those two weeks. They emphasized fundamental skill sets and helped with the solidification of my technique. More plié and larger movement are some of the many things I try to think about in my day-to-day classes. I enjoyed the experience immensely and loved working with the DTH faculty.

CityDancer Briana Blazek attended the Dance Theatre of Harlem Summer Ballet Intensive in partnership with CityDance and also was one of the winners of our Sites of CityDance Instagram Contest. In our interview she delves into her experience at the DTH intensive and what she plans to do with dance in the future.

Q: What inspired you to start dancing?

A: I think I’ve always had an attraction towards expression through movement, even before I was introduced to structured genres of dance. I did recreational productions at my church and I would always excitedly participate in the scenes that involved dance. A new choreographer came and thought that I had potential; so, she asked me to train with her. That’s how I got my start. I watched the documentary “First position” and was very motivated to start taking ballet classes specifically. I’ve loved it ever since!

Q: What intrigued you to participate in the DTH Summer Ballet Intensive?

A: I saw it as a great opportunity to work with the DTH faculty without traveling out of the state. My parents didn’t want me to leave home for a summer intensive this year.

Q: Did you have a favorite or particular experience that made your DTH experience the most memorable?

A: I was having my first class with Andrea Long and an ex-principle dancer from the San Francisco Ballet (a friend of her’s) was watching. I was a bit nervous because I wasn’t used to her more direct teaching style. This caused me to mess up on a combination or two. She came to me, seeing that I was struggling because of my nervousness. She reassured me that she only wanted to help me and told me to relax. This experience taught me to adjust to the different methods that teachers may have. Her friend came to me after class and gave me a precious piece of advice something like this, "Don’t take corrections negatively. Embrace them. Enjoy every moment in class and have fun."

Q: You were one of the contest winners for our summer Sites of CityDance Instagram contest. How did you gain the massive amount of social media support on your pictures?

A: Instagram is a great place where dancers can support each other. I was given shout outs from some of my friends and owners of popular dance accounts.

Q: What do you plan to do with dance in the future?

A: Continuing my studies at CityDance and becoming a professional ballet dancer! I love classical ballet and being challenged by its growing standards. I want to be a part of the integration of racially and culturally diverse dancers into the higher ranks of prestigious ballet companies. To aid in showing that anyone, no matter what they look like or where they come from, can achieve what hasn’t been done before in the ballet world (or in any profession).

Q: What aspects of technique and performance skill do you feel that you can take from this intensive to use in your classes in the fall with CityDance?

A: I learned A LOT during those two weeks. They emphasized fundamental skill sets and helped with the solidification of my technique. More plié and larger movement are some of the many things I try to think about in my day-to-day classes. I enjoyed the experience immensely and loved working with the DTH faculty.