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ISU dance students and faculty shine at American College Dance Association Northwest Conference

April 27, 2017

POCATELLO – Ten students and faculty from Idaho State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance attended the American College Dance Association (ACDA) Northwest Conference in Eugene, Ore., the week of March 28-April 2.

 More than 450 students and faculty members from 20 different colleges and universities in the northwest region attended the conference designed to “support and affirm dance in higher education by honoring multiple approaches to scholarly and creative research while fostering and promoting excellence in choreography and/or performance through the adjudication process.”

Three original dance works represented ISU at the conference including ISU dance professor Aaron Wood’s “The Genius of the Crowd,” undergraduate dance major Ashley Rivera’s “The Gift” and lecturer Lauralee Zimmerly’s “This is Who I Was.” Wood and Rivera’s works were performed in the adjudicated concert and Zimmerly’s work was performed in the informal concert. Dance student Gage Horne presented two screendance works as part of the conference screendance component.

The adjudication panel for this conference was comprised of renowned dance artists including Ananya Chatterjea, a leading voice in contemporary Indian dance; Holly Johnston, artistic director of “Ledges and Bones”; James Sutton, who for 14 years was an associate arts professor in dance at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and is currently ballet master for New York Theatre Ballet.

Wood’s work, “The Genius of the Crowd” was performed by ISU undergraduates Ashley Rivera, Sharleen Van Patten, Amanda Stubblefield, Izzy Talbert, Lyllandra Doelitzsch and Kylee Guidry. The adjudicators commented on the “beautiful movement quality of the trio and the soloist” and their appreciation for the performers’ commitment to the work. They also said it was “very clear something meaningful is happening.”

Van Patten and Rivera performed Rivera’s work titled “The Gift.” Adjudicators praised the dancers’ performance by stating “the performers were lovely and very brave and generous” and “completely invested.” Both Rivera and Van Patten were recognized by the adjudicators as outstanding performers while Rivera received honorable mention for her choreography.

Lauralee Zimmerly and adjunct professors Sheena Phelps and Molly Jorgenson presented master classes in topics from partner stretch, to yoga, to theatrical hip-hop. Wood presented master classes in Michio Ito technique and lyrical athleticism.