TU Dance Company Showing – Friday, October 4

In anticipation of TU Dance’s 16th season fall concert at The O’Shaughnessy on October 18-20, 2019, please join Artistic Directors Toni Pierce-Sands and Uri Sands for an informal in-studio showing at TU Dance Center. The showing will feature excerpts from the fall concert program.

The performance program features two company premieres by Artistic Director Uri Sands. Something Amber (2012), originally commissioned by Alonzo King LINES Ballet Training Program, is a full company work inspired by an illustrious string composition by neoclassical composer Vladimir Martynov. Tracks (2018), a full company work set to the legendary sounds of R&B music’s The O’Jays and originally commissioned by Ailey II, references the markings, wounds, and scars that our history leaves on us, pathways created or followed in life, and the regimen of building railroad tracks; manual labor and the arduousness of continuing on despite life’s challenges, in an effort to create better tomorrows. The program also features Ronald K. Brown’s Clear as Tear Water (2005), a solo originally created for Artistic Director Toni Pierce-Sands that explores the balance of a woman’s vulnerability and strength as she is supported by generations of women before her, and a reprisal of Sands’s Salve (2017), originally commissioned by Ballet Memphis and set to the music of Gavin Bryars, a meditative work for eight dancers that illustrates the idea of healing through the simple action of coming together. 

TU Dance’s fall concert is part of The O’Shaughnessy Presents series.

FRIDAY | October 4, 2019

Doors open at 5:00pm. Showing begins at 5:30pm. This event is free and open to the public.

TU Dance Center is located at 2121 University Avenue West, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55114. Find us on the north side of University Avenue, one block east of Vandalia, located directly behind Subway on the building’s east side. Limited parking is available in the lot in front of TU Dance Center. Additional parking is available in the north side lot accessible by taking Vandalia St. and Charles Ave.

Photo by Michael Slobodian ©

Adult Beginning Modern Workshop with Thern Anderson (Midday), Fall 2019

This 6-week workshop with Thern will teach body and spacial awareness, rhythm and phrasing, ensemble dancing and injury prevention through modern dance patterns and improvisation.

Thern Anderson started dancing at the University of Minnesota and has performed with Choreogram Dance Company, Spira, Oregon Dance Consort, and most recently performed as an independent artist with Marciano Silva dos Santos, Offleash Area, Lori Mercil, and Paula Mann. She has taught to all ages and abilities in Washington, DC, Portland, OR and Minneapolis, MN.

Mondays, 12:00-1:30pm

Session 1: September 9 – October 14
Session 2: October 21 – December 2 (no class on November 25)

Cost: $85.00 (pre-registration required)

To register, please complete the registration form and proceed to make an online payment below.

Please select one option below :
Student Name:

Adult Beginning Ballet Workshop with Tina Anderson, Fall 2019

This 6-week ballet technique workshop emphasizes alignment, placement and somatic awareness.  The class consists of barre and center work that focuses on balance, classical line, connecting steps, and simple turns and jumps.

Tina Anderson Wallum’s 23-year performing career included principal and soloist work with Minnesota Dance Theatre, Ballet Minnesota, Ballet Arts Minnesota, Ballet of the Dolls, Savannah Ballet, The Contemporary Ballet Company, and Pennsylvania Ballet. She holds her BS from Radford University in Virginia. She has taught ballet classes for Ballet Arts Minnesota, Ballet Minnesota, Classical Ballet Academy, Chinese Dance Theater and is currently teaching at the University of Minnesota. Her current scholarly research is in Mind-Body Centering and somatics where she is devoted to creating a sense of embodiment in her students.

Tuesdays, 12:00-1:30pm

Session 1: September 3 – October 8
Session 2: October 15 – November 19

Cost: $85.00 (pre-registration required)

To register, please complete the registration form and proceed to make an online payment below.

Sessions (please select one option below) :
Student Name:

Adult Beginning Modern Workshop with Thern Anderson (Evenings), Fall 2019

This 6-week workshop with Thern will teach body and spacial awareness, rhythm and phrasing, ensemble dancing and injury prevention through modern dance patterns and improvisation.

Thern Anderson started dancing at the University of Minnesota and has performed with Choreogram Dance Company, Spira, Oregon Dance Consort, and most recently performed as an independent artist with Marciano Silva dos Santos, Offleash Area, Lori Mercil, and Paula Mann. She has taught to all ages and abilities in Washington, DC, Portland, OR and Minneapolis, MN.

Wednesdays, 6:00-7:30pm

Session 1: September 4 – October 9
Session 2: October 16 – November 20

Cost: $85.00 (pre-registration required)

To register, please complete the registration form and proceed to make an online payment below.

Sessions (please select one option below) :
Student Name:

W(Righting) Your Truth Workshop with Brother(hood) Dance!, August 24 & 25

THIS WORKSHOP HAS BEEN CANCELLED.

W(Righting) Your Truth with Orlando Hunter of Brother(hood) Dance! is a creative writing incubator for dancers and writers (poets, songwriters, and scholars) to investigate ideas in which they may not have had the space to explore or are dreaming about how to actively and effectively use their gifts to write their truth.

We are dancers who write and are interested in the translation of words to bodies, bodies to words. We live in a world where myths and narratives are constantly being created around the body. How do we rewrite and recreate ourselves from quasi-narrative notions of self and wholeness? If words and actions negatively impact our emotional bodies, how can we heal using these same modes to rebuild and secure our inner strength. Write, right, your truth.

August 24 & 25, 3:00-5:30pm

Students should wear clothing that they feel comfortable moving in (no jeans) and bring a notebook and something to write with. This workshop is open to all who can dance and write. 

Cost: $45.00 for the two-day workshop, payable online or at TUDC by cash, check or debit/credit card. Online pre-registration recommended.

Brother(hood) Dance! is an interdisciplinary duo that seeks to inform its audiences on the socio-political and environmental injustices from a global perspective, bringing clarity to the same-gender-loving African-American experience in the 21st century. Brother(hood) Dance! was formed in April 2014 as a duo that research, create and perform dances of freedom by Orlando Zane Hunter, Jr. and Ricarrdo Valentine. We have performed our works at FiveMyles, Center for Performance Research, B.A.A.D! (Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance), VCU-The Grace Street Theater, DraftWork at St. Marks Church, JACK, Movement Research at Judson Church, Colby College, Denmark Arts Center and other venues. As a collective, our work demonstrates how life extends beyond its own subjective limits and often tells a story about the effects of global cultural interaction over the latter half of the twentieth century. It challenges the binaries we continually reconstruct between Self and Other, between our own ‘cannibal’ and ‘civilized’ selves. By rejecting an objective truth and global cultural narratives, we find that movement reveals an inherent awkwardness, a humor that echoes our own vulnerabilities. Brother(hood) Dance! considers movement as a metaphor for the ever-seeking man who experiences a continuous loss. Brother(hood) Dance!’s work urge us to renegotiate performance as being part of a reactive or – at times – autistic medium, commenting on oppressing themes in our contemporary society.

Orlando Hunter is a choreographer who researches, illustrates and creates from an African-American male perspective. In his work he tackles issues resulting from a capitalistic imperialist patriarchal white supremacist system. Hunter grew up dancing hip-hop and graduated with a BFA in Dance from Univ. of Minnesota, where he performed works by Donald Byrd, Bill T. Jones, Carl Flink, Louis Falco, Colleen Thomas, Uri Sands, Stephen Petronio and Nora Chipaumire. His solo “Mutiny” was selected to represent the University of Minnesota at the 2011 ACDFA gala in Madison, Wisconsin. Orlando studied LGBT activism and history in Amsterdam and Berlin. He has performed with Christal Brown/INspirit Dance Company, Contempo Physical Dance, Forces of Nature, Makeda Thomas, Threads Dance Project, TU Dance and Ananya Dance Theater, an all women’s company where he was the first male member and toured with them to Trinidad & Tobago and Zimbabwe. Hunter is a co-founder of the collective Brother(hood) Dance!

Photo by Jaimé Dzandu.

Location & Parking Information: TU Dance Center is located at 2121 University Avenue West, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55114. Find us on the north side of University Avenue, one block east of Vandalia, located directly behind Subway on the building’s east side. Limited parking is available in the lot in front of TU Dance Center. Additional parking is available in the north side lot accessible by taking Vandalia and Charles.

Dancing Your Story Workshop, September 9-November 4

Join teaching artists Thern Anderson & Mary Moore Easter in an 8-week dance and writing workshop with curriculum designed for adults ages 55+ at Rondo Community Library. Participants will explore creative exercises in which the two art forms are inextricably linked and expand their range of physical expression through improvisational activities and choreography. Movement will be used as a prompt for writing a variety of texts. Classes are accompanied by live music. There will be a culminating event on the last day of the workshop.

Participants of all levels and abilities are welcome. No previous experience is necessary. Limited spaces available. This workshop is free.

September 9-November 4 | Mondays, 2:30-4:00pm (No class on October 14-library closed.)
Rondo Community Library, 461 Dale St N, St Paul, MN 55103 (Multipurpose Room)

Sample class: Monday, August 19, 4:00-5:30pm at Kings Crossing, 500 Dale St N, St Paul, MN 55103

Please contact Kaitin Kelly Benedict at TU Dance at kaitin.kbenedict@tudance.org or (651) 505-3264 with questions and to register.

Teaching artist bios:

Thern Anderson is a dance educator with a wealth of experience teaching children, adults, professional dancers and community groups. Thern brings somatic movement principles and improvisational skills to her teaching of modern dance techniques. In teaching dance to beginning adults, her philosophy is that anyone can dance and find pleasure in movement. Classes include the study of body and spatial awareness, rhythm and phrasing, ensemble dancing, and injury prevention. Students learn through modern dance phrases as well as improvisational structures.

Mary Moore Easter’s first poetry collection, The Body of the World, was published by MadHat Press in 2018. The manuscript was a finalist for the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in 2017.  A Pushcart Prize-nominated poet and Cave Canem Fellow, Easter is published in POETRY, The New York Times, Seattle Review, Water Stone, Calyx, Pluck!, Persimmon Tree, Fjord’s Review, The Little Patuxent Review and the 2015 anthology Blues Vision: African American Writing from Minnesota. She holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence and an M.A. from Goddard. Born in Petersburg, Virginia to parents on the faculty of then-segregated Virginia State College, she was as immersed in their artistic and intellectual interests as she was in limitations segregation imposed on her black world. She re-rooted as faculty at Minnesota’s Carleton College where she was founder and director of the Dance Program.

This activity is supported by a Seeding Vitality Arts MN grant from Aroha Philanthropies.

TU Dance Center Open House & Summer Intensive Showcase, August 17

On Saturday, August 17, please join us for an Open House from 10:00am-1:00pm and Advanced Pre-Professional Summer Intensive Showcase from 2:00-3:15pm at TU Dance Center. 

Students who are interested in enrolling in fall classes at TU Dance Center will have the opportunity to take sample classes, tour the facilities, ask questions about our programs and register! 

Sample Class Schedule 

  • Open Children’s Sample Class, 10:00-10:30am
  • Open Teen/Adult Sample Class, 10:30-11:15am
  • Open Boys Sample Class, 11:15am-12:00pm

Following the Open House, please join us for the Summer Intensive Showcase featuring Advanced Pre-Professional Summer Intensive students sharing new works created by Artistic Director Uri Sands and visiting guest artists Maurya Kerr and Marcus Jarrell Willis. 

Saturday, August 17
Open House, 10:00am-1:00pm
Showcase, 2:00-3:15pm
TU Dance Center
2121 University Ave. W., St. Paul MN, 55114

TU Dance Center is located at 2121 University Avenue West, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55114. Find us on the north side of University Avenue, one block east of Vandalia, located directly behind Subway on the building’s east side. Limited parking is available in the lot in front of TU Dance Center. Additional parking is available in the north side lot accessible by taking Vandalia and Charles.

Photo by Laura Scher.

Guest Artist bios

Marcus Jarrell Willis has performed with RIOULT, Dominic Walsh Dance Theater, Tania Pérez-Salas Compañía de Danza and was a member of Ailey II. Willis performed with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater from 2008-2016 traveling around the world performing, teaching numerous masterclasses and participating through Outreach in various communities both locally and abroad. He has been a resident teacher for the KCFAA Paseo Project and was a member of the KCFAA Ailey Trio, leading lecture demonstrations in schools around the Kansas City, Missouri and Kansas City, Kansas area. Willis is a returning teacher at Centre Chorégraphique James Carles Stage International de Danse in Toulouse, France. Willis has presented his choreographic work in the 2009 TDDC Contemporary Dance Festival in NYC, The Ailey Dancer’s Resource Fund performances, The Dance Gallery Festival, The Moving Beauty Series and Gdánsk Festival Tańca in Poland. Commissions include works created for Ailey II, TU Dance, Company Danzante, The Juilliard School, The Ailey School, University of Minnesota, Lucia Marthas Institute for the Performing Arts in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Satellite Collective, The Dance Gallery Festival Level Up Commission in 2013 and The 92nd Y Dance Introduction Series, among others. Willis is the Founder of MJ Willis Project-Inc, which made its debut in Wales in 2017, premiering “My Brother, Dear Sister”. He was named Best Choreographer for TU Dance creation “Sensible Existence” in City Pages 2018-Best of the Twin Cities. Currently, he is the 2018/19 Leverhulme Choreography Fellow at Rambert Dance in London.

Maurya Kerr is a choreographer, educator, performer, and the artistic director of tinypistol, where her choreographic work has been honored by numerous awards, grants, and commissions. She was an ODC artist-in-residence from 2015 to 2018, and completed her MFA through Hollins University in 2016, writing her thesis on people of color and their access to, or prohibition from, wonderment. She was a member of Alonzo King LINES Ballet for twelve years, and most recently performed in The Foundry’s Deep South, and BodyCartography Project’s felt room at SFMOMA and the University of Minnesota’s Weisman Museum. In 2017 she co-founded the tiny little get down, a quarterly dance party intended to defiantly and subversively fortify otherness through embodied joy and the power of the collective. 

Master Classes with Maurya Kerr and Marcus Jarrell Willis, August 10

Join visiting guest artist Maurya Kerr for diving into being, a class that offers an improvisatory landscape of generative play and imaginative rigor. Participants will shape-shift and risk-take; challenge self-conceived limits of generosity and curiosity; fortify creative, investigative, and physical stamina; plummet into joy, failure, and the exquisite messiness of having a body; and dare to care deeply. This class is for an Advanced/Professional Level. Saturday, August 10 | 10:00-11:30am

Join visiting guest artist Marcus Jarrell Willis for a Modern/Contemporary class at TU Dance Center. The class is a blend of familiar Horton-based technique exercises with other modern release forms during the warm-up portion. The remainder of the class is an exploration of the continuous development of Willis’s own signature language through gestural and contemporary forms of Modern Dance movement. This class is for an Advanced/Professional Level. Saturday, August 10 | 12:00-1:30pm

Cost*: $20 per class or $30 for both classes, payable online or at TUDC by cash, check or debit/credit card. Online pre-registration recommended. 

*There is a special rate for those students currently enrolled in the Advanced Pre-Professional Summer Intensive. Please contact Administrative Associate Maxine Yamazaki at maxine.yamazaki@tudance.org for information.

Please select one option below :
Student Name::

 

Maurya Kerr is a choreographer, educator, performer, and the artistic director of tinypistol, where her choreographic work has been honored by numerous awards, grants, and commissions. She was an ODC artist-in-residence from 2015 to 2018, and completed her MFA through Hollins University in 2016, writing her thesis on people of color and their access to, or prohibition from, wonderment. She was a member of Alonzo King LINES Ballet for twelve years, and most recently performed in The Foundry’s Deep South, and BodyCartography Project’s felt room at SFMOMA and the University of Minnesota’s Weisman Museum. In 2017 she co-founded the tiny little get down, a quarterly dance party intended to defiantly and subversively fortify otherness through embodied joy and the power of the collective. Photo credit: Andrew Weeks

Marcus Jarrell Willis has performed with RIOULT, Dominic Walsh Dance Theater, Tania Pérez-Salas Compañía de Danza and was a member of Ailey II. Willis performed with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater from 2008-2016 traveling around the world performing, teaching numerous masterclasses and participating through Outreach in various communities both locally and abroad. He has been a resident teacher for the KCFAA Paseo Project and was a member of the KCFAA Ailey Trio, leading lecture demonstrations in schools around the Kansas City, Missouri and Kansas City, Kansas area. Willis is a returning teacher at Centre Chorégraphique James Carles Stage International de Danse in Toulouse, France. Willis has presented his choreographic work in the 2009 TDDC Contemporary Dance Festival in NYC, The Ailey Dancer’s Resource Fund performances, The Dance Gallery Festival, The Moving Beauty Series and Gdánsk Festival Tańca in Poland. Commissions include works created for Ailey II, TU Dance, Company Danzante, The Juilliard School, The Ailey School, University of Minnesota, Lucia Marthas Institute for the Performing Arts in Amsterdam, Netherlands, Satellite Collective, The Dance Gallery Festival Level Up Commission in 2013 and The 92nd Y Dance Introduction Series, among others. Willis is the Founder of MJ Willis Project-Inc, which made its debut in Wales in 2017, premiering “My Brother, Dear Sister”. He was named Best Choreographer for TU Dance creation “Sensible Existence” in City Pages 2018-Best of the Twin Cities. Currently, he is the 2018/19 Leverhulme Choreography Fellow at Rambert Dance in London. Photo credit: Stéphane Chouan

Classes will be held at TU Dance Center, located at 2121 University Avenue West, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55114. Find us on the north side of University Avenue, one block east of Vandalia, located directly behind Subway on the building’s east side. Limited parking is available in the lot in front of TU Dance Center. Additional parking is available in the north side lot accessible by taking Vandalia Street and Charles Avenue.

Dancing Your Story Workshop, July 8-August 26

Join teaching artists Thern Anderson & Mary Moore Easter in a dance and writing workshop with curriculum designed for adults ages 55+. Participants will explore creative exercises in which the two art forms are inextricably linked and expand their range of physical expression through improvisational activities and practicing set choreography. Movement will be used as a prompt for writing a variety of texts. Classes are accompanied by live music. There will be a culminating event on the last day of class.

Participants of all levels and abilities are welcome. No previous experience is necessary. Limited spaces available. This workshop is free.

July 8-August 26 | Mondays, 1:00-2:30pm 

Abiitan Mill City, 428 S 2nd St., Minneapolis, MN 55401

Please contact TU Dance Education & Outreach Coordinator Kaitin Kelly Benedict at kaitin.kbenedict@tudance.org or (651) 505-3264 with questions and to register.

Teaching Artist bios:

Thern Anderson is a dance educator with a wealth of experience teaching children, adults, professional dancers and community groups. Thern brings somatic movement principles and improvisational skills to her teaching of modern dance techniques. In teaching dance to beginning adults, her philosophy is that anyone can dance and find pleasure in movement. Classes include the study of body and spatial awareness, rhythm and phrasing, ensemble dancing, and injury prevention. Students learn through modern dance phrases as well as improvisational structures.

Mary Moore Easter’s first poetry collection, The Body of the World, was published by MadHat Press in 2018. The manuscript was a finalist for the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in 2017.  A Pushcart Prize-nominated poet and Cave Canem Fellow, Easter is published in POETRY, The New York Times, Seattle Review, Water Stone, Calyx, Pluck!, Persimmon Tree, Fjord’s Review, The Little Patuxent Review and the 2015 anthology Blues Vision: African American Writing from Minnesota. She holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence and an M.A. from Goddard. Born in Petersburg, Virginia to parents on the faculty of then-segregated Virginia State College, she was as immersed in their artistic and intellectual interests as she was in limitations segregation imposed on her black world. She re-rooted as faculty at Minnesota’s Carleton College where she was founder and director of the Dance Program.

This activity is supported by a Seeding Vitality Arts MN grant from Aroha Philanthropies.

TU Dance Center 2019 Student Showcase, June 7 & 8

Artistic Directors Toni Pierce-Sands and Uri Sands and School Director Laurel Keen invite you to The School at TU Dance Center 2019 Spring Student Showcase. Students from the Children & Teen and Pre-Professional divisions will perform in works by TU Dance Center teaching artists and TU Dance company members. This year, we are also extremely honored to have our advanced pre-professional students performing a work by choreographer Ronald K. Brown entitled Four Corners, which was originally commissioned for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 2013. Please join us in celebrating these inspiring young dancers and all of their hard work!

Whiting Proscenium Stage
Rarig Center, University of Minnesota
330 21st. Avenue S.
Minneapolis, MN

Friday, June 7 – 7:00pm

Saturday, June 8 – 2:00pm & 7:00pm

Available for online purchase until 2 hours prior to the start of the performance. Ticket purchase will be available at the door. Exact cash or check preferred!

Tickets: $15 (General Admission)
Parking and Directions to Rarig Center

For questions, please contact Maxine Yamazaki at maxine.yamazaki@tudance.org or 612-605-1925.

Photo by Graham Tolbert.

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