Wright State hosting national dance and choreography festival in Creative Arts Center

The Wright State Dance Program is hosting dozens of emerging choreographers and dancers from around the country during the 61st National Choreography Intensive July 17–27. (Photo by Gary Taylor Photography)

The Wright State University Dance Program will host dozens of emerging choreographers and dancers from around the country during a unique 10-day day festival.

Organized by the Regional Dance America, the 61st National Choreography Intensive will take place in Wright State’s Creative Arts Center from July 17–27.

During the National Choreography Intensive, choreographers take classes on the concepts and craft of choreography and set new work with dancers each day. The dancers take daily dance technique classes followed by rehearsals and then performances of new works.

The festival will culminate in a Final Showcase of choreography and dance Tuesday, July 26, at 3 p.m. in the Festival Playhouse in the Creative Arts Center.

The showcase is open to the public. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased by emailing rda.nci.info@gmail.com or at the door.

About 50 to 70 high school, college and post-college dancers and choreographers will participate in the festival. Many of the participants were awarded scholarships at their regional festivals to attend the festival, and a number of the choreographers are working professionals.

Masterclasses are taught by a group of nationally recognized professionals in the fields of dance and music.

The festival’s faculty includes several Wright State dance faculty members: Gina Walther, associate professor and head of dance, who will teach modern dance; Greg Robinson, instructor in dance, who will teach ballet; and Ashley Walton Pabst, instructor in dance, who will teach contemporary dance.

Elizabeth Ramsey, who graduated from Wright State with a B.F.A. in Dance, will teach a modern dance masterclass.

This is the first time Wright State’s Dance Program will host the National Choreography Intensive (NCI).

Walther, who has taught at past NCI intensives in Utah and Pennsylvania, said the Dance Program is excited to welcome the dancers and choreographers to Wright State and the Dayton community.

“Regional Dance America trains and produces some of the best dancers in America,” she said. “This is a fantastic opportunity for the Wright State Dance Program to demonstrate the skills of our faculty and the beauty of our state-of-the-art facilities. I’m thrilled NCI has chosen Wright State University for this year’s choreographic festival.”

In addition, Wright State dance majors Ava Howe and Elizabeth Sabol are participating in the festival as interns.

Sabol, who is a junior, was a member of Regional Dance America while growing up and is excited to experience the National Choreography Intensive after hearing about it for so many years.

As an intern, she is responsible for caring for the resident dancers and choreographers and making them feel at home during their 10 days at Wright State.

“I can’t wait to meet new people and work with incredible master teachers,” Sabol said.

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