NSU to host regional dance conference April 4-7


Northwestern State University will host the annual American College Dance Association South Regional Conference April 4-7. More than 350 students from 21 colleges and universities and more than 40 faculty will be attending, according to NSU Assistant Professor of Dance Brett Alan Garfinkel, who is coordinating the conference with Associate Professor of Dance and Director of Dance Kirstin Riehl.

The ACDA Regional Conference will include five dance concerts which will be open to the public along with dance classes, research presentations, a Gala performance and other events. Concerts will be April 4 at 8 p.m., April 5 at 1:45 p.m. and 8 p.m., April 6 at 1 p.m. and April 7 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 and will be sold at the door. The two top dances and two alternatives will be selected for performance at the 2018 National College Dance Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. on June 6-9.

A work by NSU student Katherine Langlois of Greenwell Springs will be among the works performed. During an informal concert, a piece by NSU student Vilma Castro of San Pedro Sula, Honduras, will be presented.

“We are looking for dancers to push themselves past their own boundaries, technically, creatively and artistically,” said Garfinkel. “We are creating an open and safe environment for students to explore and learn new things in the field of dance.”

NSU has commissioned a guest choreographer, Leslie Scott, artistic director of BODYART Dance Company to create an original work performed specifically for the conference.

The American College Dance Association’s primary focus is to support and promote the wealth of talent and creativity that is prominent throughout college and university dance departments. ACDA’s sponsorship of regional conferences and the national dance festival provides the venue for students and faculty to engage in three days of performances, workshops, panels and master classes taught by instructors from around the region and country. The conferences also provide the unique opportunity for students and faculty to have their dance works adjudicated by a panel of nationally recognized dance professionals in an open and constructive forum. The conferences are the primary means for college and university dance programs to perform outside their own academic setting and be exposed to the diversity of the national college dance world. Many conferences culminate with the presentation of pieces selected for their exemplary artistic quality.

Colleges and universities attending the conference are Alabama State University, Auburn University, Belhaven University, DeSales University, Fullerton College, Henderson State University, Hendrix College, Houston Community College, LSU, Northern Kentucky University, Sewanee: The University of the South, Southeastern Louisiana University, Tulane University, the University of Alabama, University of Arkansas-Little Rock, the University of Idaho, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, University of Louisiana at Monroe, University of Memphis, the University of Mississippi and the University of Southern Mississippi.

The conference will use the A.A. Fredericks Auditorium, Magale Recital Hall, the Randall J. Webb, Wellness, Recreation and Activity Center gym and group fitness room, the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts dance studio and Treen Auditorium and the Health and Human Performance Building.

Adjudicators will be Leda Meredith, Steve Rooks and Kista Tucker. Guest artists are Eric Rivera and Tony Smith. NSU faculty Robert Richoux is the technical director and Karn Richoux is production manager.

For more information on the conference, go to regonline.com/south18.

Co-sponsors of the event are the Natchitoches Historic Development Commission and BOM. Other sponsors are the First United Methodist Church of Natchitoches, the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts, Maglieaux’s, The Samuel Guy House, Dickey’s Barbecue Pit, Chili’s, Merci Beaucoup, Super1 Foods, Walmart, Johnny’s Pizza House and Vigor Branding.