student standing in dance uniform

Brenau Dance celebrates vibrant fall semester

Dec 7, 2021
Brenau Staff

By Madia Cooper-Ashirifi

The Brenau University Department of Dance transitioned back into the rigors of a daily groove this fall with widely attended in-person performances, robust rehearsals and classes, guest artists, and community outreach. The department also welcomed 16 first-year students from all over the eastern U.S. 

The department was invited for a great opportunity in October to perform at the 60th celebration of the Gainesville Newcomers Club. In return, the club generously donated to assist students with the cost of attending the American College Dance Association Conference at Florida State University. In the past, only one student has been able to attend the ACDA event. This year, 30 Brenau students will attend.

During the semester, the department hosted choreographer and performer Du’Bois A’Keen to choreograph and lead master classes and lectures. A’Keen performed internationally with Urban Bush Women and is currently an adjunct professor at the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. His work, TRUTH BE TOLD, was performed at the department’s evening of dance concert, Liminality, Nov. 4-6, at Pearce Auditorium. 

Students striking a dance pose

With the public in attendance, the Liminality student choreography concert showcased works in several styles including tap, ballet and contemporary. The student choreographers were registered for the course Composition II taught by Dance Department Chair Dr. Madia Cooper-Ashirifi. Choreographers were adjudicated by dance professionals, which provided opportunities for them to read feedback from an objective perspective. 

With recruiting events also returning, the department is excited to host Days of Dance on Jan. 29-30. Registration is now open for this event, which features two days of workshop classes in dance technique, partnering, dance/movement therapy, choreography, West African Dance, dance as a business and the anatomy of dance. Days of Dance is also an opportunity for various dance programs to perform alongside our dancers on stage in a formal showing at Brenau’s Burd Center for Performing Arts as well as a chance for high school-aged dancers to experience what it is like to be a dancer in Brenau’s program. During this event, seniors and transfer students will also have the opportunity to audition for entry in fall 2022. 

This event is open to individuals as well as schools and companies. We invite studios, schools and individuals to submit work for the Saturday evening showcase on Jan. 29. If you are interested in performing with us that evening, please send an email with your interest to danceinfo@brenau.edu. Looking ahead, the department will also hold Brenau Summer Dance Intensive auditions. Registration for that will be opening soon. For additional information please see our website or contact danceinfo@brenau.edu or 770-538-4764.