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Springfield Dance Alliance's 2016 Fundraiser, "Springfield Dance Artists"

(Poster design courtesy Springfield Dance Alliance)

Springfield Dance Alliance, a non-profit organization founded in 2012, is a collective of movement artists in the Springfield area dedicated to creating a dynamic dance community, with performance and education opportunities for dancers and open a dialog exploring the role of dance in everyday life. 

“When we started out,” says Carla Williams, “Springfield Dance Alliance was just myself, Teresa Simpson and Kari Allen. And we pooled a little bit of money together, rented a theater space, and from there we've grown into this organization that has 50 members, five organization/studio members. And we’re really striving to serve our community as best we can.”   

Audience members will experience the expansion of boundaries between the performers and themselves as Springfield Dance Alliance takes the stage for its second annual Springfield Dance Artists fundraising performance at the Old Glass Place, 521 E. St. Louis Street, on Friday August, 26th. 

Springfield Dance Alliance provides an outlet for professional choreographers and dancers in the area to spread their wings and experiment with different dance forms and presentations, but the company is open to anyone interested in dance, says Carla Williams. “Yeah, particularly for our fall Dance Concert, we do an open casting call that’s open to anybody who wants (to audition).  And that’s going to be September 11th (at the Creamery Arts Center), and our performance for that will be November 18-20 in the Balcony Theatre on the MSU campus.” The August 26 Dance Artists performance and fundraiser, says Carla Williams, is “more of an invitational performance, where we invite choreographers and dancers to participate.” 

For the August 26th concert, dance styles on display will include contemporary ballet, various modern selections and high energy belly dance, as well as live music and interactive experiences. One of the modern-dance pieces, says Carla, is “inspired by amphibians—one of our dancers also works for Dickerson Park Zoo, and she always creates the coolest, most interesting dances.” There will also be a piece performed in collaboration with visual artist Brandon Crone. “He’s drawing in charcoal, and the dancer has charcoal on her hands. And as she’s marking her body with her hands he is marking the page, and they’re sort of reacting (to each other’s movements).  And at the end of the night his (charcoal sketch) is going to be raffled off to help us support our season.”  There will be live music by Bella Donna, and Anne Marie Daehn and Peter Collins from the MSU Music faculty will provide music for fellow MSU professor Ruth Barnes’s piece.

The performances on the main stage will start about 7:15pm, and after five dance pieces there will be a silent auction of goods and services from local businesses such as the Urban Cup, Civil Kitchen and Tap, SCT, MSU Theatre and Dance, Springfield Hot Glass, Bambinos, and Five Pound Apparel, along with spa treatments, pet sitting and more.  Food and soft drinks will be part of the ticket price, from Tea Bar & Bites, Nonna’s, The Traveling Chef and As You Like It.  The Old Glass Place will provide a cash bar.

Proceeds from the silent auction and the charcoal-drawing raffle will help support the company’s 2016-17 season, says Carla Williams—“from purchasing costumes to paying technical theater people for lights, to buying things like Marley tape (for securing portable dance floors to other floor surfaces).  And then programs, those sorts of things.”  In addition to performances in Springfield’s mainstage theaters, Springfield Dance Alliance is dedicated to offering affordable dance classes and workshops in a variety of styles for all levels of training.

Tickets for Springfield Dance Artists are $25, or five tickets for $100.  They’re available at http://www.springfielddancealliance or at the door on August 26. For information call 894-3559.

Randy Stewart joined the full-time KSMU staff in June 1978 after working part-time as a student announcer/producer for two years. His job has evolved from Music Director in the early days to encompassing production of a wide range of arts-related programming and features for KSMU, including the online and Friday morning "Arts News." Stewart assists volunteer producers John Darkhorse (Route 66 Blues Express), Lee Worman (The Gold Ring), and Emily Higgins (The Mulberry Tree) with the production of their programs. He's also become the de facto "Voice of KSMU" in recent years due to the many hours per day he’s heard doing local station breaks. Stewart’s record of service on behalf of the Springfield arts community earned him the Springfield Regional Arts Council's "Ozzie Award" in 2006.