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Choreographer Christal Brown to teach and perform at Community Folk Art Center

May 07, 2008

Sara Miller
(315) 443-9038

Sara Miller

Christal Brown, artistic director of the New York City-based dance company INSPIRIT, will offer a series of master classes to middle school dancers in the Kuumba Project at the Community Folk Art Center (CFAC), Wednesday through Friday, May 14-16. On Friday, May 16, at 6 p.m., Brown will additionally present an informal lecture/demonstration that will be followed by a reception at CFAC, 805 E. Genesee St., Syracuse. The lecture and reception are free and open to the public. To attend, R.S.V. P. to Imagining America at 443-8590.

The Kuumba Project: An Urban Arts Education Program was designed by the Syracuse University South Side Initiative Office in collaboration with the CFAC as a pre-professional after-school training program for artistically gifted children. Kuumba provides scholarships and is the only program of its kind in the city of Syracuse. Syracuse City School District youth between the ages of 11 and 13 auditioned and were selected in the areas of dance, music, visual art, writing and theater. The objective is for the students to continue in the program until they graduate from high school (provided funding is secured). The Kuumba Project enables them to be prepared to compete for admission to the best conservatories and visual and performing art colleges in the country.

Brown has toured with Chuck Davis' African-American Dance Ensemble and Andrea E. Woods/ Soul Work. She has also performed with and managed the Gesel Mason Performance Project while apprenticing with the Liz Lerman Dance Exchange just outside of Washington, D.C. Upon relocating to New York City, Brown apprenticed with the Bill T. Jones/ Arnie Zane Dance Company before finding a home with Urban Bush Women, where she spent three seasons as a principal performer, community specialist and apprentice program coordinator.

Brown's visit is part of The Hyphenated Artist Series, a collaboration between the Partnership for Arts Education and Imagining America: Artists and Scholars in Public Life. The Hyphenated Artist Series is supported by the Syracuse Campus-Community Entrepreneurship Initiative ( Enitiative), funded by a grant from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, focusing on entrepreneurship in the arts, technology and our neighborhoods. This project is the first phase of a larger initiative to incubate new opportunities in connection with those in the arts and cultural sector.

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