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Michelle Dorrance’s Latest News

Michelle Dorrance Michelle Dorrance. Photo by Matthew Murphy and Kenn Tam.

By Deborah Searle of Dance Informa

What are you working on right now?

“Last year I received a Choreographic Fellowship from the Princess Grace Awards to set a new work on Chicago Human Rhythm Project’s BAM. I was given a grant to work with their company and a few other local Chicago-based dancers, including Starinah (Star) Dixon who is one of my favorite soloists and an incredible improvisational dancer.

I just finished the piece a few weeks ago. I’m really excited about it. They’re premiering it this month.”

What are you currently working on with your company Dorrance Dance / New York?

“We have a big show to premiere at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival this July 24-28. We will present a new show in collaboration with musician/composer Toshi Reagon. She comes from a great tradition of spiritual music and blues-based music. She has an unbelievable voice and is an incredible singer/song writer. I’m really honoured to be collaborating with her on this project.”

“I’m also collaborating with Derick Grant and Domeshia Sumbry-Edwards. It’s a unique project for Dorrance Dance because it will be with artists who inspire me and that I look up to. This project is really exciting.”

What else will you be performing in or choreographing this year?

“We just finished editing my long-overdue instructional DVD and it is now for sale.”

“I just finished teaching and performing at the DC Tap Fest and the Stockholm Tap Festival - both incredible festivals! Stockholm is culturally out of control and I love it! There are multiple events every night including an all-styles battle with tap dancers, lindy hoppers and breakers dancing until four in the morning!”

“I’m currently trying to give myself a full month with Derick Grant, Domeshia Sumbry-Edwards and Toshi Reagon to work on the new project before I start leaving town again.”

“I’m going to be a part of Rasta Thomas’ gala in Washington DC. I’m really looking forward to that. I’m going to Jacob’s Pillow to be a part of their gala, which I’m really excited about. Then I go to North Carolina Tap Festival, which is my hometown tap festival. I’m performing and teaching at it.”

“I will also be at New York Tap Festival and the Prague City Tap Festival. I’ll be going to Croatia to the Dubrovnik Tap Festival for the first time. So I’m looking forward to those opportunities.”

Where can people take your tap classes?

“At the many festivals I’ve mentioned, as well as at Broadway Dance Center. Anytime I’m in town, and I don’t have a performance, I teach at Broadway Dance Center on Monday, Wednesday and Sunday. I teach a range from advanced beginner all the way to advanced.”

“I would love to teach a beginner or basic class because I have a lot of dance friends that want to get into tap. I’m looking into starting a slow class for those dancers because I’m so inspired by them. I take my friends’ beginner hip-hop classes, so I want to be able to help create the full circle for the exchange.”

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