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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Koresh: The artistry and outreach of dance

The+Koresh+Dance+Company+is+known+for+its+performances+as+well+as+its+outreach+dance+programs.
Provided

The Koresh Dance Company is known for its performances as well as its outreach dance programs.

The Academy of Visual and Performing Arts is bringing the Philadelphia-based Koresh Dance Company to Rudder Theatre at 7 p.m. Thursday. The Battalion Life & Arts editor Katie Canales sat down with the company’s artistic director Ronen Koresh to discuss Koresh’s outreach program, touring lifestyle and dance techniques. 

THE BATTALION: You’re stationed in Philadelphia. What does your company do for the community?

KORESH: We have a big, big school in Philadelphia and the center city. We cater to children’s classes from the ages of two and a half, three to the age of 17 and then we also offer classes to people who are adults and also for aspiring professionals and nonprofessionals. And then every day, seven days a week, we do a lot of outreach programs. We go to schools in the area for underprivileged kids and we actually give classes. It’s part of our mission. So I think we deal with four different schools that we go to and we’re hoping eventually to have it part of the curriculum that we will be teaching them on a continuous basis, not just offering classes randomly as opposed to having it. If you’re in a certain grade, the next year you can have the class and continue studying. So it becomes part of what you do in the school since there’s hardly any art and culture in the schools these days.That’s just part of what our mission is. And when we’re on the road we do lectures and demonstrations or masters classes and lectures and performances so we’re really 

really committed to the educational part and the outreach as much of the performance. 

THE BATTALION: What kind of dance styles do you offer in your company?

KORESH: It’s closest to the contemporary modern dance genre, but it’s because there’s not really other ways of describing what it is that we do. Because what we do is really dance, and dance doesn’t have a specific style, not in my opinion. The second you put a style on it you limit what you can do or cannot do. So it ecompasses everything and it’s from folk dance to contemporary to modern dance to jazz to hip hop moves. The moves are the derivative of everything in life, but the style itself is really content driven. So we will use anything to deliver a message we’re trying to deliver. It’s quite accessible, it’s major, it’s very passionate, it’s very physical, very technical, and has all the ingredients for a fantastic, fantastic show.

THE BATTALION: What sets the dance company apart from others?

KORESH: Our ability to connect with audiences. What we do creates a dialogue between the performer and the audiences. It’s something that the audience connects with immediately when they watch what they watch. We do a lot of Q&As, question and answer, after. Besides all the outreach programs that we do, we connect with the community itself. To some degree, some of what we do is not just performance, it’s residency. So we come to an area, we’re there from four days to a week, and we are a part of the community and a part of the fabric of the community and so when we leave, we leave also a memorable experience for everybody. And then coming back is a desirable thing for that community, they feel invested in us. I think us being invested in the community creates a chain reaction that they community is invested in us. And so now there is a relationship and through the relationship you can actually develop a  deeper understanding of what we do and what the means of the viewer are and the community are. And so that’s one of the things that differentiates us, beside the fact that we are — the dancers are technically superb and the choreography is quite visually stimulating.

THE BATTALION: You all do a lot of touring also, you aren’t permanently based in Philadelphia season-round?

KORESH: We’re primarily a touring company. This season alone we’ve been to about 25 different communities in the country as well as outside the country. We were in Belarus not too long ago, we just got back from Seattle and North Carolina. So many different places. We’re going to Florida next week and we’re going to Alabama and Mississippi.

 

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