[Katherine Laidlaw, one of Oregon’s first professional dance instructors, in the Oregon, forest. 1920s. Image provide by Carol Shults]

In 2011, Oregon Senator Bonamicci successfully introduced a bill to the Oregon State Legislature declaring the last week of April “Oregon Dance Week.” The week will feature free dance classes, studio rehearsals and an Oregon Choreographer’s Showcase, as well as a lecture on the history of dance in Oregon from esteemed dance historian Carol Shults and Oregonian dance critic Martha Ullman West. We cordially invite you to join us for one of the following Dance Week events:

[Pictured left to right in The Nutcracker (1934) Standing: Norma Nielsen, Willam Christensen, Geraldine Brown, Jacques Gershkovitch (conductor), Hinemoa Cloninger, Betty Dodson Kneeling: Janet Reed (Sugar Plum Fairy), Natalie Lauterstein (Marie) Photo reproduction – Blaine Covert ]
Dancin’ in The Rain: The history of Dance in Oregon

Date and Time: Monday, April 23rd, 6:00 to 7:15 pm
Place: Rotunda, Atoinette Hatfield Hall (aka ground floor of the Newmark), 1111 SW Broadway at Main

The event is free and does not require a ticket or a reservation.

Presented by Carol Shults, company teacher and historian at Oregon Ballet Theatre in the ’90s, and Martha Ullman West, dance historian and critic. Beginning around 1900 ballet began to have a place in the cultural scene in Portland. Shults and West will delineate some of the developments of the last hundred years.

[Portland Ballet Playbill featuring Heidi Schumacher, a former dancer with Portland Ballet and Ballet Oregon who later became a professor at the University of Oregon. Image from the 1970s. Photo provided by Carol Shults]

Oregon Choreographer’s Showcase
Date and Time: Friday, April 27th, 4:00 pm
Place: Newmark Theatre, Antoinette Hatfield Hall, 1111 SW Broadway at Main

This event is free and does not require a ticket or reservation.

Sample the work of a diverse group of Oregon contemporary dance choreographers at this free, happy hour showcase of brief works from companies including:Polaris, Natya Leela, TopShakeDance, Rainbow Dance, Agnieszka Laska Dancers, and BodyVox.

[BodyVox, one of the Oregon dance companies presented during the Oregon Choreographer’s showcase.]

Try It! Free Classes and Rehearsals All Over Portland
Date and Time: Various
Place: Various

Check out the Oregon Dance Week website for a complete list of free to the public classes, demonstrations and open rehearsals and get out there and participate in Oregon Dance!

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