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Robin Harris to be Honored with State’s Leading Dance Award

Raleigh, N.C. October 26, 2014 – The North Carolina Dance Alliance (NCDA), the state’s leading membership group serving and supporting the development of dance in North Carolina, will present the 2014 NCDA Community Event on November 22, 2014, at the Durham School of the Arts. This year’s Community Event is a simplified, semi-annual event that features three unique master classes in classic and cutting-edge dance forms, all-day contact improv classes with a contact jam, and a NCDA community membership meeting with free lunch for event attendees. To close the day, an adjudicated Showing will feature dance works by North Carolina artists. For more Information, visit

Keynote events during the Community Event membership luncheon include the presentation of the NCDA Annual Award and an information session on how to find arts resources and funds. The 2014 Annual Award will be presented to Robin Harris, director of the NC State Dance Program at NC State University. Featured speaker Andrea Lawson, Music, Dance & Community Engagement Director for the N.C. Arts Council, will share insights on the state of arts funding and resources in North Carolina.

“The NCDA is thrilled to be back at the Durham School of the Arts to present a re-envisioned Community Event,” said Justin Tornow, NCDA board president. “We live in an ever-evolving society, and changing times made us realize that we, too, needed to be nimble and open to new opportunities for outreach. This year’s Community Event in the Triangle is the first of many new, fantastic opportunities for the NC dance community to come together, share their work, and just get moving,” added Tornow. The NCDA has played a leading role in the North Carolina dance community for over 40 years by providing programs and services for professional dance companies, artists, students and educators.

The 2014 Community Event classes include:

  • CONTACT IMPROV INTENSIVE with Michael Hurd (Asheville), Toni Craige (Raleigh), and Adam Dipert (Carrboro/Raleigh) – A FUN introduction to the dance/sport/martial art/awareness practice of contact improv, covering basic skills, things to pay attention to, how to play safely, develop clear boundaries and practice being aware of our bodies in relation to others. Also, some frank and open (and sometimes funny) discussion of how to navigate the occasional awkwardness of physical contact.
  • MOVING FROM WITHIN with Trish Casey (Winston-Salem) – Moving from the inside out, from the ground up, discovering the usefulness of imagery in relation to movement can be so rewarding. Working with alignment and connecting the body’s extremities to the core of the body, movement becomes more efficient, more articulate, more expressive, and takes on greater freedom. Class encourages inquiry, deep attention, a sense of humor and an open mind as movement material is explored and developed.
  • BALLET FOR EVERYONE with Jacqueline White (Charlotte) – With over 20 years of teaching experience, Jacqueline White has devised a teaching style that welcomes all technical levels and abilities while challenging individuals to think scientifically about the way we move. She is an ABT® Certified Teacher to Level 5 and continues to learn and to be inspired as an educator at various workshops and master classes throughout the country.
  • GAGA/SHAGA with ShaLeigh Comerford (Elon) – This class is a repertoire and technique movement laboratory inspired by the Gaga movement philosophy of Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin. We will begin with an hour Shaga class as we learn to approach movement as a dynamic, healing, and ever-changing power, using evocative ideas and imagery in a safe, non-judgmental environment. Class begins slowly and builds in intensity to continuous motion, providing enjoyable exercise for both body and soul.

The NCDA Annual Award, one of the state’s prestigious dance awards, will be presented to Robin Harris at the NCDA Community Event event. The NCDA Annual Award honors an individual who has made significant lifetime contributions to the growth and development of dance in North Carolina. Recipients of the Annual Award receive a $500.00 honorarium to be used toward their work, or to designate as a one-time scholarship in their name.

Robin Harris is the director of the NC State Dance Program at NC StateUniversity, where she also serves as artistic director of the NCSU Dance Company, Robin Harris mentors student choreographers and teaches dance composition. A choreographer of over thirty major works, Robin Harris is a recipient of two NC Arts Council Choreographers Fellowships, the Raleigh Medal of Arts, an Indy Award, and the 2010 NCAAHPERD University Dance Educator Award. Her work has also been recognized by the American Dance Festival, and been presented five times in National Galas of the American College Dance Festival Association, including performances at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Full evenings of Robin’s work have been presented by NCSU Center Stage and the Southeast Women’s Studies Conference. Additionally, her work has toured four seasons with the North Carolina Dance Festival, and been a featured subject on National Public Radio’s “Studio 360.” Robin holds a B.A. in French and an M.A. in dance from The Ohio State University, and has received certification from the Dance Notation Bureau as a Labanotation teacher.

The Community Event Showing features choreography by Renay Aumiller (Elon University), Emily Daughtridge (Appalachian State University), Kate Davis (Raleigh, NC), Virginia Freeman Dupont (UNC-Greensboro), Amy Jones (Tabor City, NC), and Megan Rhodes (Greenville, NC).  The Showing will take place on Saturday, November 22, at 7:30 p.m., at the close of the event. For the full Community Event schedule, registration and class information, teacher and choreographer bios and more, visit Registration for the Community Event, as well as individual tickets for the Showing, will also be available on-site at the Durham School of the Arts during the event on November 22, 2014.

This project is supported by the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, and the Capezio/Ballet Makers Dance Foundation.

About the North Carolina Dance Alliance

The North Carolina Dance Alliance (NCDA) is the nonprofit state service organization established in 1982 to serve and support the development of dance in North Carolina. NCDA offers programs and services that address the changing needs of the state’s dance community, including events, awards, scholarships, communications, and artist services. For more information, visit