In the early 2000’s the Uptown Dance Academy was located in the large loft space above a discount department store in East Harlem. After climbing the steep double flight of stairs, I met a group of young dancers warming up in a small subdivided studio. Director Robin Williams introduced me to the cherubic faced girls and boys; whose youthful exuberance and joy of endless possibilities filled the room. Williams and I had a brief conversation, which ended in a private joke. In the corner a girl stretching on the floor responded to my comment with a hearty “ole soul” laugh; that doe-eyed precocious eleven-year old was Khalia Campbell.Continue reading
Thanksgiving signals the official start of the holiday season. It is also the beginning of the holiday arts season and this week the excitement is palpable. Theatre aboard from City College to Hell’s Kitchen, music brings back the 60’s on the Upper Westside, with protest art in Chelsea; and while the Ailey company celebrates turning 60 in midtown, we have a group of over 60 “Sugar Babies” dancing in Harlem.Here are a few of the many events happening in the city that never sleeps, guaranteed to keep you Out and About.
The Dance Of the Village Elders will present Only In The Darkness Can You See The Starsthe spring performance/fundraiser on Saturday, April 28, 3pm at St. Philip’s Church 204 west 134thStreet. The performance will celebrate Village Elders friend and supporter Ailey icon Dudley Williams, who danced the role of the elder minister at the works premiere April 30th, 2015, sadly this was Williams’ last performance. Joining the celebration are Harlem arts organizations Harlem School of the Arts dance division (under the direction of Aubrey Lynch), Uptown Dance Academy (Robin Williams Executive Director) pianist Charles Lovell (St. Philip’s Church) singing phenom LaFredrick Coaxner (Abyssinian Baptist Church) and Reverend Tykym Stallings (Lighthouse Ministries Inc., Harlem N.Y.).Continue reading
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