Main Street Arts offers dance workshops

Contemporary Partnering is one focus in the dance workshop series at Main Street Arts. Photo provided

SAXTONS RIVER, Vt. – Main Street Arts is offering a series of dance workshops with professional dancer and choreographer Neva Cockrell of Loom Ensemble on four Tuesdays in May. All workshops will run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Cockrell is the artistic director of Loom, where she choreographs and directs new dance-theater works in the U.S., Dubai, and Europe. Her diverse background in gymnastics, contact improvisation, and Contemporary Dance fuse with her passion for storytelling and culture shift to make dynamic, relevant dance-theater performances.

May 7 will focus on Storytelling with Your Body. The class we will delve into how effectively the body is used to tell stories, create characters, and communicate clearly, studying facial expressions, gestures, and posture and then crafting small performances using both body and voice.

May 14 will be Contemporary Dance for beginning and experienced dancers. Class begins with a technique-based warm-up with an emphasis on strength, flexibility, and balance, followed by a series of exercises to build specific dance skills and an ability to move freely and ending by learning a contemporary phrase, practicing full-body movement and dynamic performing.

May 21 is Contemporary Partnering to develop the basic skills of contemporary partnering and lifting that are the baseline for moving with other people and creating duo or trio work both in dance and physical theater. Ideas from Contact Improvisation, Physical Theater, and Partner Acrobatics will be used to create a blend of techniques that allow people to move freely with each other. Developing physical listening skills, anatomical knowledge of lifting, and work on strength, flexibility, and grace are also included.

The final workshop May 28 is Movement for Actors. Students will develop new movement skills, learn to use their bodies to communicate in performance, and practice the fundamentals of contemporary dance. While this workshop is designed with actors in mind, it is open for anyone interested in embodiment practice and dance.

Pre-registration is required by contacting Main Street Arts at or 802-869-2960. Further information is available at or on Facebook.

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