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Mason School of Dance to Present Gala
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Mason School of Dance to Present Gala

Concert will spotlight talented dancers for area audiences.

Carlos Martinez and Jovick Pavajeau will be performing in the 2019 Mason Dance Gala Concert.

Carlos Martinez and Jovick Pavajeau will be performing in the 2019 Mason Dance Gala Concert. Photo by Tim Coburn/Courtesy GMU

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Mia Brice will be performing in the 2019 Mason Dance Gala Concert.

One of the nation’s top university dance programs is located in Northern Virginia: the George Mason University School of Dance. The highly selective Mason School of Dance accepts fewer than two dozen new dance majors each year. The program’s national reputation is such that the School of Dance performed at a major celebration for master choreographer Lar Lubovitch; a rare event for a university dance company.

Now area performing arts audiences will have the opportunity to see Mason School of Dance students showcased. The annual Mason Dance Gala will feature “a dynamic performance of technically demanding and intensely driven work by talented students as they embark upon their promising dance careers.” said Susan Shields. Director, Mason School of Dance

This year’s Dance Gala will include student performances choreographed by guest choreographers Lucinda Childs, the American postmodern dancer/choreographer and actress, Spanish modern ballet dancer and choreographer, Nacho Duato; and Greek choreographer Andonis Foniadakis, who has collaborated with ballet companies worldwide as both dancer and choreographer.

The Mason Dance Gala program includes “works that are vastly different, so I am certain it will be a stimulating evening," said Shields. The program is: “Dance #1 by Childs, “Na Floresta” by Duato, and “Kosmos” by Foniadakis.

Mason senior Madison Long is a Lake Braddock Secondary School graduate. She applied to the “the highly competitive challenging Mason School of Dance because of the caliber of the faculty, dance mentors and the opportunities Mason offered to learn from guest artists.”

Long spoke eloquently how dancers learn not only to move in solo, but with a partner with this key element; “building trust; dancers learn to silently feel each other’s breath as we perform together.” She said, “there is no right or wrong and no one way you are supposed to feel or think about a dance performance … simply allow yourself to be open to the experience.”

Sarah Zucchero, from Cape Elizabeth, Maine, will perform in Childs’ Dance #1. "While the audience is witnessing a trance-like sweeping of bodies across the stage, there is this other profound dance occurring simultaneously behind the wings. The dancers are keeping track of the mesmerizing Philip Glass composition by cueing each other and conferring with the work's written score.”

Ariel Goussak, a dance major originally from Las Vegas, Nevada invited guests to the Dance Gala event, adding, "I am really excited by how diverse all of the pieces in this year's Gala.”

2019 Mason Dance Gala Concert, George Mason University/Center for the Arts, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax. Performances: Friday, March 29 and Saturday, March 30 at 8 p.m. The 2019 Mason Dance Fete will be a special event beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, 2019, to support Mason School of Dance scholarships.

Where and When

2019 Mason Dance Gala Concert, George Mason University/Center for the Arts, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax. Performances: Friday, March 29 and Saturday, March 30 at 8 p.m. Tickets $25 for adults; $15 for students, staff, and seniors; special ticket prices for groups of 10 or more. To purchase tickets, visit https://cfa.gmu.edu/ or call 703-993-8888.

Note: There will be a special event beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, 2019, to support Mason School of Dance scholarships. It is the 2019 Mason Dance Fete. The event takes places in locations in the George Mason University/deLaski Performing Arts Building. The events showcase Mason Dance students. Patrons can meet the students, get a dance expert’s insight into choreography, and learn about the works in the Dance Gala. There will be hors d'oeuvres, dessert and wine reception with faculty, students, and other supporters as well as a presentation by choreographer Lucinda Childs. For more information about tickets and sponsorships to support Mason School of Dance scholarships contact Alice Magelssen-Green at amagelssen@gmu.edu.