LANGuage Summer Residency
Before the close of SPA's 2013-2014 Season, Jessica Lang Dance returned to Houston with a summer dance residency entitled, LANGuage. The LANGuage residency, led by Jessica Lang herself, is a unique educational program that teaches students about the choreographic process. The week-long residency was held from Monday, June 16 through Friday, June 20, 2014 at the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center (ERJCC). The program was divided into half day sessions with a final presentation at the end of the week. The morning sessions consisted of middle school students from Johnston Middle School, and the afternoon sessions were made up of dance professionals and adults from within the Houston community.
Dance students from Johnston Middle School explored the choreographic journey where, collectively, they chose the idea for a dance, created the movement, decided the costumes and performed their dance in front of a large audience at the ERJCC Kaplan Theatre.
| || |
Local dance instructors, college students and professional dancers worked closely with Jessica Lang and her company members to create new and innovative movement vocabulary. Participants gained one-on-one instruction and overall felt inspired to incorporate the LANGuage curriculum into their dance career.
In addition to the choreographic workshop at the ERJCC, Jessica Lang and her company members, Clifton Brown and Laura Mead, simultaneously worked with students from the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA). In just four days, a nine-minute dance was created, completed and set on 12 HSPVA senior concert dancers.
| || |
Special thanks to Maxine Silberstein, the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center, the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and Jessica Lang Dance for partnering with SPA to provide the LANGuage residency.
On Friday, June 20, 2014, a final presentation was held in the ERJCC Kaplan Theatre. Jessica Lang discussed her definition of the choreographic process while workshop participants demonstrated their interpretation of the LANGuage curriculum. Plus, the HSPVA concert dancers were given the opportunity to perform their piece by Jessica Lang in front of an audience for the first time. The final presentation attracted approximately 130 audience members that consisted of parents, teachers and camp students from the ERJCC.
Jessica Lang has vast experience guiding students through the LANGuage curriculum at countless universities, performing arts organizations and schools including American Ballet Theatre for its Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School and Summer Intensive Programs and New York University for its Steinhardt Masters Program. Lang is skilled at teaching all levels of students and professionals including arts educators, sending them back to their students refreshed and re-energized in their creative theories and tools.
Based in New York City, Jessica Lang Dance was founded in 2011, marked by Lang’s receipt of a Joyce Theater Residency supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Jessica Lang Dance made its full company debut at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival’s 80th Anniversary Season in July 2012. The Company has garnered significant attention and acclaim from performances at major venues throughout the country.