By Deborah Searle.
After visiting eleven other cities, The Pulse 2010 ‘Find Your Voice’ Tour ended in Atlanta on March 20th and 21st. And what a way to finish, with the entire star studded faculty at the event! With classes from Brian Friedman, Mia Michaels, Wade Robson, LaurieAnn Gibson, Tyce Diorio, Gil Duldulao, Cris Judd, and Dave Scott, the dancers attending enjoyed a challenging, yet inspiring weekend.
Held at the Georgia World Congress Center, each level enjoyed large ballrooms to dance in. I relished the opportunity in the Advanced/Pro room to learn from the industry’s leaders. Each class was an hour or longer and we all got the chance to take at least one class from each faculty member. Dave, LaurieAnn, Gil and Cris taught Hip Hop, Tyce and Brian taught Jazz, Wade gave us his own unique style with repertoire from his work on SYTYCD and Mia shared with us her contemporary/lyrical expertise. All the classes were tough and demanding, but tailored to each level. I particularly loved the choreography in each routine we learnt. We weren’t just learning steps, but a unique style and form of expression. I enjoyed Wade and Mia’s classes the most, as their movement sits well with my dance background and personal taste.
On the Saturday night the dancers got their moment to shine with a Pulse Showcase, where they performed group routines from their studios or companies. With a large variety of dance styles displayed at different levels, it made for an interesting show. Some of the talent was outstanding. There are amazing dancers coming out of US studios, as well as some exceptional choreography. There were, of course, many cheesy ‘competition’ like numbers, but these were fun and mostly executed well.
At a teachers lunch on the Sunday, studio teachers and choreographers were given feedback from the faculty on the work they presented, which was constructive and helpful.
After the grueling two days of classes The Pulse event ended with a faculty question and answer session. The students took great advantage of this, asking their idols about their childhoods, dance backgrounds, aspirations and even about the passing of Michael Jackson, who they have all worked closely with. The faculty, who enjoy a wonderful family like relationship, laughed and told stories, really taking the time to answer each question and communicate with their fans. They were real and encouraging.
The Pulse provides a great opportunity for young dancers, budding professionals and teachers to learn from some of America’s top commercial artists and choreographers. The faculty are accessible and friendly and they take the time to impart their passion into the dancers. The Pulse is not for everyone, with only a few dance styles covered, but for those who love hip hop, jazz and/or contemporary, or who just want a challenge, this convention is a real treat.
Next on The Pulse schedule is their huge Summer events in Los Angeles and New York.
For more information visit www.thepulseontour.com
Photos: Courtesy of The Pulse