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Segerstrom Center for the Arts and American Dance Movement present National Dance Day celebrations

National Dance Day 2019. Photo by Stan Sholik.
National Dance Day 2019. Photo by Stan Sholik.

Segerstrom Center for the Arts is proud to present the 12th annual National Dance Day (NDD) in partnership with American Dance Movement (ADM). Segerstrom Center joins The Kennedy Center as the official site of this year’s NDD celebrations on Saturday, September 18. Recognized by Congress as a national day of dance, NDD promotes dance as a form of valuable exercise and artistic expression.  

Segerstrom Center events will be held from 4-8pm on the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza. Dancer/Actor Tony Bellissimo will emcee the evening, which will feature fully inclusive and interactive dance lessons in a wide variety of dance styles, along with opportunities to learn this year’s official NDD routine, choreographed by Brian and Scott Nicholson, accomplished dancers, singers and artists who have toured as dancers, choreographers and creative directors for Ariana Grande. The Nicholsons have been working with the popstar for the past 11 years and were recently nominated for a MTV Video Music Award for “Best Choreography” for their work on Grande’s “34+35” video. The day’s celebrations will also include performances and classes by Chinese Dance Company of Southern California, Miriya Lee (K-pop workshop), N8tive Hoop, Dr. Jewel and African Soul International (African dance workshop), students from Segerstrom Center’s American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School, and more to come. 

National Dance Day  2019. Photo by Stan Sholik.
National Dance Day 2019. Photo by Stan Sholik.

Bank of America is the presenting sponsor of inclusive programming for NDD’s west coast celebration. Thanks to Bank of America’s continued generous support for Segerstrom Center for the Arts’ Studio D: Arts School for All Abilities, the Center will release a recorded video in the weeks leading up to the event with an adaptable dance warm-up and sensory guide frontloading what to expect day-of. During the event, there will also be a workshop led by Studio D dance teachers and musicians, encouraging movers of all abilities to participate in the celebration. This workshop will be open to all, including current Studio D students, Center patrons, participants from the Challenger program, Bank of America’s Disability Action Network and the general community. 

The west coast celebration will also highlight the impact that dance has made across artistic genres. Throughout the day, Segerstrom Center’s new neighbor, the Orange County Museum of Art will present Global Groove (1973), a seminal video work by Nam June Paik (1932-2006), who is widely considered the inventor of video art. Global Groove is a hallucinatory mélange of images, text and sound that anticipates the music video genre and serves as an early manifesto on international communication. With dance as a recurring motif connecting disparate clips and art forms, this iconic work suggests an unbounded world of possibilities for new forms of expression to arise through cross-cultural and transdisciplinary encounters. Guests can delve further in a DIY video art-making workshop and create their own digital “groove” inspired by Paik’s artistic language on their mobile devices. 

NDD was launched in 2010, by So You Think You Can Dance Co-Creator and ADM Co-Founder Nigel Lythgoe in partnership with Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, who introduced a resolution declaring the last Saturday in July to be the country’s official National Dance Day. As of 2019, NDD celebration is celebrated annually on the third Saturday in September. Founded by Lythgoe and Adam Shankman (producer of HairsprayStep UpWhat Men Want and more), ADM has created an instructional dance video of the NDD routine since 2010, that invites participants to learn original choreography and put their own spin on it. The grassroots campaign highlights the importance of physical activity through dance, which, in addition to improving cardiovascular health, also improves self-confidence, self-expression and social skills. 

The west coast celebration of National Dance Day will be held on Saturday, September 18, from 4-8pm, at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Advance registrations are required. The event is general admission, and guests can reserve their spot with a $10 per person reservation fee. The $10 fee is credited to the patron’s Center account after attending the September 18 event. The credit can be applied toward any ticket purchase made by October 31, for any Segerstrom Center performance. For more, visit scfta.org. To learn more about American Dance Movement and National Dance Day, visit the website at AmericanDanceMovement.org.

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