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For the week of January 31 through February 6, 2001

‘Salsa Celebration’

Footlight Dance offers lecture-demonstrations on Latin music and dance

Express Arts Editor

Salsa Celebration—Latin Music and Dance is a week-long program presented by the Footlight Dance Centre, intended to educate dance lovers about the historical development of Latin music and its influence on dance forms. The program, which travels to area schools the week of Feb. 5 through Feb. 9, will be a combination of lecture and dance demonstrations.

Thirty-five dancers from the Wood River Middle School, High School and The Community School will participate in the program, to be narrated by Footlight Dance director Hilarie Neely. Latin dances, of which there are several, have had a direct influence on social, jazz, tap and folk dance forms.

By way of demonstration, dancers will perform to music by Los Romeros, Ricky Martin, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass and music from the ballet Don Quixote.

Neely has prepared a fairly extensive history of the development of Latin dances. She has incorporated that history into the program. According to Neely, much of the development of Latin dances occurred during the settlement of the New World. Spanish settlers brought with them folk dances, of which flamenco was one. Those dances mixed with the dances of the African slaves working the fields and mines.

Some of the more recognizable forms that Neely and her dancers will address are the rumba, mambo, cha-cha-cha, conga and salsa.

The dance demonstration will be at Bellevue Elementary on Monday at 9 a.m., Carey School (10 a.m.) and Hailey Elementary (2 p.m.) on Tuesday, The Community School on Wednesday, Feb. 7 at 8:45 a.m., the Wood River High School on Thursday, Feb. 8 at 9:30 a.m. and at the Wood River Middle School on Friday, Feb. 9, at 2:20 p.m.


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