Students at Champlin Brooklyn Park Academy (CBPA) are busy preparing for Fine Arts Night which will be held next week. The event will combine art displays throughout the hallways with the annual choir concert and a dance presentation. The dance program is a culmination of a dance
residency with instructor Robin Nelson. For the past decade, Nelson has worked as an artist-in-residency at schools throughout Minnesota sharing her love and knowledge of folk-dancing. This past month, CBPA welcomed her in to teach students about songs and dances from around the world.
Some of the dances students have learned include “Traffic Jam,” a North American folk song that utilizes musical cues to define the dance steps. Another dance the students learned honoring Russia is “Troika.” This dance is considered a prance which implements a “spokes-on-a-wheel” style of dancing. Learning folk dances in March wouldn’t be complete without learning an Irish dance. The students learned about “casting off” to the Irish tune of “The Bridge of Athlone.”
Nelson integrates teaching the students about body usage, action, space, time and energy while teaching the dances.
“Some of this may be familiar from other forms of art that you have studied,” she said to students during a dance lesson.
The school combined physical education and music classes in order to conduct the dance residency.
Nelson likes to end the residency with a family dance party where the students can in turn, lead their parents in the dances.
The dance party, along with the choir concert and art display will round out Fine Arts Night Tuesday, April 2 running from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the school. CBPA is located at 6100 109th Ave. North, Champlin.
Contact Mindy Mateuszczyk at [email protected]