For the BFA students at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, summer break does not mean a break from dance training. Many BFAs continue to train at various summer intensives and company programs. These programs take them all over the world. Take a look at what four of our students have been up to this summer so far.
Madison Falconer (BFA ’23) announces FALCO, her project-based dance company. Its first initiative is the WOODWORKS Traverse City Residency Program, which hosts artists for a two-week creative collaborative process.
As we near the end of the fiscal year, we ask, if you are able, to consider making a gift to the USC Kaufman annual fund to helpful fulfill the dreams and visions of our ever talented, dedicated and hard-working artist scholars.
Alumnus Noah Guthier (BFA ‘19) always had an interest in multimedia production in addition to dance. In his junior year at USC Kaufman, he began teaching himself the basic skills and softwares for motion capture work. Now, Guthier has created Purple Virtual, which focuses on his creative passion for motion capture and 3D art.
During her time here, Brianna Mims (BFA ’19) began creating work addressing various social issues. Her most recent project, titled Uncle Ronnie’s Room, tells the story of her uncle’s illegal incarceration. Uncle Ronnie’s Room consists of four parts: a billboard campaign, an archival installation at Chuco’s Justice Center, a docuseries and a performance by Mims.
Joan E. Herman, a leader in business and healthcare consulting, has recently joined the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance Board of Councilors. Currently, she serves as the president and CEO of Herman and Associates LLC, a healthcare and management consulting firm, which specializes in consulting to private equity firms investing in healthcare.
Starting this fall, the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance welcomes three new Artists in Residence. They include Peter Chu, Dani Rowe and Yin Yue. These renowned artists will work with BFA students, teaching classes and setting choreography.
Lauren Brophy (BFA ’23) and several of her peers recently traveled to Berlin, Germany for the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance Maymester. This year’s program was led by professors Bruce McCormick and Thomas McManus, who both have lived in Germany. In this student blog, Lauren shares her experience seeing live performances in Germany and reflects on the three-week course.
The University of Southern California has named dance scholar Julia M. Ritter as dean of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, effective July 1. Ritter is currently a professor of dance at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, where she served as chair and artistic director of the department of dance from 2010 to 2021.
Ashton Benn (BFA ’24) and several other BFA students just finished their second week in Berlin, Germany as part of USC Kaufman’s Maymester. In this student blog, Ashton shares what she hopes to discover about herself through her travels and reflects on her first impressions of Berlin, including taking class at Radialsystem studios.
Hayden Rivas (BFA ’24) is currently in Berlin, Germany on a Maymester with the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance. This three-week long course is led by USC Kaufman professors Thomas McManus and Bruce McCormick. During the trip, BFA students will have the opportunity to attend dance classes, watch opera and avant-garde performance viewings, and take architecture tours, among other cultural experiences.
To close the spring semester, USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance BFA students performed in a culminating event at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, Calif. The show featured both highly-renowned and new choreography from artists including USC Kaufman lecturer Achinta S. McDaniel, guest artists Ohad Naharin and Justin Peck, and Artists in Residence Tessandra Chavez, Toyin Sogunro and Doug Varone.
On Friday, May 13, the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance hosted a satellite commencement ceremony at Founders Park to celebrate the Class of 2022. In addition to opening remarks from Dean Robert Cutietta, USC President Carol L. Folt and visionary founder Glorya Kaufman shared a few words with the graduating class.
This semester, Kaufman Connections returned to fully in-person instruction. This community engagement initiative brings the choreographic process with a focus on hip-hop to the 32nd Street Elementary School. BFA students from the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance work as teaching artists to give weekly, one-hour dance classes to the elementary school students.
While continuing to navigate Covid related safety measures, Spring 2022 saw a complete return to in person instruction and events. This semester, the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance presented many exciting performances, including their LA debut at The Wallis.
The Southern California Choreographic Collective (SCCC) is a student-led organization. They have four main pillars: highlight student choreography, create space for students to present work, use dance as a means to create community, and promote collaboration.
Celeste M. Alleyne, an executive at Microsoft and great admirer of the arts, recently became the newest member of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance Board of Councilors. In addition to her vast work in diversity, equity and inclusion, corporate communications, local government and higher education, dance is a great passion for Alleyne who studied under Virginia Wolf at the internationally acclaimed Boston Ballet.
Last month, BFA students at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance had the honor of taking a master class with the world-renowned dancer and choreographer Brian Friedman. This opportunity was a way for us to have hands-on experience in the commercial dance industry.
Today, May 4th, our annual Day of SCupport, we celebrate what keeps our Trojan Family connected across generations and united in a common purpose: to help USC excel and advance the mission in teaching, research, artistic creation, professional practice and public service.
Interested in learning about how dance can be beneficial to our neurology? USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance’s newest course explores the benefits of dance for people with Parkinson’s disease, and puts that knowledge into action with fieldwork in the community.
USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance offers various courses that are open not only to BFA students, but to all USC students. This fall, USC Kaufman will offer many new exciting open courses, including Intro to Hip-Hop, Spirituality and Social Change, and more.
Michael Breeden, an Artist in Residence at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, met choreographer Justin Peck when they were peers at the School of American Ballet. Now after two decades of friendship, Breeden is staging Peck’s version of “Rodeo” for the USC Kaufman debut at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.
This semester, Artist in Residence Toyin Sogunro created a new work with BFA students at USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance. Her piece, titled The Artist’s Struggle for Integrity, will premiere at the USC Kaufman debut at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on April 21-23, 2022.
Achinta S. McDaniel, USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance lecturer, considers her work as an Indian American choreographer to be contemporary. While her choreography employs some classical Indian elements, including Kathak, she views her work as a unique American creation. For the upcoming USC Kaufman debut at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, McDaniel created a new piece titled “1947” with the BFA first and second year students.
Lecturer Bret Easterling joined Batsheva Dance Company in Tel Aviv, Israel after graduating from college. He danced with them for seven years under the art direction of Ohad Naharin. Once he left, Easterling began working as a stager of Naharin’s work for collegiate dance programs and companies. For the upcoming USC Kaufman debut at The Wallis, he is staging Naharin’s “Minus 16” with BFA juniors and seniors.
This semester, two-time Emmy Award-winning choreographer Tessandra Chavez set a new work on BFA students from the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance. Her piece, titled “Big White Room,” will premiere at the USC Kaufman debut at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on April 21-23, 2022.
This semester, Artist in Residence Doug Varone worked with members of the Class of 2024 to create a new work. The students will perform this piece titled “the momentum of memory” at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on April 21-23, 2022. In this article and corresponding video, students discuss what the rehearsal process was like.
For Anne Kim (BFA ‘22), combining her dance training with her studies in gerontology offered a natural fit for her senior project. As Kim finishes up her time at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, she is also pursuing a progressive Master’s of Science in Gerontology at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology. Kim’s project will offer a showcase of film, visual art and dance all inspired by and made in collaboration with her grandmother.
During her time at the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, India Dobbie (BFA ’22) volunteered as a Teaching Artist through Kaufman Connections at 32nd Street Elementary School near campus. She also combined her BFA training with a minor in the Dynamics of Early Childhood minor through the USC Rossier School of Education. These experiences helped shape her senior project titled “Choreographic Connections in our Community.”
On April 1 and 2, the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance will hold its biennial Cypher Summit. While the overarching theme of the event continues to showcase the importance of hip-hop in educational spaces at the university level, this year’s summit centers on women in hip-hop. In this spirit, USC Kaufman partnered with the nonprofit organization Ladies of Hip-Hop to plan the event.