Boogie Nights: Dance Clinics Jazz Up Festival
Music feeds Sadie Champlin’s creativity when she’s choreographing. So the chance to be a part of the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival and share her passion for dance during movement clinics is an opportunity not to be missed.
A senior dance major, the Kimberly, Idaho, native will be teaching hip hop as one of 27 movement sessions offered over three days during the jazz festival.
“It’s a really great way to participate in the jazz festival,” says Champlin, who currently teaches beginning hip hop at the University. “It’s so fun, I love it.”
The jazz-related dance sessions move from swing to hip hop, and from West African dance to steppin’; from salsa to Broadway, and from Bollywood to boogie.
University of Idaho dance department coordinator Greg Halloran says the movement clinics are an example of a greater initiative to include art exhibitions into the jazz festival. As a member of the arts committee, Halloran is working with both the University and the city to include visual art in the festival.
Halloran say that when the clinics began 10 years ago, they had about 300-500 participants. That number grew to 1,800 participants last year. To accommodate the number of clinics and the interest, Halloran says he relies on dance faculty, alumni, current students and regional instructors to teach. In addition, they use dance majors and minors to help facilitate the number of participants.
“It’s great to see the interest in the clinics,” says Halloran. “Music and dance compliment each other, and we are happy to offer our expertise at the festival.”
Halloran notes the clinics are especially popular with junior and senior high school students, and that some schools require students who attend the festival to participate in a dance class.
With so many ages and levels in the movement clinics, Champlin says the clinics are great for the general public because they begin with the basics and do not require any background coming in.
“Literally, we teach from step one,” says Champlin. “It’s very easy to master the lessons, and people feel good about their dancing when we’re done.”
In addition, participants can try out their swing and Latin dance skills on the dance floor at Saturday night’s concert.
And while participants are enjoying learning new dance steps, Champlin is building her teaching skills and her resume.
Classes will be offered Thursday, Friday and Saturday, in the morning and early afternoon, in the Physical Education Building. Each class lasts about an hour each and all are free and open to the public. For a full schedule, see the jazz festival website: www.uidaho.edu/jazzfest/festival/clinicsandworkshops