Boys & Girls of Clubs of San Francisco (BGCSF) and San Francisco Ballet are partnering up to offer a free, week-long dance program to promote creative expression and encourage education through the arts!
For five consecutive days, BGCSF members will have the opportunity to take classes from professional teaching artists on-site at the San Francisco Ballet School (455 Franklin Street at Fulton). The program will culminate in a recital for friends and family to attend on Friday, June 12 at 4:00pm.
Creative Movement: Have you always wanted to dance in the Nutcracker ballet? Now’s your chance! Join this fun class and learn several Nutcracker roles.
Ms. DeCaminada entered SF Ballet School as a pre-ballet student and subsequently completed the School's entire course of study. As a student in the School, she performed roles in SF Ballet's Nutcracker and other Company productions. In 1995, Ms. DeCaminada joined the SF Ballet School faculty. She earned her bachelors degree from UC Berkeley as an Alumni Scholar with a specialization in education, teaching, and early childhood development.
Dance Theatre: The class will explore elements of a dance production, and over the course of the week, the students will create a brand new work. The students will be the creative team, and they’ll choose the music, story line, costumes, and make up the dance!
Mr. Lyons began his training at age 11 in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and later trained at the American Ballet Theatre School. He began his professional career as a member of American Ballet Theatre II and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. In 1989, he joined Pennsylvania Ballet where he danced a varied repertory. Upon his retirement in 1996, Mr. Lyons joined the faculty of The Rock School of Pennsylvania Ballet, and in 1999, he joined the faculty of SF Ballet School.
Bollywood: Hurray for Bollywood! Learn fun and energetic dance steps and dances from India which reflect the cultural traditions of this HUGE Asian country and sub-continent!
Joti Singh is a dance creator and dance innovator, sprung from the U.S. American south to parents from northern India. She is the founder and Artistic Director of Duniya Dance and Drum Company. She has created works such as “Half and Halves,” about the Punjabi-Mexican communities of California and “The Madness of the Elephant,” about Guinea’s first president, Sekou Toure. Joti has received funding from the Creative Work Fund, the San Francisco Arts Commission, Dancers’ Group, SF Grants for the Arts, and the Alliance for California Traditional Arts. She has been an Artist-in-Residence at CounterPULSE twice, most recently in their Performing Diaspora program. Joti and her husband, musician Bongo Sidibé, lead annual trips to Guinea and recently opened the Duniya Center for Arts and Education in Conakry. Joti holds an MA in South Asian Studies from UC Berkeley and a BA in English from Reed College.
Hip Hop: If you love to dance, move and groove, then the Hip Hop class is for you! Join the fun and experience the creative process of Hip Hop!
Kirstin Williams is the Artistic Director of Strong Pulse Dance Crew utilizing lyrical, hip hop, contemporary & modern genres of dance. Kirstin received her MFA in dance from Mills College and currently teaches in the dance department at City College of San Francisco. Check out www.strongcurrent.org
West African Dance: There are so many cultures and peoples in West Africa, and we invite you to explore this rich dance forms through movement and music!
Maura Whelehan is a native of Rochester, New York, where she danced, performed, and taught children as well as adults for Bushmango Drum and Dance for 8 years. She also performed and studied with Akoma Ntoaso, a collective that explored Afro-fusion and modern dance with members of Garth Fagan Dance. After moving to the Bay Area over 5 years ago, she has been honored to study with the many local West African artists both as a dancer and a drummer. She began dancing with Duniya Dance and Drum Company in 2011, with whom she performs and teaches students of all ages. Maura has been a Teaching Artist for The San Francisco Ballet’s Dances in Schools and Communities program (DISC) since 2013, and has been grateful to work with over 2,000 elementary school students throughout San Francisco.
Drummer and accompanist
Alpha Oumar “Bongo” Sidibé is a traditional drummer from Conakry, Guinea in West Africa. He is Musical Director of Duniya Dance and Drum Company. Bongo studied with Master Drummer Mamady Keita at his school, Tam Tam Mandigue, Guinea, and participated in his workshops in Conakry and Balandougou, Mamady’s village. He performed with Ballet Jah Karlo in Dakar, Senegal, and recorded the CD “N’dguel Fall” and toured with Orchestre Baye Fall. Before leaving Guinea, he was co-director of Balandougou Kan, a group of traditional percussionists and dancers. Since arriving in the U.S., Bongo has performed with Rhythm Village, Joan Baez, Mickey Hart, the Grateful Dead, The Dogon Lights and Black Nature from the Sierra Leone Refugee Allstars. He is also the founder and lead singer of the international reggae group Wontanara.
Chevron, the Flora Family Foundation, and Pacific Gas and Electric Company are the Co-Lead Sponsors of the San Francisco Ballet Center for Dance Education.
Major support for the Center for Dance Education is provided the Wells Fargo Foundation. Generous support is provided by the Gap Foundation and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.
Major Support for Dance in Schools and Communities is provided by the Charles Henry Leach II Foundation.