|Andrew Smith, a senior dance major, is pictured in the choreography “Bitter Sorrow,” that was presented by UTPA Dance Program students in the gala concert at the 2013 American College Dance Festival Association regional event held at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas March 5-10.|
Francisco Munoz, program coordinator of the UTPA Dance Program, said it is difficult to get in the Gala because there are so many top notch dance programs throughout the southwest region.
“Our dance major/minor program, which was implemented in 2002, is very young in comparison to the schools we are presenting against,” Munoz said. “We are so proud of Professor Min Kim and the dancers who worked hard to accomplish this. They represented the Dance Program, the University, and the Valley with an amazing level of both technical and artistic professionalism.”
“Bitter Sorrow” was performed by dance majors Anette Arechandieta, Adalaila Castillo, Abigail Grojean, Andrew Smith, Sorayda Solis, Max Tijerina, Robert Tovar, and Courtney Wantland.
Dance students Bianca M. Renteria and Isaac Pena also presented their choreographies at the conference. Bianca’s choreography entitled “Entity” was submitted for adjudication. Pena’s work, “Vamp” was presented in an informal concert. Both students received positive reviews and excellent audience participation. The University’s student performers for these works were: Milagros Belmares, Adalaila Castillo, Ricardo Flores, Abigail Grojean, Sandra Izaguirre, Felicia Lara, Daniela Martinez, Betty Soto, Andrew Smith, Robert Tovar, and Courtney Wantland.
The UTPA dance programs’ strong showing at the regional festival continues a remarkable run of ACDFA success. In 2007 and 2012, choreographies from the UTPA Dance Program were selected for the regional festival Gala Concert. In 2012, a choreography submitted by Francisco Munoz and performed by the UTPA Ballet Folklorico, was showcased at the biennial 2012 National College Dance Festival held at the JFK Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.
The ACDFA supports and promotes the wealth of talent and creativity that is prominent throughout college and university dance departments. ACDFA's sponsorship of regional and national dance festivals provides the venue for students to engage in workshops,lecture/demonstrations and master classes taught by instructors from around the region and country.
The festivals also provide the unique opportunity for students and faculty to have their dance works adjudicated by a panel of nationally-recognized dance professionals in an open and constructive forum. Culminating with the presentation of pieces selected for their exemplary artistic quality, the festivals are the primary means for college and university dance programs to perform outside their own academic setting and be exposed to the diversity of the national college dance world.