Dance has the ability to address important social issues at both the intellectual and emotional levels. For this session, BIODANCE will perform dances that comprise the company’s “Social Justice” project, followed by an interactive discussion with the audience. Social issues that will be addressed in the pieces include LGBTQ homelessness, racial tension, police brutality, inequities of resources, and social indifference to the many injustices that exist. While the event strives to bring the audience through the darkness of social injustice, hope and a celebration of diversity in these troubled times is the major theme of the project.
Session Goals and Outcomes Use dance to convey examples of social injustice in our society today. Have the audience view the dances with an eye to identify the social issues presented in the dances. Have the audience view the dances with an eye to identify how the dances affected them emotionally. Leave the audience with an appreciation of diversity and the spirit of hope and unity in the face of social injustice.
Jeanne Schickler Compisi
Maureen Gorman, Graduate Student in Dance, The College at Brockport
Sarah Johnson – Brockport Dance Alumna
Alaina Olivieri ’99 – Brockport Dance Alumna
Laura M. Regna ’98 – Brockport Dance Alumna
Julie Schlafer Rossette ’05 – Chemical Dependency Prevention Counselor , The Center for Youth
Missy Pfohl Smith ’92, Artistic Director of BIODANCE & Director of the Program of Dance and Movement, University of Rochester
Stuart Tsubota, PhD, Professor of Biology, The College at Brockport
Stuart Tsubota, PhD, has been a university professor for 31 years, receiving grants from NIH and NSF to support his research. While genetics is his first passion, he has a second interest in dance. Stuart has performed with local dance companies in England and in the United States since 1980 and with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in their production of Last Supper at Uncle Tom’s Cabin/The Promised Land. Since 2006, he has performed in New York, Geneva, and Rochester including the last three Rochester Fringe Festivals with the Rochester-based modern dance company, BIODANCE.
Missy Pfohl Smith is the Artistic Director of BIODANCE and the Director of the Program of Dance and Movement at the University of Rochester. She received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and her BS from The College at Brockport. Based in NYC for 12 years, Missy performed and toured with Randy James Dance Works as a founding company member from 1993 to 2003. Missy has performed and taught across the U.S. and in Greece, Poland, Germany, Estonia, Latvia & Japan. She has recently been developing a BIO/DANCE and Social Justice Series that features socially conscious choreography and community outreach.
Julie Schlafer Rossette is a Chemical Dependency Prevention Counselor at The Center for Youth. She received an MS in School Counseling from the University of Rochester and a BFA in Dance from The College at Brockport. In 2005, she was a performer at the Walt Disney World resort in Orlando. Since then, she has performed extensively in the Rochester area in festivals including Vision of Sound, ImageMovementSound, Rochester Contemporary Dance Collective, and the Rochester Fringe Festival. She has performed with a number of groups including the Rochester Raiderettes, Kista Tucker Dance, and since 2007 with BIODANCE.