Tuesday, November 07, 2006


EDITORIAL CONTACT: Lisa L. Rollins, 615-898-2919

Guest Dancers’ Master Classes, Lectures Free & Open to Public, Director Says

(MURFREESBORO)—The faculty of MTSU’s dance program will serve as host for two internationally known choreographers in November, Garbriel Masson and Zelma Badu-Younge, both of whom will provide master classes, deliver lectures and stage repertory for the MTSU Dance Theatre during their respective residencies.
“All master classes and lectures by Masson and Badu-Younge are open for public attendance and participation,” said Kim Neal Nofsinger, director of MTSU’s dance program.
Masson will be in residence Nov. 9-13, and during that time, he will choreograph a new work for MTSU dance faculty members Nofsinger and Marsha Tardy, who will premiere in the piece during the annual “Fall Dance Concert” on Nov. 30-Dec. 2.
With a varied career as a performer, choreographer and teacher that spans 20 years, Masson has toured the world in the companies of Hannah Kahn, Rosalind Newman, Lucinda Childs and Doug Varone. Since 1989, he has choreographed more than 25 pieces for repertory and university dance companies and was artistic director of his own company, Gabriel Masson Dance, for which he created a critically acclaimed group of dance titled the “Human Series, Part I-IV.”
Additionally, Nofsinger, who serves as director of dance at MTSU, said Masson “has also choreographed and directed two films with differently-abled dancer Hamel Bloom”— namely, “Almost Together” and “Family: Portrait.”
With an international reputation as a teacher, Masson has taught and performed at festivals worldwide including the American Dance Festival, U.S., Korea, the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland and the San Biennial in Brazil. He is on rotating faculty of several prestigious dance festivals in the U.S., including the Bates Dance Festival.
After receiving a master of fine arts degree from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Masson served on its faculty from 1990 to 1995 and from 1997 to 2001. He also served as guest artist at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
Guest artist Badu-Younge will be in residence at MTSU on Nov. 15-21. During her residency, she will deliver a free and open lecture titled “Ewe Culture as Expressed in Ghana, West Africa: From the Village to the Stage to the West” at 9:10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 17, in the Honors College Amphitheatre. In addition, she will stage a new dance on members of MTSU Dance Theatre for performance during the spring semester.
Badu-Younge, who has visited MTSU previously, holds a B.F.A. in contemporary dance and choreography (Concordia University), an M.F.A. in dance ethnology (York University) and a Ph.D. in integrated studies in education (McGill University). Her research for both the M.F.A. thesis, "Atsiagbekor: Documentation of an Ewe Dance Form" and the Ph.D. thesis, "Ewe Culture as Expressed in Ghana West Africa Through Adzogbo Dance Ceremony: A Foundation for the Development of Interactive Multimedia Educational Materia,” took her to West Africa, where she studied the music and dances of Ghana.
Badu-Younge's most recent activities include teaching and performing in Taipei at the Taiwan University of the Arts and in Seoul, South Korea, at the World Cup Celebration with Azaguno, a newly formed African drumming and dance company that she founded and directed with Dr. Paschal Younge.
For additional information on either artists’ residency, please contact Nofsinger via e-mail at nofsinge@mtsu.edu.


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