The Power of 'One's Voice': Exploring Social and Political Issues through Dance Education

Nichole Ortega,
Doris A. Trujillo
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"The flapping of a single butterfly's wing today produces a tiny change in the state of the atmosphere. Over a period of time, what the atmosphere actually does diverges from what it would have done. So,in a month's time, a tornado that would have devastated the Indonesian coast doesn't happen. Or maybe one that wasn't going to happen, does." (Ian Stewart, Does God Play Dice? The Mathematics of Chaos, pg. 141)

Does "One's Voice" have potential to impact others? What does the Theory of Chaos have to do with the creative process and the potential for change? How do we as artists and dance educators create and present works that move our students and audiences to action? This workshop will explore these questions and the various approaches used in the classroom setting in the creation of social or political dance works. Through improvisational experiences and compositional problems participants will investigate movement that supports and expresses concepts in a chosen political or social arena. Imagery, symbolism, text, and montage will be presented and utilized as vehicles for creating structure and meaning about current issues in our society. The works of postmodern dance theater choreographers will provide the foundational springboard and model to teach and create from.

Keywords: Social Change, Political Activism, Dance Education
Stream: Art and Human Rights
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
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Nichole Ortega

Assistant Professor of Dance, Department of Dance, Utah Valley State College
Orem, Utah, USA

From 1984 – 1990 Nichole trained with Jacqueline P. College as a member and soloist with Utah Regional Ballet. She received a BS degree in Health Education and Dance Education at Brigham Young University in 1994. For ten years, Nichole worked as the modern dance educator and Dance Company Director at Payson High School in Payson, Utah. During this time she earned a MA degree in Dance at California State University, Long Beach. Currently Nichole is an Assistant Professor at Utah Valley State College, where she teaches ballet, modern, and other core courses.
She is an active member of Utah Dance Education Organization and of the National Dance Education Organization, is the Arts Representative for the Utah Academy of Science, Arts, and Letters, and is the Utah State Office of Education High School Dance Endorsment Representative.

Doris A. Trujillo

Assistant Professor, Department of Dance, Utah Valley State College
Orem, Utah, USA

Doris Hudson-Trujillo an artistic/educator, has taught, performed, and choreographed nationally and internationally in many varied capacities. She received her BFA in Modern Dance from the Universtiy of Utah and her MA in Dance from Brigham Young University. She serves as a consultant to the Utah State Office of Education and has performed residencies throughout the state for the Utah Arts Council's Artist In Education Program. Doris performed internationally as a memeber of the Ririe Woodbury Dance Company and has presented works on their Independent Artist Series. She was the Co-Aritstic director of Contemporary DANCEWORKS. Doris is currently an Assistant Professor at Utah Valley State College and serves on the board of the Utah Dance Education Oraganization.

Ref: A06P0383