Master Class Dance Workshops Open to Students, Community

by Lauren Somers

Local dance enthusiasts, students and novices alike are invited to participate in either or both free master classes at Montgomery County Community College: one led by award-winning artistic director, choreographer and instructor David Dorfman on Friday, Jan. 17, and the other by the internationally renowned Ballet Hispanico on Friday, March 7. Both master classes will be held 1:30 to 3 p.m. in the College’s Physical Education Center dance studio, 595 Cathcart Road, Blue Bell. To register, contact Dr. Melinda Copel at or 215-641-6346.

In collaboration with its Lively Arts series and Department of Cultural Affairs, the College is offering these accessible master classes in an effort to engage the community and inspire people of all ages and abilities to explore their creative expression through dance. Throughout the year, students can pursue an associate degree in dance or take courses (open to all, regardless of major) in ballet, modern dance, jazz, hip hop, improvisation, composition, repertory, performance ensemble, dance wellness and dance history.

Since its founding in 1985, the David Dorfman Dance ensemble has performed extensively throughout North and South America, the United Kingdom and Europe. For the past seven years it has been company-in-residence at Connecticut College, where Dorfman teaches and serves as dance department chair. A native Chicagoan who has toured internationally as a performer, Dorfman has been honored with several fellowships, choreography awards and commissions. His community-based projects continue to advance his goal to “get the whole world dancing.”

Established 42 years ago, Ballet Hispanico is recognized as America’s leading Latino dance organization. Through its professional company, school and outreach programs, Ballet Hispanico preserves Latino culture, celebrates the dynamic aesthetics of the Hispanic diaspora and builds new avenues of cultural dialogue while sharing the joy of dance with all communities.

Both dance companies are scheduled for full-length performances in the College’s Science Center Theater on the day following their respective master classes. David Dorfman Dance will perform “Come, and Back Again,” a poetic exploration of life’s messiness, mortality and hope inspired by the legendary Patti Smith and singer-songwriter Benjamin Smoke, on Jan. 18 at 8 p.m. Ballet Hispanico will present Afro-Caribbean, Spanish dance, modern dance and folkloric dances of the Americas in two performances on March 7 at 10:30 a.m. for youth and on March 8 for general audiences. Other dance performers in this year’s Lively Arts season include the August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble on Feb. 21-22. 

The master classes are made possible by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation.

For tickets and more information about these and other Lively Arts performances, visit or call 215-641-6518—and follow “Destination Arts” at Montgomery County Community College on Facebook at

Ballet Hispanic will host a free Master Dance class at MCCC on March 7.

Ballet Hispanic will host a free Master Dance class at MCCC on March 7.

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