JIS News

Some 40 students from the Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale were recently introduced to the techniques of Caribbean dance, at a workshop conducted by Barry Moncrieffe, artistic director of the National Dance Theatre Company (NDTC).
The workshop, held at the school, comprised two hour-long sessions, which afforded the students of the school’s Performing Arts Center the chance to learn, explore and experience Caribbean movement, which included African themes.
Mr. Moncrieffe, who was accompanied by master drummer Henry Miller, was part of a 45-member troupe from the NDTC, which a day later, performed to a sold out audience at the Broward Center Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale.
Dillard’s dance teacher, Josee Garant, said that the high school seniors had benefited tremendously from the sessions, noting that the experience would help them to become better dancers.
While the workshop was part of the school’s Black History Month celebration, it was also in keeping with the school’s dance curriculum where guest choreographers are often invited to teach the students new techniques. These sessions, Ms. Garant said, were aimed at exposing the students to diverse cultures through dance.
Later in the day, the NDTC team conducted a similar lecture/demonstration in contemporary dance in America and the Caribbean at the Florida International University in Miami. Participants at that session included dance students at the intermediate and advanced levels, choreographers, artistic directors, educators and dance critics.