Arts in Education
Dallas Black Dance Theatre has a history of arts education excellence. Our arts-in-education residencies and outreach programs are designed to build critical thinking skills, connect youth to themselves and their own culture, and to invigorate the educational process by building connections between the construction and execution of dance as an art form and traditional learning techniques. Each year DBDT exposes over 20,000 DISD school children to the dance forms of ballet, modern, jazz, hip-hop and African dance. An additional 20,000 students share DBDT in this experience nationally and internationally.
Bodies in Motion – Youth Residency
Successful bodies are always in motion. DBDT’s Bodies in Motion Program uses dance as a medium to encourage students to make good choices towards a healthy/active lifestyle while developing important life skills for a successful future. Focused on childhood obesity, the 6-week residency encourages youth and teens to be active through dance in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The curriculum stresses a healthy warm-up for muscles, injury prevention, good nutrition, and the importance of breathing and staying hydrated. In addition, students develop creativity, positive self-esteem, and problem-solving skills for a healthy mind, too.
Dance Integration – Youth Residency
Dance your way to an A+ on your next math test! Working with the classroom teacher, DBDT’s Neiman Marcus Group Lead Outreach Teacher designs a 6-week residency that addresses a specific academic challenge in math, science, or social studies through dance. The program offers an alternative approach to learning that engages students mentally, physically, and socially. They discover the practical applications of abstract concepts which make learning relatable, engaging, and fun!
Student Matinee Performances
A 60-minute crash course in “what is dance?” this lecture-demonstration introduces students to ballet, modern, and jazz dance. DBDT directors share the history and differences between each technique while the dancers demonstrate on stage. Students learn how dance progresses from simple steps to full choreography by watching excerpts from the company’s repertoire. Afterward, the dancers introduce themselves and their artistic background and the students have an opportunity to ask questions. Now it is time for the students to dance! DBDT directors lead the students through a dance combination of simple hand gestures and clapping from their seats. Just like the dancers, the students learn to master the phrase through attentiveness and practice.
Student Matinees are provided annually in conjunction with DBDT’s Cultural Awareness (February) at the Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre and DBDT: Encore!’s Rising Excellence (April) at the Moody Performance Hall. Each school is provided with educational study guides for teachers and performance programs and souvenir bookmarks for students to enhance the performance experience.
Photo by Richard W. Rodriguez