My name is Anja Young and I am interning with the DragonFly Dance Experiment. I am currently studying dance at Towson University. My dance goals in life are to become a professional dancer and own a successful dance studio. Interning with DDE gives me the opportunities to be around amazing dancers who inspire me to work even harder in my own dance life.
The DDE ladies have amazing relationships with one another. I am thankful that they allow me to be a part of their bond. The artistic director, Megan Morse Jan has a unique individual bond with all of her dancers. She is their boss, coach, friend, cheerleader, mentor, and cares about them.
The DDE ladies have been working hard on the upcoming piece for the Louder than Words event that will be held Monday June 27, 2011 6-10pm at Children’s Theater of Annapolis. I look forward to bring you updates on the DDE dancers throughout the summer.
May is turning out to be an incredible month for the Dragonflies! On the heels of our very successful gala event, Exhibit: Where Dance and Art Meet at Atlantic Arts Inc., last month, we are taking May by storm. The month started with a performance at Annapolis High School's annual dance performance where we shared the stage with amazing young dancers from Anne Arundel County. Then, joined by DDE guest artist Stephanie Yezek, artistic director Megan Morse Jans made an appearance in "A Moving Mission" a benefit concert for Wounded Warriors produced by Design in Motion Dance Studio
. We are looking forward to "Thread" at Creative Alliance in Baltimore next weekend, Friday May 27th 8pm! The show will feature our newest work Thread, one of our signature works Like a Peach, and work by Stephanie Yezek, Nicole McClam and a special guest performance by Tommy Parlon. Photo by Pam Bolig
This season instead of hosting an annual fundraising event, Dragonfly Dance Experiment will be presenting a new works and hosting a wine and cheese reception at the exquisite Atlantic Arts Inc. gallery in Annapolis, MD. There will be an opportunity to bid on donated items via a silent auction in order to generate funds to support the continued efforts to bring dance the community through free performances, dance education and other events throughout the year.
You can expect an evening full of work performed by Dragonfly Dance Experiment and other artists, exhibits by gallery artists on display, delicious food donated from Pastry Underground and exceptional items up for auction. We are excited for the opportunity to meet and greet with community members and supporters of the arts who make what we do possible.
In order to continue the theme of community, all silent auction items were donated Marylanders and local businesses owned by friends and associates of DDE. We support local business and business owners and are so thrilled to have this forum to showcase their products and services.
Silent Auction Items include: Yoga Class Card from Prana Studio located in Annapolis, MD
Complimentary Private Pilates Session from Kimmotion Pilates in Crofton, MD
Health Coaching Services from Health Now, LLC
$50 Gift Card from the Freedom Bakery in Severna Park, MD
Professional Photography Session by Mandy Sroka
Jewelry from M.A.D. Genie Designs valued at $350
Eco-Armour Personal Shaving Foam Set
Handbag from the Collection of Christian Siriano
Hat and Gift Card from Hats in the Belfry in Annapolis, MD
Arbonne Gift Basket
Skin Care from Rodin and Fields worth $250
Efforts from many members of the community have made this event a reality. Contributors will be performing, donating items and donating their time, make it all possible. This is an event you will not want to miss. Get your tickets today!
A DragonFly welcome to one of our newest dancers!
Jessica Gallew comes to Dragonfly with experience in dance she has acquired from all across the country. She grew up in Philadelphia, PA where she studied dance at the Philadelphia Creative and Performing Arts High school. She also trained at Philadanco and Koresh Dance Company, two of the most prominent dance organizations in Philadelphia, while she was still in high school. Jessica received a Bachelors of Arts degree with a Jazz Contemporary and Modern Dance Concentration from Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Pa and has studied many styles of dance including Ballet, Modern, Jazz, Hip Hop, Contemporary, Clogging, Dunham, African, Character and Tap. Jessica owned her own dance studio/company in Kansas, where she worked behind the scene directing and teaching.
Although Jessica loves all styles of dance, her favorite style to dance is Contemporary. Jessica says of this style that, “It gives the choreographer and the dancer a wide area to create such unique movement, that it is always evolving. Every dancer has their own "personal" movement. I believe contemporary style dance allows us as dancers to explore that to its fullest.” And, Jessica would know! She continues to work as a teacher of dance in Easton, MD and is a yoga alliance certified yoga teacher.
Jessica was fortunate to get some great advice from an amazing performer at the young age of 13, when she was still a young dancer. She met Chita Rivera when her parents took her to see her perform in Atlantic City, NJ. At the time she didn't realize who Chita Rivera was and what she meant to the dance world, but she knew she was someone special. After her show, she met Miss Rivera and will never forget the words of wisdom shared that day. “Honey, this business is tough and it takes a strong person to get thru it, I advise you when that day comes, take no prisoners, and stay true to yourself." Those words will always stay will her and remind her to keep trying and never give up.
Jessica now resides in Stevensville, MD with her husband of five years and her beautiful son who will be one in January. When she is not being a full time super-mom, she enjoys running, biking, hiking, camping, scrapbooking, making jewelry, and practice yoga. Family is very important to Jessica. She is very thankful for her supporting and loving parents and sister who believed in her and encouraged her to continue, while she followed her dreams of being a dancer.
Jessica would like to say:
“Thank you to Megan Morse Jans for giving me many opportunities as a dancer and as a teacher since moving to the area. I am so grateful! I am so very thrilled to be apart of DDE and to be dancing along side these very beautiful and talented women.”
This performing season has been an incredible experience for everyone involved with DragonFly. It was a season of firsts. The first for our newly established board of trustees, the first fundraiser we produced, and the first full length concert with our new repertoire. We collaborated with each other as well as other fabulous artists and we danced our hearts out in the studio as well as on stage. By the time we completed our last performance of the season on July 1, we were thoroughly proud of ourselves as well as thoroughly exhausted.
For the rest of the summer, we will be spending time much needed time in the studio doing what we absolutely love to do...create :o). The Thread project, which we have been working on for almost a year has been a really special experience. Its consisted of several stages including a performance of the original piece by Annapolis High School and a collaboration with the AACC Symphony Orchestra. We are re-working the piece with different music, and digging a bit more into the motifs and themes of the dance. Its truly a luxury to have this time together. We've been under a lot of pressure to complete work for performances and now that we don't have the pressure of a deadline, its amazing what is coming to light in the studio. The piece is shaping itself differently, revealing new and different moments and truly becoming something that we love. Here is a sneak peak of some of the work that's been happening in the studio over the past several weeks.
Yesterday was a beautiful 90 plus degree day downtown Annapolis. The sun was high and scorching, the ground sizzled like hot sand and a breeze blew every half hour. It was a beautiful day for dance.
Although Mother Nature didn’t change her plans to give us a nice 75 degree day, at least she didn’t rain on us! Dragonfly Dance Experiment had a wonderful performance at the City Docks in Annapolis.
We performed an hour show to a very warm audience (pun intended). The show started with a duet, “Before Bed” choreographed by Dragonfly’s director, Megan Morse Jans and guest choreographer, Stephanie Yezek. Jans and Yezek recently performed the piece at the Oxford Fringe Festival and the British influence was a light hearted and fun start the show. Next to perform a self-choreographed solo was Dragonfly, Sarah Keller. The feeling of falling in love was represented by her sweet choreography that melted the hearts of our audience. Following was the Dragonfly premier of “Build, Run, Speak” a piece choreographed by guest artist, Becky Radway, artistic director of Becky Radway Dance Projects based in New York, New York. The three section piece performed by six of the Dragonflies is based around the creation of a working machine. Remember, “If you build it, he will come.”? Well, we built it and the audience flocked to see.
The second half of the show included some Dragonfly favorites and a new duet. “In Her Hands” choreographed by guest artist Stephanie Yezek was performed by four Dragonflies. This intense performance of powerful movement was a great addition to the works presented at the Docks. Dancers jumping for their lives as it would seem, didn’t give up even in the heat. To cool things off (and not in a temperature sense) a duet featuring Jillian Barber, Dragonfly Rehearsal Director and Megan Morse Jans was a light hearted petite allegro. The dancers seemed to be playing a bit of cat and mouse as they tried to one up each other in a friendly and delicately choreographed competition. It was a fun piece that brought smiles to the glowing (hopefully sunblocked) faces of our audience. Closing the show was “Like a Peach” a sweet and thoughtful piece in Dragonfly’s repertoire. The piece represents the challenges of adapting to mother-hood and closed the show by putting the baby to bed.
Dock Side Dance was yet again a fantastic evening of dance offered to a wonderful community of supporters. Anyone who would sit on the 100 degree brick for an hour is a lover of dance and we are so very thankful for that! Next year bring your beach umbrellas because we will be there shine or shine!
Welcome to Summer 2010 with DDE! Thanks to the hard work of the dancers, board and all of the contributors to our company we are able to bring the second annual Dock Side Dance to the community for FREE. Please join us on Sunday June 13 (rain date Sunday June 20) at 5pm at the Campbell Stage on the City Docks of Annapolis. We have a very exciting program including new works by Artistic Director Megan Morse Jans as well as Artistic Contributor Stephanie Yezek, the Manhattan based dance artist Becky Radway, a new solo choreographed and danced by DDE dancer Sarah Keller and a new collaboration between rehearsal director Jillian Barber and Megan Morse Jans. For more information about the performance please check out the events section of our website or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
DragonFly has been commissioned to create a new work in collaboration with the AACC Symphony Orchestra. "Thread" will be performed to a live rendition of Ravel's Bolero on July 1st at the Celebration of the Arts performance at the Pascal Center for Performing Arts. Truly a performance not to be missed!
Also, don't forget to register for our upcoming Dance Repertoire Workshop that is part of the Kids In College program at AACC. The two week workshop will include technique, rehearsal, discussion on dance related issues as well as a performance.
We are looking forward to a tremendous summer of dance! See you there!
Janet Parker joined Dragonfly in April of 2009 and brings an extensive background in dance and fitness. Janet grew up studying Ceccetti Ballet in Springfield, OH and took exams through level six by age 15. She studied jazz with Claude Thompson and Michael Owens at Hamas Dance Space in Studio City, CA, interned at Broadway Dance Center in New York City and attended Kent State University in Ohio. Janet graduated from KSU with a BFA in dance performance.
Janet has danced with numerous dances companies and ensembles including, Leaven – Liturgical Dance Company, Kent Dance Ensemble, Loreal Professional, Coastal Carolina Center for Performing Arts and Kathy Harty Gray Dance Theatre. She enjoys many styles of dance and appreciates the challenges that are unique to each style. She enjoys the athleticism, emotion, and intricacies of modern movement, but also highly values the strength and discipline that ballet inspires. Her favorite style to dance and watch is probably jazz dance. While interning at Broadway Dance Center, Janet, especially loved dancing with David Marquez, Michelle Barber, and Pilates.
Janet recognizes her Dad as her inspiration; he did what he loved and was happy to do it. Janet is very passionate about what she does and brings a great energy to the studio when rehearsing with Dragonfly. During the time not spent with Dragonfly, she teaches fitness classes and works as a certified personal trainer. And when she is not getting people in shape, she loves to take heath and fitness classes. Janet is extremely dedicated to everything she does.
For many dancers, there is specific performance that they can recall as impactful to their dance life. For Janet that performance was the first time she saw the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre. They performed Revelations and Janet was moved to tears because the movement was so beautiful.
Today, Janet resides in Alexandria, Virginia with her husband, Max, and their “little boy”, a beagle named Jack. And yes, she drives all of the way from Northern Virginia to be a part of Dragonfly.
Janet would like to thank:
“My mom for being such a great source of strength and faith. My amazing and supportive husband Max. Without his love and support this would not be possible.”
Get Excited! DragonFly Dance Experiment is performing this coming Thursday! We are honored to have been asked to perform in the Severn School Dance Company’s Spring Dance Concert. Severn School’s dance company is a student run company in its fourth year. Severn students create choreography, direct rehearsals, manage show production and perform. This season the company’s nine members (their largest group to date) have put together a collaborative concert including performances by the Severn Dance Company, the Severn Step Club and Severn dance classes. They have invited guests including DragonFly Dance Experiment, Essenza, Maryland Performing Arts Company, Severna Park High School, SPARK, Rohanna Dance Productions and American Dance and Fitness. This is sure to be an evening celebrating dance in many forms and we hope you can join us.
If you missed the Rhapsody show or simply loved our performance of “Like a Peach”, this is a great opportunity to see us perform.
Severn School's Price Auditorium
201 Water Street
Severna Park, MD 21146
Thursday, April 29, 2010
7:00pm, $5 general admission
Coming soon, new photos of the Dragonflies!! This past Saturday DDE was photographed by the talented Mandy Sroka. We had a great time during the photo-shoot as you can tell from our super fun group picture.
BARE travels abroad to Oxford, England to present an evening-length work of duets and solos at the Burton Taylor Studio 31st March - 3rd April, 2010, 18:30-19:30. Joining Stephanie Yezek across the pond will be Renee Brozic-Barger and Megan Morse Jans. Presenting original and collaborative choreography, Between Me and You examines closely the ups and downs of relationships in an intimate black-box setting. Link. The first week of April, DDE’s very own artistic director performed at the Oxford Fringe Festival, oxfringe 2010, with BAREdance. Dragonfly guest choreographer, Stephanie Yezek, is an original choreographer of BARE, a collaborative contemporary dance project that was originally commissioned by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Under the direction of Yezek, BARE performed an evening length work, Between You and Me, choreographed collaboratively by the performers including Yezek herself, DDE's Megan Morse Jans and HCC Dance Coordinator, Renee Brozic Barger. The work was inspired by individuals struggling to maintain their identity in and out of reletionships. The work was extremely well received by audiences and critics.
Fringe Review writes of Megan Morse Jans:
A breath of fresh air in the now increasingly disturbing evening is ‘Like a Peach’. The music from Alison Krauss and Robert Plant lifted the mood as the technically powerful Megan Morse Jans, blessed with a wonderfully expressive face, connected strongly with the audience. So close were we to the performance in this intimate venue, we could feel her every emotion and sense her every breath. Link.
David Bellan of the Oxford Times:
Barger’s After Dinner is danced by Jans and Yezek, the former an innocent, the latter a sophisticate. Is this the beginning of a seduction or a slowly developing estrangement? It’s ambiguous and quite dark, intriguing and satisfying. Link.
oxfringe 2010 was a wonderful experience for all of the BARE performers. A great trip oversees, wonderfully received performances and a good time had by all.