Friedman is a world-renowned contemporary dancer and the artistic director of the Mountain View-based Lively Foundation. She won the first Selma Jeanne Cohen International Award for Dance Scholarship granted by the Fulbright Association in 2000. She has performed around the world, from India to Egypt, Sri Lanka to Russia. Friedman called this year's festival an "intensive learning experience" and said that it was centered around three primary goals: to allow dancers to dance; to mix people of all ages and skill levels; and to involve the greater community and provide a public benefit by way of the final performance.
Friedman was adamant about her belief that dancers need to dance. She has performed extensively in Europe, and from her experience, European dancers perform and practice almost all the time. Friedman said she is hoping to bring the European "ethos" of dance to the International Dance Festival. "If you perform more, you perform better," she said.
The festival is not only for serious dancers. People of all different levels are invited to learn something new, she said. The Full Day of Dance, on Aug. 24, is open to all ages and levels, while the week-long workshop is designed for intermediate to advanced dancers.
"When I made up the full day of dance idea," Friedman said, "I wanted to offer all kinds of dance for all ages." The Full Day of Dance includes a Pilates mat class taught by Amity Johnson; contemporary dance taught by Friedman; tap dance with Audreyanne Delgado-Covarrubias; Polish folk dance with Christina Smolen; and the AXIS Dance Co. workshop, taught by AXIS company dancers, some of whom are disabled.
"Each of these dancer/teachers is truly a master teacher," Friedman said.
The workshop is taught entirely by Friedman and consists of contemporary technique and repertory classes in the morning, and improvisation and composition classes in the afternoon. The workshop is intended for more serious dancers who want to tighten up their technique, learn new repertory, and create and compose their own routines.
Friedman's passion for the festival is evident. The festival is all about involving the greater community, so that it may enjoy and broaden its appreciation of dance, she said. The week-long festival will culminate in a concert at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 25, at Pioneer Park, at Church and Franklin streets in Mountain View. Dancers will perform the repertory they learn during the week plus their own site-specific installations outdoors in the park. They will also have the opportunity to perform alongside well-known dance professionals, she said.
For more information, contact The Lively Foundation at 650-969-4110 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. To view the schedule and register for classes, go to livelyfoundation.org. Concert tickets are $12 for general admission, and $10 for those over age 65 or under age 10. Sponsor Tickets are available for $25 or more and offer preferred seating. Classes cost $325 for the week-longworkshop; $25 for a single class, and $80 for five classes on the Full Day of Dance. All dance classes meet at the Mountain View Masonic Lodge, 890 Church Street, Mountain View.
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