On Saturday, June 13, 114 middle school students from around Miami-Dade County came to the Adrienne Arsht Center to interview for one of the 85 spaces available for the first AileyCamp Miami, a summer day camp founded by the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation which will be offered for the first time in Miami this summer. The four-week camp, which is completely free to participants and does not require any formal dance training, features ballet, jazz, modern and West African dance classes as well as classes in creative communication and personal development. Designed to help students make a successful transition to high school, the programming focuses on building self-esteem, encouraging creative thinking, and supporting exploration of the arts through cooperative dance activities.
Young hopefuls arrived at 9:30 a.m. to register in the lobby of the Center’s John S. and James L. Knight Concert Hall. At 10 a.m. sharp, the first group of students was lead to the Peacock Education Center to get things started with a movement activity lead by Natasha DeVaughn-Rigby, the camp’s new director. From there, each student was escorted to a one-on-one interview conducted by a panel of specially selected members of the Adrienne Arsht Center community who have experience working with children, including representatives from Miami-Dade County Public Schools, an Adrienne Arsht Center Board member, and some of the Adrienne Arsht Center’s most dedicated volunteers. Ms. DeVaughn-Rigby and Nasha Thomas-Schmitt (AileyCamp’s National Director) represented the AileyCamp’s national office and rounded out the group of interviewers. The 85 students who were selected to participate have been notified by mail.
AileyCamp Miami will run from July 13 to August 7 with a final performance in the Knight Concert Hall on Saturday, August 8. The stage will come to life with an original production presented by the 85 students who will have called the Adrienne Arsht Center’s AileyCamp their summer home.
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