Hofstra University’s Cultural Center and Dance Program will present EarthBeat!, a performance of dances from around the world by professional dance and music company The Vanaver Caravan on Friday, Sept. 25 from 2:20 to 4 pm in the John Cranford Adams Playhouse, South Campus. Admission is free and open to the public.
“EarthBeat! is a journey of music and dance in which you can experience the rhythms, sounds, colors, and life of this beautiful planet,” said Livia Vanaver, artistic director of the Vanaver Caravan. She co-founded the company with her husband, Bill Vanaver, and has taught and performed internationally for more than 40 years.
The dance and live music presentation focuses on the rhythms that evolved from different cultural groups to express their need to harmonize with the earth. It includes French Canadian and Irish step dance, salsa, Appalachian clogging, West African harvest dance, South African gumboot dance, Japanese taiko drumming, Kurdish line dance, and Chinese ribbon dance, as well as dances from India, Brazil, Israel, and Spain. Body percussion and stomp dances will also be featured, as well as a Q&A session.
“Livia brings an enormous amount of experience in dance, music, and culture from all across the United States and the world,” said Hofstra Dance Program Director Rachel List, who danced with the Vanaver Caravan for many years. “This concert will be of great interest across a variety of disciplines at Hofstra.”
Vanaver is also teaching two courses on campus this semester: Folk and Square Dance, a requirement for dance education and physical education majors, as well as a Junior Repertory class, in which she is preparing students to perform an original piece of choreography for the Fall Faculty Dance Concert on Nov. 19-22.
“The students here at Hofstra are very eager and open for new things,” she said. “I love teaching young people and conveying the idea that we learn through dance.”
Additional funding for the show was provided by the New York State Council on the Arts Dance Program.
photo credit: Lois Greenfield, 2007 /Senegalese “Mama” Spirit Dance / Dancer: Fode Sissoko