Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company's Educational Program annually reaches students and teachers with between 500 and 600 student and/or teacher instructional hours in over 150 traditional and charter schools. Many of the students and teachers served are from Title I schools.
Step Lively residencies are conducted annually in six, select elementary schools where the Company offers an in-depth experience over the course of two weeks, including an interactive lecture demonstration, creative movement classes and a peer-to-peer performance at the end of the residency. A Parent/Child Night and a Teacher Workshop are offered and scheduled at a time convenient for each school. All students and their teachers are later invited to the annual children's show at the Capitol Theatre.
The interactive lecture-demonstration is taken to schools outside of a full residency. Our education director narrates the lecture-demonstration while our dancers perform excerpts from the Company's repertory to illustrate dance principles.
Rural Touring includes the lecture-demonstration as the centerpiece. The two-weeks of touring takes dance education to sparsely populated areas of the state. When time permits, the lecture-demonstration is followed by workshops for teachers and/or creative movement classes for students.
The Children's Show, in many ways, functions as the culmination of our education program. Over 8,000 students and their teachers arrive at the Capitol Theatre as critic-patrons of the dance art form with which they have become familiar. For many of these children, this is the first opportunity they have had to attend a live performing arts event in a professional venue. All 8,000 attend these performances free of charge.
Step Up and Step Out programming is offered to the aspiring professional dancer who attends high school. In Step Up, approximately 30 students are accepted by audition into a yearlong program to study regularly with one of our professional dancers. Step Out brings our professional dancers into six select high schools to choreograph an original work with the high school dance company. The new work is later performed in the dance company concert for parents and peers.
Free matinees of the Company's shows are made available to junior high/middle school and high school students throughout the year. Nearly 1,200 students are invited free of charge to see the Company's diverse repertory as well as reconstructions of works by National Treasure Alwin Nikolais each year. In addition, this same population is welcome at any opening night show during the season for as little as $5 per ticket.
Workshops: The 2-week Move-it Summer Workshop is an opportunity for aspiring dancers, semi-professional dancers/choreographers to come together for classes in technique, improvisation, choreography, ethnic dance forms and other related subject. Running concurrently with this workshop is a 1-week Teachers Workshop designed for practicing or aspiring teachers to improve their teaching skills and get ideas and inspiration from others in their field. This workshop allows teachers to be immersed in a rich learning environment with other dancers, while spending quality time sharing experiences related to the Utah State Core Curriculum in dance. A 1-day Infinity Workshop in January is designed for K-6 classroom teachers as well as middle, junior high and high school dance teachers. The workshop uses the Children's Show at the Capitol Theatre as the curriculum content and through classes in technique, improvisation and choreography, plus attendance at the Children's Show, a teacher can earn seven re-licensure points. Three 2-day Young Dancer Workshops are designed specifically for middle and high school dancers, offering a broad variety of dance forms. The workshop provides an incredible opportunity for young people to interact with and learn from the Ririe-Woodbury Dancers.
Step-Hop-Jump provided extracurricular dance classes for children ages 4 to 12. Step-Hop-Jump enrolls many students who are considered "at-risk." Classes are held on site and in the community and are taught by company members and our Education Director Gigi Arrington.