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Sue Bush
More articles from Sue Bush

Berkshire Dance Theatre to Perform “8 Days A Week”

By Susan Bush
12:00AM / Wednesday, June 08, 2005

The Berkshire Dance Theatre will present "8 Days A Week" beginning June 17.
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Adams – The staccato sound of tap shoes, the grace of pirouettes, and snappy, sleek jazz moves will find a spotlight this month during a Berkshire Dance Theatre production of “8 Days a Week.”

Tickets Now on Sale

The multi-act stage event will showcase young area dancers and numerous dance disciplines beginning Fri. June 17 at the Hoosac Valley High School. Dancers will take to the stage at 7:15 p.m. for the premiere performance and on Sat. June 18th. The final performance is scheduled to begin at 2:15 p.m. on Sun., June 19th. Advance tickets for reserved seating went on sale June 6 and are available at the dance company’s 34 Commercial St. main studio. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the door prior to each performance. Ticket information is available by calling 413-743-4645 or 802-447-8855.

Local Dancers Take the Lead

Students at all performance and skill levels will perform to a musical medley that features ballet, tap, and jazz dancing as well as creative movement. Central cast members range from 10- to 17-years-old and will share the stage with lead dancers Kasey Wooten, 17, of Adams, Jordana Dzierga, 16, of Adams, Amanda Zepka, 17, of Savoy, and Meagan Hockridge,17, of North Adams. Dzierga, Zepka, and Hockridge share the role of Natalie Octavia Day, while Wooten will perform the role of Day’s mother. Dzierga’s performance is scheduled for Friday night, Zepka is slated to perform on Saturday night, and Hockridge will dance the lead role on Sunday afternoon.

Designed and directed by Artistic Director Karyn O’Toole, the new and original production follows Day as she tries to discover what day of the week she was born. The drama and suspense escalate as Day attempts to learn what her mother already knows: is she Monday’s Child, “fair of face,” or Tuesday’s Child “full of grace?” Was she born on a Wednesday, a Thursday, and what does it all mean? The finale will be performed to live music performed by the Brave Brothers, and the drama’s conclusion is being billed as “amazing.”

Included in the large and diverse central cast are Holly Bednarz, Marie Bury, Olivia Bury, Kara Clark, Lisa Corkins, Briell Dzierga, Tessa Garcia, Sara Giroux, Chesley Gorman, Kimberlee Guettler, Nicole Holland, Alexandra Krol, Sierra McLear, Marissa Nichols, Sara O’Neil, Katelyn Parmenter, and Kaitlin Skalski, all of Adams, Kelley Burzimati, Jamee Freitag, Julianna Kronick, and Samantha Lincoln, all of Cheshire, Margaret Huang, Stephanie Marko, Komal Shah and Niralee Shah, all of North Adams, Alyssa Alimonos, Emily Silva and Grace Singleton, all of Williamstown, Ashley Mikaniewicz of Washington, Krista Slade of Stamford, Vt., and Emily Hollister of Shaftsbury, Vt..

Central cast performers will be seen in lead roles and delivering solo and “special” performances. Production choreographers include O’Toole, Ashley Girgenti, Olivia Hakes, Sylvia Logan and Amy Briggs. Carrie Saldo provided theatrical coaching and scriptwriting, while Gregory Mitchell served as technical director and score composer. Costume selection and design involved a collaborative effort spearheaded by O’Toole, Eileen Clark, and a group of energetic volunteers.

The Berkshire Dance Theatre was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1982. In addition to the main studio in Adams, the company operates satellite studios at the Pine Cobble School in Williamstown and at 331 Main St. in Bennington, Vt..

Many BDT students have furthered their dance careers, said Jessica Gwozdz, the theatre office manager.

“We have had dance students go on to start their own dance studios across the country,” she said. “Other students have gone on to major in dance at college.”

Dance Fever

The school philosophy emphasizes “we want our students to acquire a love for dance and music that will last a lifetime because we believe that dance is for everyone. We want to develop the mind and the body while we kindle the imagination, develop coordination, encourage an outgoing personality, increase balance and improve all their reflexes.”

Students range in age from 3 to over 50 years old. The dance school offers scholarships; this year, three new scholarships are the Girgenti Family Scholarship, the Berkshire Dance Theatre Essence Award, and the Berkshire Dance Theatre Leadership Award.

Additional scholarships include the Wendy Lincoln Award, the David Blondin Award, the Alec Frese Award, the Michael Harris Award, and the Ester Mirallegro Award.

Susan Bush may be reached at 802-823-9367 or by e-mail at suebush@adelphia.net.
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