In the Studio with Yauri: 3 Pieces of Advice from Dance Scholar & Professor of Dance Elizabeth McPherson

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Sometimes when you get a good content idea, you just know it. This month, I sought out to interview movers and shakers in the field of dance who are by all means, living dance. Art and culture have their way of being one, and perhaps only a handful can easily speak this language through the medium of dance and movement. Capturing stories on this platform exhibits the many different paths we often think are straight. Straight, but often which come with turns, twists, hills and vallys and of course the will of ourselves making everything look easy and quite simplistic.  Want to be inspired? Do read on.

The dancer’s journey is not easy, but it is fulfilling and gratifying. Whichever part of the journey we are travelling. I am thinking about the dancer in Benjamin Button. The way in which she lived her life and moved through the world. Though it was not until the end of the film when she executed the endless pirouettes that her life all made sense to the viewer, throughout the film however, there were moments that defined her and reinforced who she was. There were moments when she defined herself. We just have to listen. I think of the words of Carmen de Lavallade at 85 years old which days ago only graced ears within the audible space in New York City. We just have to listen. Or the talk at Summer Stage moderated by Brenda Dixon Gottschild about the life and journey of someone we have learned about and gotten to know all too well.  Misty Copeland. We are watching it all play out. We are all a part of this history. We just have to listen. To ourselves, to what is around us. What is your story? Take a moment and think about it.  And then make your story, your own.

To kick off the In the Studio with Yauri Series – a collection of articles, video and audio clips exploring the lives and journeys of dancers, dance educators and dance historians who tell their stories through words, photos and gesture – we feature the work and story of Elizabeth McPherson, dance scholar and professor of dance at Montclair State University and creator of the new MFA program. McPherson earned her BFA in dance from Juilliard years ago, a part of her journey as a young dancer in NYC which only fueled her destiny as an artist scholar. Stay tuned to hear more about her story in this upcoming series and check out these three pieces of advice for dancers on a dancer’s journey she shares below:

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About Yauri Dalencour

Yauri is a professional dancer, dance archivist and educator. She has run an arts education consultancy she founded almost ten years ago and is now head of product and brand ambassador at Dancetime Publications. Yauri’s forte as a dance journalist is writing short insightful and reflective posts as well as featured articles featuring guests and experts.

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