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American College Dance Festival Association:

“Bridging Paths”

By Neguif Angeles
On March 16, 2012

The American College Dance Festival Association (ACDFA) was hosted at Texas A&M International University (TAMIU), from Tuesday February 28 through Saturday March 3.  Brought together from the South-Central region, Florida, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas this annual dance conference took place at  TAMIU, hosted by, Chair of Fine and Performing Arts, Bede Leyendecker,  . This conference supports dance in higher education through a regional conference that includes, workshops, performances and an adjudication panel.

The American College Dance Festival Association brought over 500 dancers from these regions.Throughout the course of the week, dancers had the opportunity to engage in master classes taught by instructors from around the country. Students were exposed to different dance techniques and teaching methods. Dancers also had the opportunity to practice advanced and intermediate Ballet, ranging from classical and contemporary. In master classes, dancers,experienmced different aspects of modern dance, and the difference in the kinesthetic movement that the techniques had to offer.  In addition, classes like Spanish dance, Bollywood, Yoga, a variety of Jazz, and lectures about stage lighting and Dance History were taught at these daily workshops.

A variety of abilities, techniques, dance history, and appreciation for the art of dance, and understanding over its influence on society  were some of the goals of every class. The classes were formed by dancers with different experience, raging form beginner, intermediate to advanced, chosen by their respective university.  

Throughout the week, dance performances were presented by the different universities to an adjudication panel. The adjudication panel was formed by, Jeffery Bullock, Hollins University, Sabrina Castillo, Universidad Rafael Landivar in Guatemala City, Guatemala, and William Evans, State University of New York at Brockport and the Bill Evans Dance Company. During the  performances there were two goals, first to get feedback from the adjudicators, giving their insights on what they thought about their dace choreography, movement quality, and message statement etc. The next goal for the dance choreography's were being judged for an opportunity to be showcased for the second time at a Gala Dance Concert, featured the last day of the dance conference. The Gala concert is developed from a ten piece dance group which was chosen from the finest choreographys performed throughout the week; these groups got the opportunity to get further acknowledgements from the adjudication panel. The Gala concert featured multiple modern dance pieces, contemporary ballet, and a folkloric dance piece.


In conclusion to the dance conference, the participants of ACDFA were invited to a reception that followed the Gala concert which took place in the TAMIU Student Center Ball Room. The reception offered the participants a Mexican dinner buffet, "aguas frescas" or also known as natural flavored water, and traditional Mexican desserts like churros and flan. The dancers did not stay long in their seats, since they got up and danced the rest of the evening  to the beat of a live band.  

For More information on ACDFA you can visit the official website at

Furthermore, you can also find more information about this event on the follow up stories published on this website, including articles, American College Dance Festival Association, and "For Kristine: A Family Diary."

(You can reach Neguif Angeles at,

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