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ASU's BFA Dance Launches Fundraising Effort to Perform at International Dance Conference

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Author: Hazel Scott

Release Date: Dec 06, 2017

Emerging artists and faculty members are seeking financial assistance to participate in a unique dance conference in Los Angeles.

Alabama State University’s BFA/Dance Program has been selected to perform this January in Los Angeles at the 30th Annual International Black Dance Conference and Festival. ASU participants are slated to leave Montgomery on Wednesday, Jan. 24, for the four-day event hosted by Lula Washington Dance Theatre. 

Michael Medcalf, director of BFA/Dance program, said through an adjudicated process, ASU was chosen from among a multitude of professional dance companies, organizations and schools in the U.S. and internationally.

“This is such a fantastic opportunity for our juniors and graduating seniors to showcase ASU and their talents by performing in front of agents, artistic directors of professional dance companies and prestigious summer dance programs from around the world,” Medcalf said.  “Last year, the BFA/Dance Program attended this international conference and won hearts and amazing opportunities. Well over half of the ASU student dancers who participated received offers from professional dance companies, as well as full and partial scholarships to attend summer dance programs.”

Medcalf said because a lack of funding may jeopardize students from attending this year’s conference, the BFA/Dance Program is raising money to send 22 emerging artists and faculty members to this unique dance conference and is seeking the community’s help to offset some of the cost.

“We need to provide our dance students and faculty members with hotel cost and airfare for the trip to Los Angeles from Alabama,” Medcalf said. “It would be devastating if the students are not able to attend due to lack of funding. They are committed and have raised the money to pay the conference registration fee on their own. For some of them this may be a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

Dr. Wendy R. Coleman, chair for the Department of Theatre and Dance, said ASU is amazed at the talent and dedication of the theatre and dance students.

“This invitation to perform at the prestigious International Association of Blacks in Dance conference (IABD) is an international honor,” Coleman said. “Our hope is that community will rally around us to help make this happen.”
For more than 26 years, the IABD has served a diverse, national and international membership of agents and managers, dance companies and studios, educators and educational institutions, individual artists, researchers and supporters of the dance field. As the only national black dance service organization, IABD’s programs include the annual conference and festival, essential research, communications, and advocacy that serve its members’ most pressing needs and address field-wide issues.

Here’s how to Help
Make your donations by contacting the ASU Department of Theatre and Dance at 334-6929 or email

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