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The versatility of Dance – More than just an art form!

Attempting the moves

NCF representatives Corporate Communications Specialist, Simone Codrington and Cultural Officer Dance, Alicia Payne/Hurley join in the exercise, while Lisa Cole, Senior Manager Marketing, Scotiabank looks on.

Scotiabank and the National Cultural Foundation (NCF) teamed up on Saturday, October 22, 2016 to promote the upcoming Scotiabank sponsored NIFCA Performing Arts Dance Final with a DanceFiT Session at the Sky Mall.

Dancer and Fitness Instructor, Thorn Wood of the popular Urban/Street ADL Adrenalin Dancers and Califit 246 facilitated the session.  Thorn is pursuing a Barbados Community College (BCC) Associate Degree in Dance and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) certification with a focus on Kinesiology.

The DanceFiT Session hosted by Scotiabank and the NCF, was in an effort to showcase the versatility of dance, as the Foundation focusses the lens on the ‘Power of the Arts’ to effect change in the disciplines that NIFCA represents.
Dance is more than an art form! It is a multifaceted artistic tool that can be utilised throughout the many facets of our lives, remarked Alicia Payne/Hurley, the NCF’s Cultural Officer for Dance.

Little ones

Even the little ones joined on the action as Thorn Wood demonstrated some of his Dancehall Damage Fitness moves.

On Saturday, the spotlight was on the exhilarating fusion of dance and fitness – a staple in the fitness arena for many years and becoming increasingly popular with the inclusion of soca, dancehall, hip hop and other genres.

Mrs. Payne/Hurley also brought attention to the use of dance in other aspects such as:

– Education, as a teaching tool or an optional method of reinforcement to traditional teaching techniques in Mathematics, Science, Social Studies and History to mention a few.  An area that both the officers for the Dance and Theatre disciplines have been demonstrating in recent months.

– Expressive Arts Therapy, utilising the arts including dance in an integrated way, to foster human growth, development, and healing.

– Dance/Movement Psychotherapy, using movement and dance to engage creatively in a process to further the emotional, cognitive, physical and social integration skills of the individual.  The practice of dance is highly structured and very ritualised, a key selling point for children with autism for example. Dance has the power to unlock the imagination, to empower expression and to open up the possibility of more connection with others, something crucial to children who struggle with other modes of communication.

– Finally, dance has also proven to be a good treatment for neurological conditions like Parkinsons.

Globally Scotiabank has been channelling its support in the areas of Health & Wellness and Education.  The bank’s Senior Manager, Marketing, Ms. Lisa Cole sees their continued commitment to the NIFCA Dance discipline as a perfect fit for the brand especially when considering its versatility and its ability to merge with their areas of focus.  She added that by using dance as a base, Saturday’s exercise created an energetic workout that was not only healthy, but fun.

Ms. Cole also announced their support for a special 50th Anniversary prize for the dance entry that best depicts or pays tribute to Barbados and our 50th Anniversary of Independence. This number will be chosen by the judges on the Scotiabank Dance Finals Night.

Urban/Street Demonstration

The ADL Adrenalin Group is known for their Urban/Street Dance choreography and Thorn could not end the session without a little illustration for the onlookers.

With respect to the number of entries received for this year’s competition, Mrs. Payne/Hurley noted that the NCF saw a tremendous rise in participants and a steady increase in the quality of the work presented.

The Scotiabank NIFCA Dance Final themed ‘Reflections’ continues to be one of the most popular evenings on the calendar with sold out audiences from year to year.  This year’s tickets were sold out almost two weeks ahead of the event, so if you are looking to enjoy some dance pieces you will have to take them in at the special 50th Anniversary Gala slated for November 20 at Kensington Oval.

In the interim, the upcoming night ‘Reflections’ promises to be enthralling, with 21 fantastic dance pieces being presented in genres such as African, Caribbean Folk, Contemporary, Ballroom and Latin, Praise Dance and Street Dance!

Saturday’s DanceFiT instructor, Thorn Wood will be a part of the 2016/2017 Dance Fest Champion and 2013 NIFCA silver awarded ADL Adrenaline Dancers’ upcoming performance at the final, with their perhaps fortuitous piece ‘Going Fah Gold’.

The NIFCA Performing Arts Finals will get underway with the Scotiabank Dance Night on Friday, October 28th at the Frank Collymore Hall at 7:00 p.m. and will continue until the 31st with the Music, Theatre and Juniors nights respectively.