Yoav Kaddar, director of the Dance Program in the West Virginia University College of Creative Arts, will attend a national symposium on dance in higher education presented by the National Dance Education Organization and the Center for Research in Dance Education at Temple University in Philadelphia, May 17-19.
“Dance 2050: The Future of Dance in Higher Education” is a national gathering of invited scholars and leaders in dance education, designed to determine the role of dance in higher education in the mid-21st century.
Topics to be addressed include: future projections for universities and colleges; the evolution of dance programs; dance in local, regional and world communities; dance and emergent technologies; and other topics that participants believe will shape, form and interact with the discipline of dance over the next three decades.
Through discussions and focus groups, participants will prepare a final conference document to be reported to the field.
“The promotion of dance as an essential component in higher education and as a lifelong tool for learning is critical,” Kaddar said. “If dance is to continue to exist and grow within higher education in 2050, we need to connect the dots. Dance cannot go this distance alone.”
Kaddar said educators must think in trans-disciplinary ways, utilize new technology and prioritize the leadership skills already inherent in dance.
“Developing courses and degrees that incorporate dance and movement would have deeper learning implications for all students beyond the explicit training of dancers,” he said.
“Also, dance needs to embrace new technologies to its advantage and incorporate them into the classroom and studio, making dance available and accessible to students that otherwise might shy away from it.
“As a performing art, dance has the advantage over other disciplines to present almost any subject matter in a more direct, interactive and embodied way of knowing.”
One of Kaddar’s areas of research is leadership and the performing arts.
“Dance and leadership skills are closely connected,” he said. “It takes leadership to take a cast of dancers through the creative process to the performance. By addressing leadership as a performing art, we can contribute to and use it for advancing dance as a central educational component. This can contribute to leadership training programs in other more traditional leadership disciplines, such as education and business.”
Kaddar holds degrees from The Juilliard School, the University of Washington, Seattle, and the State University of New York, Albany. He has performed nationally and internationally as guest artist and has been a member of such modern dance companies as the Jose Limon Dance Company, Paul Taylor Dance Company, Pilobolus Dance Theatre, Peter Pucci Plus Dancers and Jacob’s Pillow’s Men Dancers.
He has also danced with numerous independent New York City choreographers and has choreographed for dance and theater.
He presents workshops on topics related to dance, dance education and dance as theater at national and international conferences.
He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the American College Dance Festival Association, representing the Mid-Atlantic Region.
CONTACT: Charlene Lattea, College of Creative Arts
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