NY6 Think Tank Fellow, Danielle Iwata, from Colgate University launches her Blog.
“I am heavily involved with the dance community at Colgate, and have been pushing to have dance integrated into the academic curriculum and receive equal recognition as fine arts, music, and theater have on campus. Dance’s strength as an extra-curricular on campus is immeasurable. Dancefest (a semi-annual showcase hosted at the Colgate Memorial Chapel) is always packed beyond what is established as a safe number by the fire department. It has the student support from the audience, as well as the passion and talent from the participants.Dance develops skill sets that are incredibly valuable inside and outside of the classroom. We learn about stage presence—having that confidence to stand up in front of 750 people and perform something personal. We learn about trust—knowing that other members of your group (who have likely become family) will catch you during the falls and pull you up during the lifts. We learn aboutbodies–understanding where we are in space and being aware of others around us. We learn about teamwork–developing thoserelationships with other members and being comfortable enough around them to explain the past experiences and emotions that go into a piece. We learn about passion–committing ourselves to the pieces and the people.
This is why I dance.
And this is why I am a NY6 Fellow: to present dance as academically rigorous and valuable coursework; and to spread appreciation for dance as an insightful experience of corporeality and inspiration.
This blog will feature profiles of students, professors, and alumni who have been involved with dance in an effort to encourage others to consider dance in a more serious light. It will also display photographs and videos from my work with the Colgate Dance Initiative, which aim to showcase the talent and passion of students on campus, with the hopes that we can garner a greater appreciation for our art.”