Monday, September 29, 2014

Jamaican Dance Choreographer Orville Hall's Successful Bid to Introduce Dance Moves from the Dancehall to the Classroom

It's a break through for a well thought out plan, Dance Choreographer Orville Hall will be
Hall and the Dance Xpression Dancers
conducting a three months course in teaching 'Dancehall moves' at his Alma mater the, Excelsior Community College located in the parish of St. Andrew, Jamaica according to the Jamaica Observer.


Orville Hall in his quest to 'preserve Dancehall and show others that there are sections of the genre that can be taught in schools' and that 'people can get accredited and certified,' submitted a layout course to the H.E.A.R.T Trust NTVET and subsequently gotten the approval. The three-months course out-line according to Hall will see children introduced to mainly contemporary moves that capture the elements of ska, revival and kumina dances quickly pointing out that the more popular dances requires more practicing, "...years..and before a person can call himself a dancer, he would have needed to learn the language of dance as any musician does with music." he told the Observer.

Members of Orville Hall's Dance Xpression team Shelly Challum, Stacy-Ann Facey, Sherene
Davis and Nacole Trowers make of the list of tutors for the course as well as Kent
Robinson and Chad 'Global Bob' Torrington.  Hall's lesson plan includes techniques of the late, flamboyant dancer Gerald 'Bogle' Levy whom Hall reiterates that his (Bogle's) dance moves are still very popular in Europe.  "It is one of the few dances that has identifiable steps, new-school dances looks more like hip-hop. Bogle is a very important model in the dance genre. Bogle, Hall further stated, created the famous 'Bogle Dance' and left us with the 'Willy Bounce' which are still, two of the most popular dance moves identified with Dancehall worldwide. 

Orville Hall founded Dance Xpression in 2000 and since he has been travelling across the world teaching/sharing Jamaican dances with various interest groups.  Hall conducted classes while he was a full-time student at Excelsior Community College in 1998 where he assisted with writing the course for the Urban Contemporary Folk (dancehall course), "Patsy Rickets, Kenny Salmon and myself were responsible.." he recalled. After graduating in 2000 Hall returned a year later to earn an Associate Degree in the Performing Arts and stayed with the College for 11 years writing skits as well as getting the school involved in Jamaica Cultural Development Commission activities.

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