Authentic voices. Remarkable stories. AOL On Originals showcase the passions that make the world a more interesting place.
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Hello! My name is Theresa D'Alessandro. I'm the Director and lead instructor here at the School of Theatrical Dance in Great Falls, Virginia. I've been in the teaching, performing profession for over 25 years and here at the studio, we offer instruction in a range of dance forms, from classical belly to contemporary dance.
Today with the help of my students, Joanie, Dana and Stormie, we're going to share with you some of the basic principles of contemporary dance and build them into performance piece.
In today's lesson plan, we're going to be covering torso contractions, torso spiral, breaths and side fall, exercise for feet and ankles with triplets and body spiral, pliés and relevés, side stretch and circle, retirés, leg extensions, a side fall from a standing position and then we'll get onto our dance performance.
In preparation for this, you'll want a floor space of approximately 10 feet by 10 feet, comfortable clothing and exercise mat. Footwear is optional, you may choose to wear ballet sleepers, socks or a special dance sandal called a foot undie, that slips over your toes and prevents injury to the ball of your foot.
When choosing your music for this find something that inspires you, fast slow, old or new, this choreography can be adapted to any kind of music. And most importantly, follow our warm up steps to prevent muscle injury or strain.
Before we begin, allow me to tell you a little bit more about myself. I have had the opportunity to dance for the Washington Opera Ballet for several seasons at the Kennedy Center as well as performing at Arena Stage. 1994-1997, I worked in television and radio and dance in Seoul, Korea. And since 1980, I've been the Director here at The School of Theatrical Dance. So let's get started.