This past month, all of my Opera for All classes have been working with our fabulously talented choreographer, Laura Marsh. Laura currently works at the Chicago High School for the Arts and has an extensive dance background that includes playing Curious George in a touring production about the cantankerous primate. She also specializes in improv dance.
Laura choreographed 5 original dances for my classes, taking into consideration each of their original opera stories so that each dance makes sense within the context of their operas. We chose a fun mix of songs that include “Try Everything” by Shakira, “Brave” by Sara Bareilles and “Beat It” by Michael Jackson, for the stories where animals are trying to kick destructive humans out of their habitat. The best part is that we got to learn some of the original choreography from Michael Jackson’s music video!
These are some of my favorite guest artist sessions because I love to dance and I love watching my students experience that sense of accomplishment when they finish learning their choreography and finally put their dance all together. Like all of the artistic disciplines and really any new experience, certain students excel right away while others tend to struggle. But the best part is that they have the opportunity to try it. Here is a video of Ms. Nuñez’s amazing 4th grade dancers dancing to the song “Life is a Magic Thing” from the Fern Gully soundtrack. Make sure you watch until the end when they make a conga line!