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Saturday June 10th

Dance company to perform at ArtsCenter

The group Arts In Action, led by Whillie Hinton, practice and prepare for their opening act in the show.
Buy Photos The group Arts In Action, led by Whillie Hinton, practice and prepare for their opening act in the show.

Workers by day. Dancers by night.

The Carrboro Modern Dance Company opens its doors to both experienced dancers and novices alike.


Time: 8 p.m. Saturday

Location: The ArtsCenter


The company, created in June 2011, is teaming up with the ArtsCenter to host “Forward,” only the company’s second show, on Saturday.

The performance will feature several pieces of original choreography by local dancers, including Marie Middleton, who teaches classes for the company.

“I think the audience will really enjoy seeing adults who have nine-to-five jobs perform,” Middleton said.

“I think they’ll appreciate the commitment that people like themselves have.”

“Forward” will feature a variety of styles, including performances from Durham’s Blank Slate Dance company, as well as a piece performed by middle school students and one solo performed without music.

“The show will be a good sampling from local artists of different levels from different backgrounds,” said Mary Norkus, artistic director at the dance company.

“We’re different from a top-notch professional company. We’re really about supporting dancers locally.”

Norkus said the company was intended to be a vehicle for local dancers to have the opportunity to choreograph, perform and collaborate.

This is not the first time the company has worked with the ArtsCenter.

The ArtsCenter hosted “Coming Home,” the company’s first show, in November 2011.

Beven Ramsey, the dance company’s managing director, said “Forward” will be a progression from 2011.

“I feel like we have an even better foundation this time around,” Ramsey said. “It’s really been a strong, creative process.”

Since the initial show, the two organizations have formed a partnership, with the company becoming the resident dance company of the ArtsCenter — an unusual practice for the arts organization, Norkus said.

“Many of the company’s first participants were some of my former students,” she said.

“This area has such a tight, close-knit dance community, and the ArtsCenter is a wonderful place for something like that.”

As part of the partnership, the company holds classes on Sundays at the ArtsCenter on various kinds of modern dance, all taught by local dancers.

Jeri Lynn Schulke, artistic director of the ArtsCenter stage, said the partnership between the dance company and the ArtsCenter is broad and will continue to grow.

“It’s really an all-encompassing relationship,” Schulke said.

“They offer a variety of opportunities to local dancers, and that’s what the ArtsCenter is all about. We want to bring the community to the arts.”

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