Flushing Town Hall Teaching Artist: Pia Monique Murray
Pia Monique Murray is known as a jack of all trades in the dance industry, having been a choreographer, performer, teacher, arts administrator, stage, tour/company manager, and rehearsal assistant. She has worked with nora chipaumire, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Paloma McGregor, Dianne McIntyre, Blondell Cummings, Vangeline, Katsura Kan and Pedro Ruiz in various capacities. Pia has been a teaching artist for Camille A. Brown & Dancers, Urban Arts Partnership, Dancewave, and Mark DeGarmo & Dancers. As a Lincoln Center Scholar, she obtained a master’s degree in dance education from Hunter College and graduated with high honors as a member of the National Honors Society for Dance. She performs contemporary dance company with RAKIA!, traditional dance from Côte d’Ivoire with Vado Diomande’s Kotchegna Dance Company, and leads Pia Monique Murray Dance Collective (PMMDC).
As an educator Pia’s pedagogy combines art education (expanding student experiences through various art media) and aesthetic education (engaging with works of art through various learning modalities). By creating, performing, responding, and connecting to dance, students learn to apply tools, skills, and concepts in various situations in order to achieve a goal or express an idea. Pia’s classes don’t just develop strong and flexible dancers, but more importantly smart dancers that can apply their acquired skills to any endeavor they pursue in life.
West African Dance and Culture Residency
This residency introduces traditional dances from Guinée and Ivory Coastsuch as Kuku, Tiriba, Mandjiani and Dundunba from Guinee, as well as Kuku, Bademalon, Manekadon and Ngoron from Ivory Coast. Students will learn the cultural context behind each dance and an accompanying song along with a choreographed sequence of the selected dance. Though classes may be taught with recorded music, the experience is made richer when accompanied by live drumming. Grades K-8
Curriculum-based Creative Dance Residency
Creative dance emphasizes expression and composition and is an excellent way to make curricular connections within the arts experience. This creative dance residency draw inspiration from the students’ academic studies (social studies, math, science, language arts, etc.), using the intersections between the subject matter and dance to deepen students’ understanding and provide rich inspiration for student-generated choreographic compositions. Grades K-8
Hip-Hop Dance Residency
In this hip-hop residency students learn a selection of popular old school and modern hip-hop moves from the 1970’s to present. The residency may be offered as a comparative study of old school and modern hip-hop or a specific time period may be chosen as a focus. Grades K-12