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Mar 27, 2011 ... She learned that, for a while, there had indeed been a local Bosnian dance company — but that it had disbanded. ...more
MADCO uses dance to connect with local Bosnians BY CALVIN WILSON ? firstname.lastname@example.org ? 314-340-8346 | Posted: Sunday, March 27, 2011 12:00 am St. Louis is said to be home to the largest Bosnian population
outside of Europe, estimated at 50,000. That fact impressed and
inspired Stacy West, executive and artistic director of MADCO, the
resident dance company at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Intrigued by the idea of connecting with the Bosnian community
through dance, West a few years ago set about looking for dancers
and choreographers who might help with the project. She learned
that, for a while, there had indeed been a local Bosnian dance
company ? but that it had disbanded. Luckily, she persisted in her search, ultimately making contact
with a young Bosnian named Haris Fazlic. "Still Standing," a piece
themed to the Bosnian experience, will premiere next weekend at the
Blanche M. Touhill Performing Arts Center as part of the MADCO
program "Veza (Connection)." "Originally, I was going to do a whole evening based on Bosnian
themes," West said. "With Bosnian music and dance, and contemporary
dance in the middle of all that. But it really made more sense to
do one piece. "And I started thinking about just how dance, in general,
connects us to all kinds of different topics ? and how
choreographers use either things that have happened to them, or
things that they've been affected by, to make a statement. So
that's where the name 'Veza' came from, which is 'connection' in
Bosnian." West's interest in Bosnia was piqued when she met Lejla Panjeta,
a media scholar and filmmaker from Sarajevo who visited UMSL in
2008. "One of the things she said to me was, 'After the war (in the
1990s), we forgot how to dance.' That really moved me, and I wanted
to learn more about the Bosnian community," West said. "This was
just a group of people that I really didn't know anything
about." West eventually began an email correspondence with Fazlic, who
had been involved with the Bosnian dance company (which, as it
turns out, had been started by his father) and was interested in
working with MADCO. "I invited him to meet with me, and we went to a great Bosnian
restaurant," she said, adding that she was surprised to discover
that Fazlic was a high school student. "We didn't have a lot of
common life experience, but we had dance in common." "Still Standing" emerged as a collaboration involving Fazlic,
who proved to be a valuable resource, and MADCO choreographers
Lindsay Hawkins and Jennifer Reilly. "I came to the (U.S.) because of the war in Bosnia," said
Fazlic, 18. "I told Stacy my story, and she thought it was
extremely interesting." His role in creating the piece was to provide real-life stories,
cultural information and historical background, "a little bit of
music, and experience that only a dancer would have," he said. Although the piece includes some traditional Bosnian dance, West
said, "We decided early on that we wanted it to have a contemporary
feel. "We really wanted to get across the idea of these people that
brought this culture and way of life to the United States ? and to
St. Louis in particular ? but were melting into the community and
seeking the American way of life." The program will include "Reflections in the Well of Solace,"
choreographer Joseph Mills' response to the 9/11 tragedy;
"Disconnect," which is by MADCO associate artistic director Todd
Weeks and deals with the impact of technology on human
relationships; "The Carpet," inspired by a childhood memory of
choreographer Michael Foley; and "Flashpoint," an abstract work by
Timothy O'Slynne. What 'Veza (Connection)'
? Who MADCO ? When 8 p.m. Friday
and April 2 ? Where Lee Theatre, Blanche M.
Touhill Performing Arts Center, University of Missouri-St. Louis
? How much $20 ? More
info 314-516-4949; touhill.org or madcodance.com
May 9, 2002 ... IT IS 6 p.m., and in the tiny room of an East Oakland community center, Ismet Sesic is keeping a culture alive. "Linija, linija!more
Bosnian refugees dance to a new life - SFGate IT IS 6 p.m., and in the tiny room of an East Oakland community center, Ismet Sesic is keeping a culture alive. "Linija, linija!" he calls out, trying to line up 20 exuberant kids. Then he hits the button of the CD player. Music fills the air, and feet start moving. "These are 600-year-old dances," Mirijas Velic, one of the fathers, whispered in my ear. "They're traditional." A world away from war-ravaged Bosnia, these children are learning dances from a homeland that they know only in memory. "I left the music box my grandfather gave me," said Indira Golubovic, 12. "Before he died in the war, he told me to keep it forever." About 3,500 Bosnian refugees made the Bay Area their home after fleeing their country in the mid- to late 1990s. An estimated 140,000 Bosnians live in the United States. In the Bay Area, the largest settlement is in Santa Clara County, but a newer community of Bosnians has taken root in the East Bay. Although most are Muslim, they are a highly secularized population. As many as a third are in interfaith or interethnic marriages, which made them targets in ethnic hostilities that still plague their country. ALTHOUGH SOME ARE still struggling, many Bosnian refugees have done remarkably well, finding blue-collar jobs suited to their skilled-laborer backgrounds. Fifteen families in Oakland have even bought homes. But as they forge new lives in America, their need for community is reflected in the phenomenal success of Sesic's weekly dance classes, which started with seven children five months ago and now draws 60 to 80 youngsters. "We hate to miss class," said Adisa Grosic, 11. "It's where we get to see all our friends." Bosnian dance is fast-paced and hypnotic, with fleet-footed dancers linking hands and twirling scarfs. For months now, the youngsters have been practicing the Sota and the Bosna, two romantic dances of love and flirtation. The classes started in December in the Bosnian Community Room, founded by two nonprofit organizations that saw the need for community building in a population that remains divided by its wartime experiences. Refugee Transitions, of San Francisco and Oakland, helps immigrants become self- sufficient by teaching them English and life skills. The International Rescue Committee sponsored most of the Bosnians refugees. The room, in a community center on East 14th Street, offers an after-school program for youth and social services. The room also is a gathering place for war widows. "We go to the room and have cake and coffee, and we talk," said Vukitsa Skrapic, rescue committee liaison for 32 war widows and their 60 children. ATIFA KAPIC, 38, arrived in Oakland three years ago with her four children. Kapic's husband, Izet, was killed and their home burned down during the war. "I had no house, no husband, nobody to help me," said Kapic, who also lost two brothers, her father and father-in-law. Others are also scarred. Samir Golubovic, 20, lost his dad at age 13 in the war. "It made me grow up fast," he said. "But look around you, everyone lost somebody, family, friends, neighbors." On Saturday, he joined the colorfully dressed dancers at the first performance of the troop in Oakland. Above the dancers on the stage was a large banner that proclaimed, "SEVDAH, " which means dreams. "These are modest people," said Zelmira Zivny of the committee. "They don't expect miracles. That's why they're doing so well."
Bosnian traditional dance, Bosnian traditional foodways ... In her spare time, she teaches Bosnian children traditional Bosnian dance, songs, and poetry, ...more
Iowa Artist Directory & Rosters
Close General Description of Work: Music and dance are part and parcel of Bosnian social life. As in many Eastern bloc and European countries, folk music and dance are taught to children in school; young adults are encouraged to study folk dance and music at university. Folk festivals and competitions between performing arts groups were a major part of Bosnian life, and amateur groups called Cultural Art Societies were common throughout the republic. Required to perform the dance, music, and song of Bosnia, Croatian, and Serbia, they were often not permitted to specialize in the traditions of only one group.
Bio: Aldijana Radoncic of Des Moines, was born in Sarejevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The recipient of a 2003 Iowa Arts Council Traditional Arts Apprenticeship grant for Master Artists, Aldijana was a professional folkloric dancer in her former homeland. Trained in modern dance and music as well, she performed at international folkloric festivals throughout Europe, Asia, and Africa. Like many other Bosnian refugees, the families of the Sevdah dancers fled the war in Bosnia and were resettled in Des Moines after time in European refugee camps. Like many other Bosnian refugees, Radoncic and her family fled the war in Bosnia and came to Des Moines in 1995. A graduate of the Sarejevo College for Business and a former financial consultant, Radoncic was employed for several years as a caseworker for Employee and Family Resources, a non-profit social service agency in Des Moines that serves refugees and immigrants.
Aldijana is very active and well respected in the community. In her spare time, she teaches Bosnian children traditional Bosnian dance, songs, and poetry, as well as modern dance. She is dedicated to passing on her knowledge about national heritage and dance technique through education and presentation.
Radoncic is the leader of the Bosnian folk dance group Sevdah. The name of the group is from the traditional Bosnian music form "Sevdah". Although it is reliably known that the Sevdah originated after the Turks came to medieval Bosnia, nobody has been able to determine exactly when this was. Sevdah performers were requested to feel the music they performed, in order to get listeners genuinely acquainted with the message each song was meant to convey. When the Sevdah was first introduced, this music was performed by a singer with a popular and simple instrument (saz) only, so that the interpretation was always loose with and open to number of improvisations. This loose and improvised style remains an important characteristic in later forms of the Sevdah when other instruments like accordion, violin or guitar started to be used. Over time, the Sevdah changed from being performed before small audiences in privileged households to become a popular musical expression equally liked by all layers of society. Sevdah remains a musical expression full of emotion, calling for old times when people lived easier and loved more.
Iowa Roots interview: http://www.iowaartscouncil.org/programs/folk-and-traditional-arts/iowa-roots/season-one/aldijana-radoncic.shtml
Iowa Folklife II (curriculum), Bosnian unit: http://www.uni.edu/iowaonline/folklife_v2/bosnian.htm Services Offered 1: Talks about Bosnian traditional culture and history: dance, music, foodways Services Offered 2: Teaching Bosnian folk dance and simple songs Services Offered 3: Demonstrating Bosnian traditional foodways Regions: Central Months available: : all Performance fees, mileage charges, related to arts services: : $250/day plus travel expenses Accessibility accommodations, space requirements, equipment and all other needs
that should be met by sponsors: : call for information
Since 2006, Genesis :Sarajevo has held a two week dance intensive twice a year in Bosnia and Herzegovina where girls and young women from different ...more
Help GENESIS: SARAJEVO hold a 2-week summer dance intensive in Bosnia & Herzegovina! by Amy Danielson — Kickstarter
What is Kickstarter?
We?re the largest funding platform for creative projects in the world.
Don't want to forget? Click the star to add this project to your profile. ABOUT GENESIS: SARAJEVO GENESIS:SARAJEVO has been working since 2006 to empower young artists and to unify different cultures and religions through dance and arts education in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The goal is to create outlets and more artists in developing areas of the world while promoting peace. Please visit our website: www.genesissarajevo.org And, for a more detailed PDF project description: Please Click Here WHAT WE WANT TO DO:
Since 2006, Genesis :Sarajevo has held a two week dance intensive twice a year in Bosnia and Herzegovina where girls and young women from different ethnicities have the opportunity to interact through dance and to perform in different cities. Our program is unique as we go beyond teaching girls dance technique. We encourage their creative process by giving them the opportunity to develop their own choreography about issues that affect them in their country. We were fortunate to receive our first grant from Freedom to Create last year which allowed us to expand our program and reach out to more people, but our funding ends in May and so far there are no other prospects of outside sources of funding. It is extremely important at this point in our development to continue with the summer dance intensive that the young girls in our program are looking forward to all year! WHAT WE NEED: The money raised on Kickstarter will help cover: - studio rental for two weeks - stage rental for the performance - housing and food for instructors - costumes - local transportation Of course $3,000 is just the tip of the iceberg. Our actual project cost is $6,000. Any extra funds will help us to make this intensive happen and possibly expand performing in other cities in the Bosnia & Herzegovina region. Thank you for helping to make this summer dance intensive possible!
- Amy Danielson Here is an example of the $50 backer award of "Bosnian slipper socks"
Have a question?
If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.
Name listed in the program and on the website! Postcard from Bosnia, written by one of the young participants about their experiences dancing with Genesis! Along with your name listed in program and on the website. :-) DVD of the summer intensive performance and a Genesis: Sarajevo magnet. Along with the $10 and $20 rewards. A pair of colorful handmade Bosnian slipper socks (see photo to left ), and all of the above!!!
One choreography piece in the summer intensive will be named after you...and you got it, all of the above! The Supreme Package: Create a concept (age appropriate) for one choreography that will be performed during the summer intensive, plus an additional piece of choreography in the performance will be named after you, plus all of the other above rewards! Get awesome projects delivered to your inbox each week. Kickstarter is the largest funding platform for creative projects in the world. Every month, tens of thousands of amazing people pledge millions of dollars to projects from the worlds of music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields.
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