MIAMI-- Arthur Mitchell, the distinguished former New York City ballet dancer and the founding artistic director of Dance Theatre of Harlem, will teach a master class forNWSA students on Wednesday, January 20, 2016. He will be assisted by NWSA alumna, Paunika Jones, a former member of the Dance Theatre of Harlem dancecompany.
Mr. Mitchell, who, withRuth Wiesen, Director of the Thomas Armour Youth Ballet, is touring Miami-area dance programs, will bring his immeasurable gifts as a teacher and mentor to NWSA to inspire these talented students. Over the years, many NWSA studentshave studied at Dance Theatre of Harlem in summer intensives and a number have gone on to join this world-renowned company (and/or the DTH Ensemble), including Ms. Jones, Ebony Haswell, Garry Rawls, Quashone Perry, Nathaniel Stokes, and most recently, Gentry George (2015).
As the second African-American dancer to join the New York City Ballet Company, Mr. Mitchell returned from working abroad after the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King to create the Dance Theatre of Harlem School and Company. Arthur Mitchell has been the recipient of numerous awards and distinctions including the MacArthur Fellowship and the United States National Medal of the Arts.
According to NWSA dean of dance, Mary Lisa Burns, “This is a rare and thrilling opportunity for NWSA dancers to meet the legendary Mr. Mitchell, to study with him, and to experience his artistry in person. His visionary contribution to the art of dance has beenimmeasurable and we are honored to welcome him here for the first time.”
Arthur Mitchell was born New York City on March 27, 1934, and received his dance training at New York City’s High School of the Performing Arts, where he became the first male student to win the coveted Annual Dance Award. During is young career as a dancer, the iconic George Balanchine specifically choreographed two dance roles for him including the pas de deux from Agon and the lighthearted Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In 1966 Mr. Mitchel organized the American Negro Dance Company and founded the National Ballet Company of Brazil in Rio de Janeiro. Supported by the Ford Foundation and Mrs. Alva B. Gimbel, Arthur Mitchell launched the Dance Theatre of Harlem with his mentor and ballet instructor Karel Shook.
About NWSA: A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative and academic development through a curriculum that reflects the rich multicultural state of Florida. With programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art, Dance, Music and Theater, NWSA offers the high school diploma as well as four-year BFA and BM college degrees. Through itsrigorous curriculum and conservatory-style teaching NWSA empowers its students to become leaders in the arts. Areas of training for the NWSA dance programinclude Ballet, Choreography, Modern Dance and World Dance.
New World School of theArts was created by the Florida Legislature as a center of excellence in the performing and visual arts. It is an educational partnership of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College and the University of Florida.
Further information regarding NWSA’s dance program is available by calling 305-237-3341. More information about New World School of the Arts at 305-237-3135 or at nwsa.mdc.edu.