March 2011 Random Roundup

I wish there was some technology that could transcribe my thoughts about various dance experiences into a blog post while I’m riding the Metro back to Dupont Circle. Alas, there is not so I don’t get to share as much information about classes, workshops and performances as I would like to. Instead of complaining that this technology does not exist, I thought it might be fun to do a random roundup of my most recent experiences.

Edgeworks Dance Theater

EDGEWORKS Dance Theater (photo credit: Isaac Oboka)

Week of March 7th – I met with three talented dancers on three separate days this week: Rachel Bell of DancEthos, Kelly Mayfield of Contradiction Dance and Helanius J. Wilkins of EDGEWORKS Dance Theater. It was great to catch up with these artists and find out what they’re working on:

I also finally had the chance to take class with Esperonto Bean on Thursday, March 10th. He was a special guest instructor at Culture Shock Company Class at DC Dance Collective. Check out the YouTube video of the combination. In addition to teaching his choreo, Esperonto shared some words: “Every one of us is writing the books of history,” he said. “It’s our responsibility to be more than just dancers, but also to be historians of our culture.”

Bloggers Brunch (photo credit: C. Fox Communications)

Week of March 14th – Last Friday, I attended a Bloggers Brunch hosted by C. Fox Communications and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County. Carrie Fox of C. Fox Communications moderated the media panel which included: Christie Garton of USA Today, Mike Grass of Washington City Paper, Maura Judkis of, Amy L. Kovac-Ashley of, Jessica McFadden of A Parent in Silver Spring, Greg O’Neill of Greg’s List and Jackie Trescott of The Washington Post. This event might not seem dance related, but most of the journalists featured cover arts and culture. You may be able to apply some of their advice to your own dance organization. Here are some useful tidbits from the discussion.

  • Story ideas: When looking for story ideas, Jackie Trescott of The Washington Post turns to for a digest of arts and culture information. This site could be helpful to find ways to tie in your story with a larger trend.
  • Facebook: Maura Judkis of will often attend events that she finds out about through Facebook. I was surprised by this because I loathe Facebook event invites, but I do find them useful for putting together my weekend event guides.
  • Twitter: Four out of seven reporters raised their hands when Carrie asked if they use Twitter for gathering story ideas. Jessica McFadden of A Parent in Silver Spring said it’s a great place for inspiration, but warned that it’s not a full proof way to communicate.
  • Events: Promoting an event? Anyone can contribute to event calendars on The hyperlocal news venture of AOL has several sites that cover specific communities in DC, Maryland and Virginia including Georgetown, Bethesda and Reston among others.
  • Photos: Most of the reporters said their media outlets don’t take user generated content. They do however love photos! Christie Garton of USA Today asked that you send photos after a reporter has expressed interest in your pitch. Photos take up valuable e-mail space.
  • Pitches: Mike Grass admits that Washington City Paper can be hard to pitch. He detests packaged PR and advises not to pitch several news organizations in the same way. They’re looking for the local, quirky angle of your story.
Ajnin Precizion

Kendrick Santiago (photo credit: Justin Jaro)

Last Saturday, I made my way to Gaithersburg for Ajnin Precizion’s Intensive 2 at Halo Dance Studio. Ajnin Precizion, established by Kristin Santiago, is a group of individuals joined by the love and passion of dance and self-expression. The intensive featured four classes for $18 taught by Ajnin Precizion members David Specht, Kendrick Santiago and John Cheng, and special guest Billy Ta, former director of Major Definition. Each class followed the same format – warm up, break down of choreography, then groups, but featured a different style of hip hop. My favorite class was Kendrick’s, which featured upbeat house choreography. Loved his energy! For more information about Ajnin Precizion, follow them on Twitter.


About Cecile
Cecile Oreste is an arts marketing and public relations professional living in Los Angeles. Follow her on Twitter @cecileoreste.

2 Responses to March 2011 Random Roundup

  1. I actually wanted to go to the Blogger’s Brunch myself, but I had rehearsal! 🙂 Thanks for going and passing on the those tips. I appreciate getting the valuable cliff notes version of what you learned.

    • Cecile says:

      You’re very welcome! Click on the picture of the panel. It should lead to C. Fox Communications’ recap of the event.

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