Central Asian Dance Festival master classes in Astana

The first Central Asian Dance Festival master classes were conducted in Astana. Over 100 participants from Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Russia and Kazakhstan were trained by world famous choreographers from the United States such as Katherine Pilkington and Tara Compton.

PAUL GORDON EMERSON, AMERICAN CHOREOGRAPHER:

 - This is the first festival of its kind both in Astana and here in Central Asia. It is the first time these many countries have been brought together to work and it has been an astonishing experience not just for us, teachers or advisors, but for our remarkable group of dancers from thousands of miles some of whom came many days to be here. We have been working every single day for eight, ten to twelve hours a day.

On the final day, participants of the Central Asian Dance Festival presented the world premiere of the Falling Man ballet to an audience in the capital. The dance shows the surprise that can happen to a huge and modern metropolis, New York.

PAUL GORDON EMERSON, AMERICAN CHOREOGRAPHER:

-New York is my hometown. It is the hometown of almost all of the people who are here from the states. As a New Yorker, I’m a believer in how resilient and how proud New York is. A number of years ago it went through a very difficult experience.

The participants practised 12 hours per day for the performance. Organizers said many dancers tried the new type of dance such as neoclassical ballet, modern, Broadway, improvisation, jazz and hip-hop.

TOGZHAN BOLEKZHANOVA, FESTIVAL PARTICIPANT:

 - This is a very large-scale event and every dancer or artist is happy to take part in it. These two weeks went at a high level. They flew very quickly. Interesting teachers from the United States have arrived. For example, I'm dancing hip-hop. I acquired a lot of interesting information and new skills.

DARINA YUDINA, FESTIVAL PARTICIPANT FROM RUSSIA:

 - I came from Russia to take part in this project. The master classes were organized at the highest level. Teachers are very professional. What they gave us, they took our soul, entered our head, passed through our body and gave what you saw on this stage.

The Central Asian Dance Festival is organized by the US Embassy and the Kazakh National Academy of Choreography. All of the participants hope that the event will be conducted every year.