Physical. Language. Grace. Kinesthetic. Gesture. Emotional. Space. Powerful. Communication. Senses. Body. Force. Human. Embody. Technical. Effort. Dialogue. Chance. Touch. Suspend. Propel. Intrigue.


Grand Valley State University Dance Program offers students a chance to develop technical dance skills through rigorous technique courses and performing opportunities.  The Dance Program guides a dancer's artistry, technique, emotions and physical facility to converge into a unique and dynamic performer. Through daily technique courses in Modern, Ballet, Jazz and Pointe, each dancer hones their craft in small classes with one-on-one Faculty/Student instruction.  GVSU Dance enables each dancer to interact within a dynamic group of performers while building a network of resources for their future careers. 


Check out an excerpt from: Fall Arts Dance 2013

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2013, 8 P.M.

Dance Company in Residence:


                                   Photo courtesy of McCallum Theatre, photographer Jack Hartin


GVSU Music and Dance Faculty and Students present

Memories of Summer: The American Identity in Dance

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2013, 8 P.M.




Prelude carillon concert from 7:20–7:50 p.m.

Featuring Guest Carillonneur Helen Hofmeister Hawley

Throughout the 20th Century an explosion of original music filled American dance performances with the iconic sounds of a newly emerging American identity.  Few composers captured this powerful presence more than Samuel Barber, who, when most composers were experimenting with dissonance and freedom in musical form, was writing in a lyrical, romantic style filled with achingly beautiful melody – distinctively American melody.   Through the virtuosity of nationally celebrated choreographer, Lauren Edson, you will experience a fresh, new interpretation of Barber’s music in modern dance.  Come experience the breezy chatter and carefree excitement of the Boardwalk while capturing the essence of hot summer nights from the deep south of old America with the nationally acclaimed Lauren Edson + Dancers

About Lauren Edson + Dancers

     Lauren Edson, originally from Boise, Idaho began her training at Ballet Idaho Academy and Westside Dance Academy (OR).  She continued her formal studies at North Carolina School of the Arts and The Juilliard School, under the direction of the late Benjamin Harkarvy.   She is a 2003 alumnus of the School at Jacob's Pillow Contemporary Dance Program.  She most recently danced with the highly acclaimed Trey McIntyre Project located in Boise, ID.  While a part of this celebrated company she was  featured in several of McIntyre's works including: Bad Winter, Oh! Inverted World, In Dreams, Blue Until June, Arrantza and Shape.  Her past professional experiences include: Hubbard Street 2, Ballet Idaho and Idaho Dance Theatre.  She has had the privilege to perform the works of Jose Limon, Paul Taylor, Angelin Perljicov, Robert Battle, Alex Ketley and Pina Bausch, among others. 

As a choreographer, she has won several awards and been commissioned by numerous companies and Universities throughout the nation.   She was most recently one of three finalists selected to participate in Milwaukee Ballet's 2013 'Genesis' International Choreographic Competition and was honored to have received the Audience Favorite Award.  In November 2012, she won the Grand Prize Award at McCallum Theater's 15th Annual Dance Under the Stars Choreography Competition in Palm Desert, CA.   In February 2012, she won the Great Works Dance Project Choreography Prize, a National Choreography Competition affiliated with Western Michigan University.  Her work, Foreground was chosen to perform at the Kennedy Center in May 2012 as part of the National College Dance Festival.  She was selected to participate in The A.W.A.R.D. Show! 2011 and 2010 Seattle, affiliated with the Joyce Theatre, one of New York City’s major dance presenters.  In 2009, she won the Northwest Dance Project's first annual Pretty Creative’s International Choreographic competition.  She has recently been named Artist in Residence at Mystic Ballet (CT) and commissioned by Eisenhower Dance Ensemble (MI), Opera Idaho (ID) Polaris Dance Theatre (OR) Grand Valley State University (MI), Washington and Lee University (VA), Peck School of the Arts (WI)  Pacific University (OR) Palanza Dance (CA) and Houston Met Dance (TX)  to create work or serve as Artist in Residence for their upcoming seasons.  In addition, her work has been featured at the American Dance Guild Festival (NY), Idaho Dance Theatre (ID), Conduit: Charged (OR), Ten Tiny Dances (WA), Aerial Without Limits (OR), Portland Youth Ballet (OR), Northwest Dance Project (OR), American College Dance Festival (MI), Regional Dance America (UT), DROP Dance Collective (ID), NW Fusion Dance Company (OR), Balance Dance Company (ID) and Coriolis Dance Collective (WA), to name a few.  She received a 2012 Honoraria Fellowship from Idaho Commission on the Arts, recognizing her achievements in choreography.

She has been a guest artist for numerous companies, Universities and studios throughout the nation including: BodyVox (OR), Willamette University (OR), Northwest Dance Project (OR), Grand Valley State University (MI), Washington and Lee University (VA)  Westside Dance Academy (OR), Boise State University (ID), Balance Dance Company (ID), Montana Arts Association (MO), Columbia Dance Center (OR), Portland Youth Ballet (OR) , Ballet Idaho Academy (ID), Northwest Conservatory of Dance (WA), Summer DanceFest (ID) Vancouver School of Arts and Academics (OR) and Western Michigan University (MI), to name a few.


Lauren Edson

Jason Hartley 

Jem Wierenga 

Yurek Hansen 

Nell Rollins 

Mallory Welsh

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Page last modified March 17, 2014