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Ballet Academy East to Offer New Class

Ballet Academy East to Offer New Class

Ballet Academy East is proud to announce the addition of a dance class called Dance for PD for people with Parkinson's this fall. Dance for PD classes, developed collaboratively by Mark Morris Dance Group and the Brooklyn Parkinson Group, are currently offered at Mark Morris Dance Center, The Juilliard School, and at several locations in The Bronx and Queens. The class at Ballet Academy East represents the program's first East Side location and provides access for an area of Manhattan previously underserved by this kind of resource.

"Ballet Academy East is honored to collaborate with Dance for PD in bringing the joy and physical benefits of dance to people with Parkinson's disease. Our goal is for every participant to leave class feeling uplifted and inspired by their abilities," said Julia Dubno, founder and director of Ballet Academy East.

Dance for PD, which originated at the Mark Morris Dance Center in 2001, offers specialized dance classes accompanied by live music for people with Parkinson's, their caregivers, family members and friends. Professional teaching artists integrate movement from modern, ballet, tap, folk and social dancing, and choreographic repertory to engage participants' minds and bodies and create an enjoyable, social environment for artistic exploration. Because Dance for PD focuses on the aesthetic movement of dance rather than acting as therapy, participants in class they are encouraged to approach movement like dancers rather than as patients. Dance for PD classes provide a social environment for participants to interact with other community members, and to share a positive, stimulating activity together with their partners. Participants report that the classes boost their confidence levels, transform their attitudes about living with a chronic illness, and help them manage some of the symptoms associated with Parkinson's disease. Consistent interaction within the close-knit community of the dance class helps to combat social isolation and depression while empowering participants with a sense of physical possibility and artistic achievement.


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by Barnett Serchuk