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Having A Ball CPS Ballroom Dance Competition Announces Winners

Having A Ball CPS Ballroom Dance Competition Announces Winners

Chicago Public Schools Office of Arts Education proudly announces the fourth annual Having a Ball Competition Finalists. The coveted first place trophy was awarded following Sunday evening’s Competition to Eric Kasprzyk and Angieszka Suminski of Oriole Park; second place went to Jamari Bryant and D’Kyra Long of Attucks Academy; third place went to Timothy Grzebieluch and Allyson Abbinanti of Oriole Park; fourth place to Eric Quinones and Raven Jones of New Sullivan; and fifth and sixth places went to Jawaun Lee and Ketyra Carter, and Hasaan P. Morris and Janell Island, respectively, all of Attucks Academy.  The Final Competition, held on Sunday, May 17 at the Stephen M Bailey Auditorium, was free and open to the public and saw an unprecedented crowd turn out to support the 80 CPS competitors.

The Having a Ball Final Ballroom Dance Competition was the result of 20 weeks of intensive in-school ballroom dance instruction for fifth-grade CPS students. The Competition featured 40 student couples performing the Cha Cha, Waltz, Paso Doble, Tango and Jive for a panel of professional ballroom dance judges including world-renowned Latin dance champion Donald Johnson. Special performances by DanceWorks Chicago and the Elementary Dance Scholarship Pilot Program students added to the evening’s festivities.

More than 950 fifth grade students from throughout Chicago partook in Having a Ball 2008-09. Participating schools include:  Addams Elementary, Agassiz Elementary, Alcott Elementary, Attucks Elementary, Cleveland Elementary, Edwards School, Hefferan Elementary, Kipling Elementary, May Community Academy, New Sullivan Elementary, Onahan Elementary, Oriole Park Elementary, Sandoval Elementary, Saucedo Scholastic Academy and Thorp Scholastic Academy.

For more information, please visit www.cpsarts.org.

Having a Ball 08-09 and The Office of Arts Education partnered with Ryan Evans Dancesport in the implementation and development of the program’s dance curriculum, and with Northwestern University and University of Illinois at Chicago in providing professional development opportunities for Having a Ball teachers and educators.

Directed by David M. Roche, Ph.D., the mission of the CPS Office of Arts Education (OAE) is to provide more students with access to a quality arts education with meaningful arts experiences inside and outside the classroom. OAE is a resource for teachers, principals and arts organizations on arts curricula and discipline-based learning strategies, arts integration, professional development for teachers and principals, arts partnerships and arts teaching credentials. OAE is also a passionate advocate of greater funding in arts education.

While the staff advises and manages special projects and city-wide exhibitions, competitions and adjudications, its core work is to direct and produce a “Chicago Guide for Teaching and Learning in the Arts,” a pre-K-12 curricular map of the major arts disciplines that will allow schools and partnering arts organizations the opportunity to align their programs against standards applicable throughout the system as a measure of success.

For more information about Having a Ball 2008-09 or the CPS Office of Arts Education, please visit the Office of Arts Education’s new resource centered website www.cpsarts.org, which features a searchable arts organization database, calendar of events, featured programs and more.


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