Accent Dance Brings Diversity And Dance To Bronx Schools And Children
Accent Dance NYC, an education and performance initiative that champions learning and communication through dance, is leaving its lasting impact on the children of the Bronx and beyond since its inception last year. An organization operating under the Erwin and Isabelle Ziegelman Foundation (originally founded by a Detroit-based family in 1988 to support the arts), Accent Dance NYC brings quality multicultural dance education and performance programs to underserved schools and communities, advocating for widespread access to the arts and dance education while highlighting the power of dance to showcase diversity, unify cultures and communities, and transform lives.
Led by a team of multicultural and multi-disciplinary teaching and professional performance artists from the U.S., Cuba, Spain, Colombia, Argentina, Haiti and beyond, Accent Dance NYC has developed a rich and curated dance education curriculum for students as well as high level educational lecture demonstrations. By cleverly combining elements of ballet, hip hop, salsa, jazz, and tango, the organization's programming connects each dance style to themes of history, multiculturalism, literacy, self-discipline, creativity, local pride, and mutual respect. Accent Dance NYC has served over 10 schools and local arts organizations since its inception last year: PS 87, PS 23, PS 33, PS 226, PS 246, PS 46, Mott Haven High School, the Poe Visitor Center, and the Casita Maria Center for Arts and Education in the Bronx. With students in this inaugural year of programming ranging from 3rd through 12th grade, each child is engaged in a creative, compassionate, and hands-on experience, devoted to inspiring, enlightening and empowering them both inside the classroom and out.
"Our primary goal is to advocate for, and educate, children who do not have access to the arts-
particularly dance and dance education," explains Andrea Ziegelman, founder and President of Accent Dance NYC. Open access to the arts, especially dance education, should be a part of every child's upbringing, no matter his or her background or family situation, and on a level playing field with learning in math, language arts, and science."
Accent Dance NYC's mission stresses the critical importance of arts education to the intellectual, physical, and emotional development of every child, while being culturally responsive to the particular needs of the communities it serves, and expanding the potential for inner-city youth to think critically, communicate effectively, and seek future vocation in the arts, instilling hope in the children and their families, no matter their circumstances.
Accent Dance NYC further supports the rich cultural heritage of diverse communities by partnering with local arts organizations. Upcoming Accent Dance NYC community performances will be held at the Poe Visitor Center on April 12th and the Bronx Heritage Music Center on June 15. The organization's artists have created, and will continue to create, original dance and musical repertory tailored to its adult and young audiences.
Accent Dance NYC is committed to bringing dance education to the children and families of the city's five Boroughs and neighboring areas. Through a unique collaboration, a team of multidisciplinary, multicultural artists have built a dance-based curriculum that champions diversity, connects communities, and celebrates a common human bond. Accent Dance NYC's top-tier performers and teachers are building bridges through the universal mediums of movement and music, while bolstering cognitive skills, discipline, learning and communication among the children and families they serve. In its inaugural year, Accent Dance has reached over 1,000 school-aged children with its dance programming, impacting the younger generation to move, dance, and dream.