We are over the moon about the 10th Annual Dance Parade and Festival. Though rain was predicted just a day before, it was mostly clear for the entire event. The results were smiles from the ribbon cutting at 21st and Broadway, down to the Grandstand at University and across Saint Marks to DanceFest in Tompkins Square Park.
Beginning the ceremony was a special breakdance performance by Momz in da Hood, breakdancing moms over 50, followed by a welcome address by Board Chair Erik Slavin and fellow board member Yana Landowne. Erik and Yana then introduced David Turley, Director of Constiuency Affairs for Governor Andrew Cuomo who read a letter from the Governor, congratulating everyone for celebrating diversity and culture.
Cutting the actual ribbon were 2016 Grandmarshals DJ KS360 aka Kwikstep and Anna “Rokafella” Garcia who teared up many onlookers with their passionate stories of dance–Then they rocked out their first dance parade on the leadoff float along with the Ladies of SKYY, the Legendary House of Ninja and the Tap Dance Foundation.
Wave after wave of beautiful dancers followed in an incredible array of diversity: Some of the styles presented were: Hip Hop, Ballet, Butoh, Voguing, Scottish, American Tribal, Irish Step, Electro-Pop, Modern, Techno, Bolivian Pujilay, Traditional Chinese, Indian Baharantanatyam, Jamaican Dancehall, Bellydance, Salsa, Samba, Country and Western, Flagging, Disco, Ballroom, House, Bolivian Tinkus, Bollywood, Modern, and Chinese Waist Drum Dance! Click here for the entire list of participants who danced to 81 unique styles of dance, a new record for Dance Parade and the world at large.
We welcomed many never seen before participants to the parade including the cultures from Haiti, Mikerline Dance Company, Trinidad, Scotland’s “Shot of Scotch”, Stage48’s “disOrder”, Zouk dancers, and Alice Farley’s Dance Theater to name a few. The TOAD Armada, a regular favorite sported a self driving “art car” in which the TOAD appeared to float along the street on a lily pad.
We are so grateful for this opportunity to promote expression through the art of dance and are constantly looking for ways to make improvements on the event. Dancers, we’d love to hear your thoughts on this and encourage you to fill out our brief survey!