Pipers, Dancers Invited to Weekend of Highland Arts
The Scottish arts are alive and well at Alma College. On Nov. 6 and 7, the first official Weekend of Highland Arts will be held on campus.
During the festivities, highland dancers and pipers will collaborate to present a show. In addition, dancing and piping workshops and a dance competition are scheduled.
Highland dancers on the Remick Heritage Center stage.
The registration deadline for the dance competition and piping clinics is Oct. 23.
Click here for the registration form and more information about the Alma College Piping Clinic.
Click here for the registration form and information about the Indoor Highland Dance Competition.
Alma piping instructor Andrew Duncan says while the piping portion of the event has a variety of courses from which to choose, each piper is in good hands.
“Our guest instructors are highly sought after as both teachers and judges,” he says. “Ken Eller, who is one of the instructors, has taught and judged on pretty much every continent, including Scotland, where he has judged the World Pipe Band Championships. Barry Conway is the pipe major of one of the premier bands in the country, and I am actively involved in piping both as a teacher and solo and band competitor.”
Kate DeGood, the current United States Inter-regional Highland Dance Champion, is an instructor for the dance workshop. She says it’s a great opportunity for highland dancers to receive instruction from teachers outside of their home studio.
“It’s always helpful to get a different perspective and to hear corrections presented in a different way,” says the 2007 Alma graduate. “I am still dancing and competing, so I can provide a firsthand perspective of what corrections I focus on when dancing a step and what exercises I do to improve strength and technique.”
While the dances stay the same, the Scottish Official Board announces a new set of championship steps every year, so highland dancers must practice to perfect these steps.
“This is a really fun time of the year to teach because they’re learning these new steps,” says DeGood. “Several will dance them for the first time in competition during the Weekend of Highland Arts.”
Duncan says he shares in this excitement.
“Because of our involvement in the Highland arts, we have all made lifelong friends and had experiences that we’ll remember for the rest of our lives,” he says. “Hopefully this event will have the same effect on those who participate.”
Posted: Fri, October 8th, 2010 at 2:06PM