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University of Iowa News Release

March 16, 2004

UI Production Is Selected For National American College Dance Festival

A University of Iowa dance production is headed for the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., after judging at the central regional festival of the American College Dance Festival Association (ACDFA), March 10-13 at the University of Colorado at Boulder. "Diplomacy," choreographed by graduate student Daniel Stark and premiered at the UI Dance Company's Dance Gala 2003, was selected by festival judges for performance at the Gala Concert that was the climax of the regional festival, and was subsequently selected to represent the region at the national festival.

An ensemble of students from the UI Dance Department will perform "Diplomacy" in the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theatre during the national ACDFA, June 1-3.

In addition to having his choreography selected for the national festival, Stark was honored as the regional festival's outstanding performer. Stark, a native of Fairfax, Iowa, is an alumnus of the UI Dance Department who returned for graduate study in choreography after a professional performing career.

The festival in Boulder was one of nine regional ACDFA events leading up to the biennial national festival. More than 350 students from 24 colleges and universities participated in the central regional festival. The Gala Concert program was selected from among 36 entries, which were judged in two preliminary concerts.

In addition to "Diplomacy," the UI Dance Department was represented by Marina Fukushima's quartet, "A Melodious Scoop of Life."

The UI's strong showing at the regional festival continues a remarkable run of ACDFA success. Since 1990, productions from the UI Dance Department have been selected for every regional festival Gala Concert, and UI dances have been showcased at all but one of the biennial National College Dance Festivals.

The ACDFA, founded in 1973, says its purpose is "to support and promote the wealth of talent and creativity that is prominent throughout college and university dance departments. ACDFA's sponsorship of regional and national dance festivals provides the venue for students to engage in three days of workshops, lecture/demonstrations and master classes taught by instructors from around the region and country.

"The festivals also provide the unique opportunity for students and faculty to have their dance works adjudicated by a panel of nationally-recognized dance professionals in an open and constructive forum. Culminating with the presentation of pieces selected for their exemplary artistic quality, the festivals are the primary means for college and university dance programs to perform outside their own academic setting and be exposed to the diversity of the national college dance world."

The UI Dance Department is a unit of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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