Women and Dance

Gillian M. Reinhard ’20

Features Editor

On Thursday, Feb. 6, in Dangremond Commons, a panel discussion, “Celebrating 50 Years of Women and Dance at Trinity,” will be held. The panel will feature Associate Professor of Theater and Dance Katharine Power, Associate Professor of Theater and Dance Lesley Farlow, Professor of Theater and Dance Judy Dworin ’70, with Assistant Professor Theater and Dance Rebecca Pappas as moderator. The discussion will focus on the history of dance at Trinity, a unique program, particularly through its  connection to Dworin. 

Dworin, the first woman to graduate from Trinity, started the dance department at the College. The creation of the department coincides with Trinity’s celebration of coeducation. As Pappas explained, dance is an interdisciplinary study at Trinity—all majors are both theater and dance majors. As Pappas explained, the curriculum, back then as it does now, incorporates study of movement–choreography–with an emphasis on community action. 

This use of community action in the dance department is reflected in its relationship with the Judy Dworin Performance Project, a longstanding arts organization in the city of Hartford, which brings dance to the community in places such as schools and prisons. As Pappas explained, community engagement and collaboration with other organizations is an important aspect of dance at Trinity.

Pappas spoke about the interesting relationship between women and dance at the collegiate level. “Historically, a lot of college dance programs were tied to women’s colleges. The connection between dance at Trinity and coeducation at Trinity is not a coincidence,” she said, highlighting the strengthening and flourishing of the arts at Trinity in the past fifty years. “Dance plays an important role in thinking about what it means to have a liberal arts education.”

The spring semester of the dance program will include Open Dance, a free mixed-level dance on Feb. 11. Additionally, the spring dance concert, featuring work by the senior class hosted throughout different spots on campus, will be held Apr. 17 and 18. 

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