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The Magic of Story Book Dance
Release Date: October 01, 2007

The Rye Arts Center announces The Magic of Storybook Dance: Original Illustrations for Children’s Books, with Costumes and Artifacts from the World of Dance. This unique exhibition, to be held at the Center from November 4th – December 15th, will focus on art created for books written and illustrated for children on many different forms of dance, including ballet, ballroom, jazz, and modern. Original paintings and drawings will be on view in the Gallery, which will feature the debut of the complete set of paintings by Susan Jeffers for her Nutcracker, due to be published this fall by Harper Collins Publishers. Elaborate costumes and props on loan from the Purchase College Conservatory of Dance, the JCC of Mid-Westchester Dance School, and the Isadora Duncan Dance Foundation will enhance the exhibit and introduce visitors to the splendor and excitement of the dance world.

Others whose works will be on view include Leo and Diane Dillon, Jules Feiffer, Rachel Isadora, Steven Kellogg, Betsy and Ted Lewin, E.B. Lewis, Patricia Polacco, Dr. Seuss, and Peter Sis, among many other illustrators. Susan Jeffers, Alyssa Capucilli, and five-time Caldecott Honor winner Brian Pinkney, whose works will also be on view, will each spend a day at the Center addressing school groups (by appointment), as well as special presentations for children in Port Chester’s Head Start and Carver Center After-School Program. In addition, renowned poet Ted Scheu will meet with school groups to discuss his work and to motivate students’ interest in reading and writing poetry.

The Rye Arts Center will offer docented tours of the exhibition as well as age-appropriate interactive demonstrations and participatory workshops. Amy Sewell, creator of Mad Hot Ballroom, will speak to school groups about the ground-breaking ballroom-dance program in public schools, which is chronicled in the film and which has recently been imported to Rye.

The Opening will take place on Sunday, November 4th from 2-5 pm and will consist of a cornucopia of multi-media events. Author Paul duBois Jacobs and dancer Jennifer Swender will offer a storytelling-and-movement workshop. Yan Burke, hip-hop teacher at the Purchase College Conservatory of Dance, will offer a workshop in this popular dance form. There will be a video montage of dance performances and films, created for this exhibit by Evan Polivy, a resident of Purchase and a student at Rhode Island School of Design. Principal Clarita Zeppie will join Ms. Sewell in introducing her Osborn School students to demonstrate ballroom dancing. Children can be photographed with costumed performers from the Purchase College Dance Corps’s Nutcracker'07 from 3-4pm, and tickets to the Purchase performances (Nov. 30 - Dec. 2) will be available at the Center throughout the afternoon. Lori Belilove's troupe of young costumed dancers from the Isadora Duncan Dance Foundation will be on hand to greet guests as well. Visitors will be able to watch artists draw at easels and to purchase books, which they can have signed by illustrators and authors present at the Opening.

The Magic of Story Book Art… is curated and chaired by Gail Harrison Roman of Harrison and Betsy Bober Polivy and Alison Wise of Purchase; and Elyse Faltz of Larchmont chairs the dance exhibits. Linda Goldstein of Rye chairs hospitality, and Deborah Boillot of Rye and Mickie Kerson of Harrison act as community liaisons. Marilyn Gasparini of Rye represents the Center’s Gallery Committee. For information: www. ryeartscenter.org; 914-967-0700 x 33.

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