Cathy Quides Featured in PD Active Newsletter

Our own Cathy Quides was featured in the PD Active Newsletter,

writing about her experience of dNaga’s show at SOMArts in May. Below is her article.

Danspace June 4 2016-0431

Cathy Quides

Photo Credit: Matt Haber

 

Reflections By Cathy Quides

“This past May, I had the privilege of performing with four other dancers with Parkinson’s and 12 dancers without Parkinson’s, all of us members of dNaga, a multicultural troupe of dancers ages 9 to 76 years. Claudine Naganuma, who brought the production together beautifully, choreographed and directed us in a series of ensemble dances that began with human rights themes and concluded with Proteinology, a set of dances sharing the challenges, tenacity and wisdom of people living with Parkinson’s.

At the end of each performance, the audiences celebrated us with tears, cheers, and applause, giving me pride in our courage to perform with dignity and heart despite stubborn movement challenges. I felt a special sense of camaraderie with my fellow dancers with Parkinson’s that grew out of our shared experiences – first as students in Claudine’s Dance for PD® class where we practice skills that help us move and balance our bodies in space, then as members of dNaga. Our younger dancers also danced their hearts out and lifted us not only with their spirit but, when we needed it, with their hands. This to and fro between the generations is nurtured when we elders share our wisdom and experience with the younger dancers during discussions that are an integral part of rehearsals.

Dancing with dNaga has enriched my life in countless ways. I invite you to come to a Thursday class, or explore the dNaga website to learn more.”

 

About Claudine

Claudine Naganuma (Choreographer/Teacher) received a liberal arts education from Dominican College, earning a BA degree in English Literature. She studied Early Childhood Education while she earned an MFA in Dance from Mills College in Choreography and Performance(1992). Claudine taught at Aurora Elementary School in the fourth/fifth grade classroom and at La Escuelita in a sixth grade classroom doing a fall semester empowerment workshop. She is currently a ballet teacher and Director of Danspace and its Dance for PD® program since 2007. Claudine served as the Artistic Director of Asian American Dance Performances for twelve years. There, she had the opportunity to curate and produce Asian Pacific Islander (API) dance makers and lead its resident dance company, Unbound Spirit. Together with San Francisco Community Arts Organizations, the Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center was founded to support contemporary API work. As a choreographer, Claudine has received a Young Presenters award from Jacob’s Pillow, a Jack Loftis and Vibeke Strand Honorary Fellowship as a Djerassi Artist in Resident. She was also selected as an international exchange artist between the Hong Kong Fringe Club and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. Claudine’s work was recently filmed as part of Dave Iverson’s documentary Capturing Grace. Her choreography set on the Mark Morris Dance Group’s Youth Company along with members of the Brooklyn Parkinson Group and dNaga performed at the World Parkinson Congress in September 2016. Claudine’s untiring dedication to the community is further evidenced by her GIRL project, now in its fourth year. This is a free art and empowerment workshop for middle school girls living in the San Antonio District of Oakland.

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