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Dance for Parkinson's

Free Movement Classes for People Affected by Parkinson's Disease

Wednesdays, 11:15 am - 12:30 pm.  Offered in association with the Mark Morris Dance Group's Dance for PD Program.

Dance for PD is a collaboration between the Mark Morris Dance Group and the Brooklyn Parkinson Group, a chapter of the National Parkinson Foundation.  The Dance for PD teaching method is built on one fundamental premise: professionally-trained dancers are movement experts whose knowledge is useful to persons with PD.  Dancers know all about stretching and strengthening muscles, and about balance and rhythm.  Most importantly, dancers know how to use their thoughts, imagination, eyes, ears and touch to control their movements.  While dancing, whether in chairs, at a barre, or standing, everyone in the class explores comfortable dance movements in an enjoyable, non-pressured, social environment in which live music energizes, enriches and empowers. 

These classes are appropriate for anyone with PD, no matter how advanced.  No dance experience is required.  The classes combine elements of modern dance, ballet, tap, social dancing, and Mark Morris company repertoire to create an enjoyable, stimulating, artistic experience for people with PD.  The method has been presented at the International Congress for Parkinson’s™ in Berlin (2005) and the World Parkinson Congress in Washington, D.C. (2006).  Articles about the class have appeared in Neurology Now, among other publications.  All classes include live musical accompaniment. 

About the instructors:

   MARIKA BRUSSEL trained on scholarship at the Joffrey Ballet School.  She has danced professionally with companies including Ballet Theater of New Mexico, Napoles Ballet Theatre, and Alameda Ballet. 

DAMARA GANLEY graduated from UC Santa Cruz with degrees in Anthropology, Women's Studies, and Theater Arts.  She had the honor of dancing with the Mel Wong Dance Company, Carol Kueffer, and Mark Franko, and  performs currently with Joe Goode Performance Group and Project Bandaloop.

MEGAN LOW danced professionally at San Francisco Ballet where she danced the title role in Mark Morris' full-length "Sylvia," among many others.  She earned her B.A. at St. Mary's College and her Master's in Education at UC Berkeley.  She is a Core Faculty member and Coordinator for SMC's LEAP Program.

SUSAN WEBER danced professionally with the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company in New York, has assisted Mark Morris on projects at San Francisco Ballet, teaches at the University of California at Berkeley and is Associate Artistic Director at Berkeley Ballet Theater.   She graduated with honors and earned her M.A. at UCLA.

PDSF Network creates opportunities that engage, empower, and encourage the physical and emotional well-being of the PD Community. or (415) 285-7377