Thursday, September 18, 2014




Choreographer offers free dance camp

By Johnathan Silver
July 16, 2014 at 2:16 a.m.


IF YOU GO

• WHAT: M.O.V.E. Dance Camp Free Dance Day

• WHEN: 10 a.m.-noon Saturday

• WHERE: Renegade Church, 3706 N. Navarro St., Victoria

• COST: Free

• INFO: The camp is for ages 8 and older, and registration is required at prettygyrl.com.

On Saturday, money won't be a concern for girls looking to explore the art of dance with professional guidance.

Professional choreographer Dacia James-Lewis, formerly of Victoria and Galveston, has worked with R&B, hip-hop and pop artists like Usher, Jennifer Hudson and Mary J. Blige.

James-Lewis wants to provide a free dance camp geared toward girls in Victoria after having spent two years in the city and feeling a need to give back to the community. She and her company, Pretty Gyrl Productions, typically visit two cities a year to offer free camps. She didn't host a free camp when she lived in Victoria, and she has since wanted to change that.

The camp is called M.O.V.E. Dance Camp, and the acronym stands for "Maximizing Our Voice, Vision and Value Everyday."

"They need to have a dream and need to be able to implement it," the choreographer said.

She and the company want to be sources of inspiration to the girls they serve.

The group is rooted in faith, James-Lewis added.

"We want every child to dream big," she said. "And our big means to believe in God in any aspect of what you dream. ... We like to sow seeds into the future."

Instructors from James-Lewis' company are trained in various genres, including ballet, contemporary, hip-hop, step and improv. Their work has been seen in television programs, music videos, movies and during live performances with various artists, including Black Eyed Peas, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, Kanye West, Shakira and more, according to her company's website.

Girls who attend will get the opportunity for one day to experience the art of dance when they otherwise might not because of financial reasons, James-Lewis said.

"It's a pretty cool experience, and it's completely free," she said. "We're fun. We dance for everybody. Our credits are crazy."

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