Feature Events & Projects
The two-and-a-half day workshop introduces dance artists to a new movement technology for jazz, hip hop, African styles and any other dancers. It is an improvisation-as-performance practice and goes beyond freestyling. Along with the vital movement practice, the participants will engage in video reflections, journaling, and mindfulness to expand their sensory and cognitive capacities. All aspects of the intensive guide participants toward artistic growth, through intentional engagements with our bodies. On day three, the intensive culminates in a virtual synchronous performance that includes live music.
Cosmo-Ubuntu, Machine Translation, and Cognitive Code Switching
The panel proposes a philosophical intervention in machine learning and AI praxis using the concept Cosmo-uBuntu and presents the work of Masakhane as one such African solution-oriented intervention. Cosmo-uBuntu is a humane, theoretical, and solutionary approach to technological innovation and policies that address issues of global justice. The Masakhane project brings together diverse African NLP researchers who constitute an open-source, continent-wide, online research effort in machine translation for Africa’s languages. Cosmo-uBuntu as a sustainable, inclusive, and global alternative framework for understanding personhood or “human” in AI praxis expands the normative reliance on a Europeanist understanding of “human” which remains insufficient for a technological solution beyond Euro-modern worlds. The panel also highlights cultural and individual differences in direct interaction with different technology interfaces based on the cultural reading practices of non-Western and African peoples. Masakhane mobilizes AI and machine learning towards solving problems of the scarcity of public African language datasets, lack of discoverable African language resources, and impediments to African language access to advance local innovations in Africa. The project reverses the trend toward exclusively Anglophone digital futures in Africana worlds and conducts proactive restoration of African epistemologies.
Stepping With Resonance: Music & Movement As One
Dr. Wray’s current virtual projects are focused on music and dance – composition and choreography. She is the choreographic director for the Next-Fest Lab where three composers, three choreographers and 9 dancers will be exploring virtual collaborations. This is a part of the larger festival – https://next-fest.org/
Dr. S. Ama Wray joins a multidisciplinary group of practitioners and theorists exploring embodiment to strengthen human relationships.
A Movement That Expands Thinking
Join us for first International Embodiology® Immersion. 6 days of training leading to extraordinary self-realization, culminating in two transformational performances.
1st International Embodiology® Immersion.
JULY 15-20, 2019
AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, EL PASO
Calling all dancers, choreographers, freestylers, movement activists:
Vitalize your skills as a performer, choreographer and active citizen of the world.
** 6 DAYS OF EMBODIOLOGY® TRAINING
2 PUBLIC PERFORMANCES
Choreographed by Dr. S. Ama Wray
Irvine Barclay Theatre
Feb 19-22, 2019
Bringing jazz, joy and inspiration to those at the Packing House.
The “Shining Stars” Dance Organization, with the support of UC Irvine’s Claire Trevor School of the Arts, reaches out to children from all areas of Orange County through dance summer programs. We cultivate creative expression by giving our program participants an outlet for their artistic voices. We spark an interest in dance in higher education and the professional realm through workshops hosted by UCI students and dance professionals. We engage deeper thinking about critical issues in dance through discussions of body image, improvisation, and cultural dances from around the world. We build long-lasting friendships across the community by giving participants a common connection: a love for dance. Our goal is to provide a unique dance experience that positively impacts children physically, mentally, and emotionally.
About the Program
The program has two aspects: connect Orange County youth to dance in higher education and provide an opportunity for UC Irvine undergraduate dance majors to hone their teaching practice. These UCI students will undergo intensive training to serve as the program’s dance teachers and inspire the children to shoot for the stars!
The 2016 “Shining Stars” Summer Dance Program
Last summer, we hosted 58 young dancers, aged 5-12 years old, on the UC Irvine campus for a free week-long dance outreach program. This summer, we plan to host at least 100 children! We want to double our number of studios, triple the budget, double our teacher numbers, and double the number of post-program scholarships we award, which allow the recipients to take classes at the best dance studios in Orange County!
News Articles about the 2015 Program:
LA Times – “A children’s dance class also focuses on body image and self-respect”
OC Register – “UCI program allows young dancers to shine”
Daily Pilot – “They’re honing dance skills to pass them on”
Dates for 2016 Program: August 15th-20th, 2016
Interested in enrolling your child in the 2016 program?
Follow this link for the Dancer Application!
In need of financial assistance to attend due to the tuition cost?
We also have a Scholarship Application!