The Purchase College School of the Arts Conservatory of Dance were be visited by a delegation from Beijing China on Thursday, September 16 to finalize an agreement for an ongoing relationship between Purchase College and the Beijing Dance Academy. A formal signing ceremony will took place at 5 PM in the Student Service Building in Room SSB227.
Purchase College President Thomas J. Schwarz and President Li Xu of the Beijing Dance Academy signed the document which established an agreement between the two institutions for student exchanges. It is anticipated that this will set a precedent for other exchanges.
The delegation from the Beijing Dance Academy including its President Li Xu will met during the day for discussions with President Schwarz and Purchase staff and faculty members. The visitors saw Conservatory dance classes, the Neuberger Museum of Art and The Performing Arts Center on their campus tour.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We are honored to welcome the visiting scholars from the Beijing Dance Academy and look forward to our joint endeavor. The relationship between the Conservatory of Dance and the most prestigious dance academy in China represents an exciting and innovative merging of the visions of training and creativity from two sides of the world. We hope this is the beginning of many future collaborations between our two institutions,Ã¢â‚¬Â said President Schwarz.
The agreement with Beijing Dance Academy is the result of two years of discussions and visits to China by Carol Walker Dean Emeritus of the Conservatory of Dance. In 2008 President Schwarz and Provost Damian Fernandez asked her to explore educational relationship possibilities with Beijing institutions as an extension of a strategic commitment to the internationalization of the College. She visited seven schools, colleges and universities in and around Beijing.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Beijing Dance Academy is the premiere institution for dance training in China,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Carol Walker. Ã¢â‚¬Å“It has over 50 years of graduating classes in classical ballet, classical Chinese dance, Chinese traditional dance, dance studies and choreography and modern dance. Its alumni head the dance programs at many other colleges and universities in China. While several institutions were very interested in associating with Purchase, the Beijing Dance Academy is the most aligned with the Conservatory of Dance in mission and training objectives. We were very interested in forging a relationship with the school,Ã¢â‚¬Â she said.
The Purchase Dance Corps performed at the Bejing Dance Academy in 1995 as part of an International Festival of Dance Academies. Carol Walker was invited in 2004 to make a presentation at an international dance forum and twice this summer for international conferences. In 2009, at the behest of President Schwarz, Ms. Walker returned to Beijing and began discussions with Beijing Dance Academy about a future relationship.
Exchange agreements were finalized under the direction of Deirdre Sato, Director of international Programs at Purchase.
Participants in the Beijing Delegation visit included:
From Beijing Dance Academy
President Li Xu
Jia Anlin, chair of Dance Studies Department
Yong Ou, director of Dance Studies Department
Ping Xin, Professor of Dance Studies Department
Pan Li, Professor of Dance Studies Department
Tian Tian, Dance Teacher
Wang Xin, Dance Teacher
From Purchase College
President Thomas J. Schwarz
Provost Damian Fernandez
Ken Tabachnick, Dean, School of the Arts
Deirdre C. Sato, Director of International Programs
Carol K. Walker, Professor, Conservatory of Dance, International Programs
Rosanna Seravalli, Professor, Conservatory of Dance, ballet
Bettijane Sills, Professor, Conservatory of Dance, ballet
Ted Kivitt, Associate Professor, Conservatory of Dance, ballet
Kazuko Hirabayashi, Professor, Conservatory of Dance, MFA & choreography
Larry Clark, Associate Professor, Conservatory of Dance, modern dance
Stephanie Tooman, Associate Professor, Conservatory of Dance, modern dance
Rozalind Newman, Conservatory of Dance, composition
Renqiu Yu, Professor, History
Sara Connolly, Study Abroad Advisor