For the sixth year in a row, Lula Washington Dance Theatre offered a full day of dance performances; dance classes; children’s play areas; booths; free food giveaways; a fitness work-out session; and special events as part of its annual Dance All Day!!! festival.
The event happened outside in the Dance Theatre’s parking lot at the same time as the Taste of Soul Street Festival on Crenshaw Boulevard. Thousands attended Dance All Day!!! throughout the day. People flowed in from Crenshaw Boulevard and then back out again, and then returned to see more performances.
Free fresh fruits and vegetables were passed out to audience members courtesy of Melissa’s Fresh Produce, which provides special-delivery foods for special events and households.
Throughout the day, audience members got up out of their seats and got on stage to move with the performers and have a good time. Lula Washington’s “Super Bad!” to James Brown music, had viewers up and moving alongside her company dancers.
Youthful viewers joined to perform in the Festival of Tutu’s for blooming ballet dancers; and older audience members got up on stage to join the Chicago Steppers, who teach classes at Lula Washington Dance Theatre.
Special guest offerings included a work-out with celebrity fitness guru “Dion The Trainer” and a dynamic music concert by blues guitarist/singer Gregg Wright and his band. Gregg Wright, who performs at major music festivals around the world, said it is important for African-American audiences and youth to know their heritage in the blues, and “reclaim it!”
Guest dance artists included Louise Reichlin’s Los Angeles Choreographers and Dancers; Gema Sandoval’s Danza Floricanto; the Audubon Middle School cheerleader squad; the Black Diamond cheerleaders; Debbie Allen’s Dance Academy; Maura Townsend’s Project 21; Encore Dance Company; the Vonda Harr Performing Arts Center (pictured at top of page); Rubanks Rouges Dance Company; and Eule Dance.
Guest company, Encore, featured dancers who were all over 50 years old, and led by a 69-year-old dancer doing Michael Jackson steps.
Children had a great time jumping in a bouncer and exploring through an air filled maze.
The event was headed by LWDT’s Associate Director, Tamica Washington-Miller, with a team of volunteers managing the days events, including Joni Parker and Clarissa Grisby, Carrie McElwee, Melani DeGuzman and others.