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This week’s edition!

Registration open for BDF’s summer Youth Arts Program

Youth Arts Program participants perform "Moving in the Moment" during the 2016 Bates Dance Festival. (Blake Caple/Bates Dance Festival)

Youth Arts Program participants perform “Moving in the Moment” during the 2016 Bates Dance Festival. (Photo by Blake Caple/Bates Dance Festival)

The Bates Dance Festival will offer its annual three-week Youth Arts Program on the campus of Bates College in Lewiston from July 17 through August 5. The program provides high-quality arts experiences by bringing kids together with master artists in residence at the festival. Students at all levels of experience are invited to participate. The only prerequisites are enthusiasm for the arts and a willingness to try new things. 

YAP takes place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and will enroll 60 students in grades 2-10. Students are divided into three age groups: grades 2 and 3, 4 through 6, and 7 through 10. Each group takes daily classes in dance, music, theater, visual arts and storytelling. A healthy lunch and snacks are provided. 

The discounted early-bird fee, available through April 12, is $675. Thereafter, the program costs $750. A limited number of scholarships are available for qualified low-income students on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information, call the Bates Dance Festival at 786-6381 or see

Research shows that training in the arts improves academic learning and test scores, increases self-discipline and promotes understanding of diverse cultures. And on top of all that, it’s fun! Now in its 24th year, YAP enhances self-confidence and opens new avenues of expression for participants, who learn a dynamic range of modern, ballet, hip hop and social dance styles, experience music from around the world, learn theater games, and experiment with visual art techniques and writing poetry.

The program includes special master classes taught by internationally renowned artists in residence at the Bates Dance Festival. In addition, scholarship students receive complimentary tickets to selected festival performances. Culminating the program, YAP students will create and stage a special production based on the theme “Better Together,” to be performed Saturday, August 5 in the college’s Alumni Gymnasium as part of the Bates Dance Festival’s Finale Concert.

Returning as co-directors of the program are Priscilla Rivas and Terrence Karn, who will teach classes along with Rob Flax, Patrick Ferreri, Annalyn Lehnig, Yvonne Hernandez and Dana Reed. 

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