Why Greek Fest Meant So Much To Local Bellydancers

Jun 30, 2016
Maeve Hammond, WMUK

Earlier this summer, the organizers of Kalamazoo’s Greek Fest announced that next year the event would be much, much smaller. The large downtown festival would now become a sit down charity dinner for only a thousand people. For many in Kalamazoo, Greek Fest is their first - or only - exposure to belly dance. Local belly dancers say teaching people about this cultural dance helps to keep it alive. 

Courtesy Wellspring/Cori Terry and Dancers

If you got to a dance production, you’re likely seeing the vision of one artist: a choreographer, with occasionally help from a few others. But for the first time, Kalamazoo’s Wellspring/Cori Terry and Dancers is trying something much different. It’s bringing together three different artists: electric violinist Ritsu Katsumata, shadow theater artist Paddy Aidan, and Wellspring artistic director and choreographer Cori Terry. Together, they’ve created a chaotic, sensory multimedia experience called mistfreezemeltsteam.

At rehearsal for Ballet Arts Ensemble's spring concert
Rebecca Thiele, WMUK

On March 28th, Ballet Arts Ensemble will do a very special performance of Paquita—a popular ballet about a poor young Spanish woman who saves a French officer’s life and discovers her noble roots.

Claire Amat and Michael Artrip during rehearsals for Cinderella
Rebecca Thiele, WMUK

The Ballet Arts Ensemble will perform the ballet Cinderella at Chenery Auditorium in Kalamazoo, Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Wellspring/Corri Terry & Dancers

Last November, Wellspring/Cori Terry & Dancers premiered their collaboration Old World New with the Red Sea Pedestrians. Now the dance troupe is performing live with Grand Valley State University's New Music Ensemble this weekend in their new program Orbit.