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Making Moves flyer available at:

JCAL Executive Director Phillip Willis (centre) is pictured with JCAL Board Member Dawn Skeete Walker (left) and Cuban singer Xiomara Laugart during the 2010-2011 season.
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NEW YORK (September 1, 2011) – In an homage to the “Queen of Soul” music Aretha Franklin, a celebrated troupe will celebrate the diva’s music through modern dance.
The Vissi Dance Theater will present their novel interpretations of the music legend’s classics at the Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC) in Jamaica, Queens on Saturday, September 17, 2011.
The creative choreography will be featured at the second annual “Making Moves Dance Festival” which will introduce audiences to a diverse group of performers, including the NEVILLE Dance Theatre, Yoo & Dancers, and the Balance Dance Theatre at JPAC’s state-of-the-art multi-million dollar facility.
During the festival, Vissi Dance Theater will present “Queen”, an original work commissioned by JPAC and a tribute to the music of the legendary singer and musician Aretha Franklin.
The dancers, under the direction and choreography of Courtney Ffrench – JPAC’s newly appointed general manager – will perform to original studio recordings as well as to live recorded performances of the music icon.
To warm up the audiences, “Making Moves”, supported by the Mertz Gilmore Foundation, will treat members of the Queens community to a free outdoor matinee dubbed “Rain” from 4 to 5 p.m followed by the official festival which gets underway at 7 p.m. in the theater.
The Jamaica Performing Arts Center’s 2011-2012 season, which begins next month at 153-10 Jamaica Avenue, is supported in part by Astoria Federal Savings, with in-kind support from Arizona Beverages.
Tickets for the festival are $15 for adults and $12 for seniors and children under 12 years old. Prices will be $3 more at the door.
To order tickets and for further information, visit or call (718) 618-6170.
The Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning and the Jamaica Performing Arts Center are housed landmark buildings owned by the City of New York.
About Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL)
For almost 40 years, the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL) has served as an arts oasis in a section of New York City where cultural opportunities are extremely limited. Created in 1972 as part of an effort to revitalize Jamaica, JCAL has earned a reputation for inspiring youth to take an interest in the arts, showcasing the talents of up-and-coming local artists and performers, and creating dynamic multicultural programs and workshops that have been embraced by the community. Each year, tens of thousands of visitors of all ages, backgrounds and skill sets pass through its doors to attend classes and workshops, view art exhibitions, attend performances or immerse themselves in an art residency.
For further information, visit
About Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC)
Jamaica Performing Arts Center (JPAC) is a mid-size, multipurpose performance venue housed in a completely renovated 1858 landmark building – the former First Reformed Dutch Church of Jamaica. JPAC is a showcase for local, regional and national artists and performers. This beautiful 400-seat theater is surrounded by stained glass windows giving the space an almost ethereal quality. State-of-the-art lighting and sound systems enhance the experience all the more. JPAC is destined to become one of the premier destination spots in New York City for intimate concerts and other performances. Visit for more information.