Professors' Research Recognized by National Dance Education Organization

two dance book covers
Monday, June 20, 2022
Research by dance professors Tamara Williams and Karen Hubbard included in award recognition.

The National Dance Education Organization (NDEO) has recognized research by two UNC Charlotte dance professors in announcing the inaugural Ruth Lovell Murray Book Award. The new annual award honors "outstanding book-length publications in dance education and recognizing authors who conduct an exemplary inquiry that advances the field."

Rooted Jazz Dance: Africanist Aesthetics and Equity in the Twenty-First Century, edited by Lindsay Guarino, Carlos R.A. Jones, and Wendy Oliver, received the 2022 Ruth Lovell Murray Book Award. The book includes a chapter by recently retired Associate Professor of Dance Karen Hubbard. Hubbard’s “Valuing Cultural Context and Style: Strategies for Teaching Traditional Jazz Dance from the Inside Out" appears as Chapter 15. Hubbard came to UNC Charlotte in 1986, developing the course “Vintage Jazz,” a dance curriculum that delivers the movement vocabulary and the context of traditional jazz dance as evolving from African American culture.

Associate Professor of Dance Tamara Williams's book, Giving Life to Movement: The Silvestre Dance Technique, received an Honorable Mention "for contributing significantly to the visibility of dance education professionals and their work." It was the only other publication to receive the NDEO's recognition. In her book, Williams, who has studied extensively with Rosangela Silvestre in Brazil, situates the Silvestre dance technique within the spiritual and cultural history of African Brazilians, and in particular, the political and social mobilization of Black Brazilians in the 1970s in Bahia. She then thoroughly investigates and analyzes the theory and practice of Silvestre technique, both codifying the movement and highlighting its connection to resistance, empowerment, and healing.