Isadora Duncan Dance Company Visited P.S. 340

On Friday, May 10, Lori Belilove and the Isadora Duncan Dance Company visited P.S. 340, the school of young Duncan Dancer and McBurney YMCA member Lou Funcke-Price.

Third graders at P.S. 340 gathered into their auditorium bursting with excitement and anticipation at seeing live dancing up-close in their own school. Ms. Belilove’s connection to this Chelsea neighborhood school is through one special young dancer, Lou Funcke-Price. Lou is enrolled in Ms. Belilove’s Wednesday-afternoon Duncan Dance classes at the McBurney YMCA.

With lights dimmed and hushed whispers filling the room, Lori Belilove, a third-generation Duncan Dancer and master educator, began to paint the picture of Victorian-era rebel Isadora Duncan. As she told stories about the Greek myths that inspired Isadora, members of her company brought her words to life performing the historical dances crowned in floral wreaths and flowing tunics. Dancers Becky Allen, Faith Kimberling, and Caroline Yamada entered into the space from all sides, running through the audience to excite with the opening dance, Air Gai. The trio continued to perform a variety of duets, trios, and solos including Minute Waltz and Cymbals. The highlight of the program, however, was Lou Funcke-Price who performed a solo version of the Bach Gavotte II. The audience cheered her name, completely blown away at the talent and poise of their classmate!

Throughout the program, students of P.S. 340 were buzzing with questions and begging for more dances. As the performance wrapped up, selected students were beckoned onstage to skip through imagined outdoor landscapes, interact with one another through the passing and tossing of silk scarves, and participate in the Duncan universal gesture movements. The dance teacher at the school, Christie Newman-King remarked that the “students were enthralled and glued to every movement and word.”

Lori’s Isadora Duncan children’s dance classes are part of an ongoing series at the McBurney YMCA. Lou and her talented classmates will have an open-to-the-public showing on Wednesday, June 12 at 5pm. Family, friends, and the Y community are all welcome to attend! For YMCA members, registration for Lori’s Isadora Duncan children’s dance classes begin on August 17 and for nonmembers on August 24. The first class is September 4.

For more information contact [email protected].


Isadora Duncan Dance Foundation
141 W. 26th St., Third Floor