Local Studio to be Featured in Dance Chicago

From The News-Gazette, November 2, 2002, Section B-5

CHICAGO – The Christine Rich Dance Studio in Urbana will be featured in three separate programs at the upcoming Dance Chicago festival.

Last year the studio appeared in one Dance Chicago program, Dance Slam. This year Dance Chicago artistic Director John Schmitz invited the company back to perform in three programs: Jazz Rhythms, Dance For Kids, Too! and New Dances.

“Christine is an up and coming choreographer,” he said. “We have a program and a number of different avenues to feature choreographers who are rising in the scene.”

Now in its eighth year, Dance Chicago opens Saturday and runs for five weeks at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport Ave.

It will feature 250 acts by 2,500 artists including major companies such as the Joffrey Ballet and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and new, smaller dance companies as well as independent artists.

The “Dance for Kids, Too!” program will feature Rich’s 6-minute piece, “Rainforest” that features a boy and three girls ranging in age from 10 to 12 from Rich’s studio as well as two professional dancers based in Chicago.

Rich’s other pieces in Dance Chicago will be “Cloud 10” in the “Jazz Rhythms” program. It features two younger dancers from Rich’s studio and two professionals from Chicago.

“Parenthesis” will be in two programs, “Jazz Rhythms” and “New Dances.”

Before moving to Urbana, Rich, who grew up in Normal, acted in films opposite Tom Berenger and Danny DeVito, in the TV series “Quantum Leap” and other network drama and comedies. She danced in many awards/variety shows, including the “Motown 25th Anniversary Special.”

Rich also modeled in New York, starred in fitness videos there, designed her own fitness equipment and licensed it to an international equipment manufacturer, Tunturi.

She holds a patent for “Miracle Band” and her exercise methods.

She later decided to focus on teaching dance and in 1993 founded the Christine Rich Studio in Urbana.

For information on Dance Chicago, visit its Web site at www.dancechicago.com.

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