Amber Perkins Dancers Go Professional
Published: October 7th, 2009
By: Melissa deCordova

Amber Perkins dancers go  professional

NORWICH – Creativity, hard work and perseverance can pay off, but in the world of dance, few people are lucky enough to make it into the professional leagues.

The fact that a handful of dancers who honed their craft in the City of Norwich, and now have what it takes to profit from it, is worth celebrating.

Travis St. Denny, a 2006 Norwich High School graduate and former student of the Amber Perkins School of the Arts (APSA), will perform at the Joyce Theater Oct. 27 through Nov. 1 as a member of Garth Fagan Dance.

St. Denny was selected to join the internationally-acclaimed modern dance company after auditioning in July. He has been rehearsing for a just over a month, and performed recently at a Democratic Party fundraiser hosted by Caroline Kennedy. Following a run at the Joyce, Garth Fagan Dance is scheduled to perform the first week in December at Nazareth College.

Known as the true original and genuine leader of American modern dance, Fagan has been recognized by a host of awards and honors. For his path-breaking choreography for The Lion King, he was awarded the prestigious 1998 Tony Award for Best Choreography.

“Garth Fagan is a modern legend,” said Mikey Perkins, one of APSA’s principal choreographers. “He’s one of the greats from the 50s and 60s who made modern dance what it is. And he was Amber’s teacher at SUNY Brockport; her inspiration into modern dance.”

St. Denny, the son of Beth Kelly and Mark St. Denny of Norwich, started dancing at APSA at the age of 6. He attended the University of the Arts in Philadelphia for a year before transferring into the Alvin Ailey School Certificate program last spring.

“Trav has so much drive and passion. It is so surreal that he is dancing with the dance company of my teacher. Everything has come full circle. I am so proud to have him venturing off,” said studio owner/choreographer Amber Perkins.

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