Arts for All

Choreographer Yo-El Cassell’s Movement Workshop at Boston Arts Academy

Celebrity Series of Boston is delighted to welcome dancer, choreographer and educator Yo-El Cassell to our Neighborhood Arts roster. Yo-El made his first Celebrity Series outreach visit on March 3 to the Boston Arts Academy, to the class taught by Theater Chair Juanita Rodriques. Working with 23 sophomores who will produce The Crucible in May, Yo-El introduced how movement can help actors with entry points to communicating emotion. The group explored themes central to the play, such as status, morality (good vs. evil), and the choice to move against established barriers.

Students participated in breathing, vocalization, movement and imagination exercises—both independently and within groups. Yo-El remarked that we all make choices, but directors may ask actors to make alternate choices. The culminating performance or product is the illumination of process, and it’s equally important to enjoy the journey through that process. 

Celebrity Series photographer Robert Torres joined us for this illuminating workshop. Scroll below to view a few of his favorite images from the day.

Yo-El will continue working with our Neighborhood Arts program this spring. He joins composer-percussionist Ryan Edwards in a 5-week residency with students at the Boston Community Leadership Academy this month. Ryan’s class will create a “found sound” rhythmic dance piece, to be choreographed by Yo-El and danced by their peers. You’re invited to join us for the premiere of the BCLA student work, along with performances by Masary Studios (featuring percussion and video projection) and 360º (a theater movement ensemble) on Friday, April 7, 7:30pm at Boston Community Leadership Academy, 655 Metropolitan Avenue, Hyde Park. The event is free and open to the public, though we encourage you to RSVP to reserve your seats!

More About Yo-El Cassell:
Yo-El Cassell is an inspiring and versatile dancer, choreographer and teacher. He is the Head of Movement/Assistant Professor of Movement for Boston University’s theatre department, Movement Consultant for Boston Landmarks Orchestra, and on the faculty of the Harvard Dance Center. Using different elements of movement, his teaching and choreographic endeavors stresses the importance of exploring our personal capacity for self-expression and artistry. As someone who is also hearing impaired, he holds movement to be the expressive channel of identity. He is dedicated to engaging his community through theatre and movement programming that breaks down the boundaries of access.

Images from Yo-El Cassell’s Boston Arts Academy Visit
Photos By: Robert Torres



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