DanceVersity Summer Camp : July 31 – August 11, 2017

Register now!The popular DanceVersity summer dance camp for kids and teens returns to Berkeley, California! Two weeks with four different dances every week, kids from 7 to 17 find fun in dance, music, crafts and languages. Want to know what it’s like? Watch our videos and see our photos!

DanceVersity Summer Dance Camp

  • Week 1: July 31 – August 4
  • Week 2: August 7 – 11
Schedule:  9 am – 4 pm (extended care available)

Location: Ashkenaz Music & Dance Community Center
1317 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, CA 94702

Fees: $380 per week DanceVersity Summer Camp

Register now!

More Details

Register online — pay online or send a check

  • Half-Days, extended care and discounts for multiple weeks and siblings available – please contact us
  • For more answers, see the camp FAQ page

For updates and information on Summer Dance Camp, please subscribe to our email list or Facebook group

Watch the video to see our kids dancing!

Register now!

DanceVersity Classes – Special Spring 2017 Session

Kamala Devam is teaching
beginners’ classes in an exciting martial art form from the Southern Indian state of Kerala called ‘Kalaripayattu’. This martial art is thought to be the mother of all others, including karate and kung fu, brought from India to other parts of Asia by Buddhist monks in the 4th century. 

Mondays March 6 – April 24 at Ashkenaz
8-week series

Youth 4:30 – 6:00 –  $160

Adult 6:15 – 7:30  – $130 series or $18 Drop-in

Now influencing dance choreography around the world, this martial art is beautiful and athletic, incorporating the fighting actions of animals found in India and moving in graceful, circular motions between fantastic kicks and flying jumps. Both young and adult students will become stronger, more flexible and have fun learning a new way of moving. No previous martial arts or dance experience is needed. Come, get sweaty and enjoy!

More About Kalaripayattu:

Photos Top: Vipul Sangoi; Bottom: Vikram Valluri

DanceVersity Faculty – Portsha Jefferson, Instructor

Haitian, Afro-Haitian, Haitian Folkloric Dance Teacher

portsha-jeffersonPortsha Jefferson is a professional dancer and choreographer trained in Ballet, Modern, Jazz and African derived styles, who specializes in Haitian Folkloric Dance. She began her formal training at the age of six at the Marsha Woody Dance Academy in Beaumont, Texas. Established in 2004, Ms. Jefferson is the founder and artistic director of Rara Tou Limen (RTL), an arts organization that presents Haitian music, dance & culture through classes, workshops, and performances.

bio_portsha_image1A passionate believer in education and youth development, she has worked for several youth organizations including The Young Performers Theater, The San Francisco Arts Education Project, Westlake School of the Arts, Opera Picolla, DanceVersity and Swivel Arts. Ms. Jefferson has taught creative movement and Haitian Folkloric dance in schools, universities, community centers and dance studios for twelve years.

Ms. Jefferson was a principle dancer and vocalist with Group Petit La Croix (1996-2003) under the leadership of veteran dancer and educator Blanche Brown. She has been fortunate and blessed to grace the stage with Reconnect, Ase Dance Theater Collective, Feet of Rhythm and El Wah Movement. In Haiti, she has had the privilege to perform with Compagnie Culturelle Des Arts and Ayiti Dans Ansanm (ADA). Guest performances with Afro-Cuban companies include: EMESE: Messengers of the African Diaspora, along with Jose Francisco Barroso & Obakoso.

2011-camp-afro-haitianMs. Jefferson’s dedication and exploration of Haitian culture have brought her to Haiti, where she has traveled throughout the country to research regional dance, rhythms and musical traditions since 2003. Specific interest and concentration of study took place in Gonaives at Lakou Badjo, where Nago (Yoruba) traditions are preserved, and at Tanp Souvenance Mistik, a Vodou community that celebrates it’s Rada (ancient kingdom of Dahomey) heritage. Further studies at Ecole Nationale des Arts (ENARTS), Vivian Gauthier’s School of Dance and Artcho Danse, the official dance school of internationally renowned dance troupe Ayikodans, provided a rich foundation into the Folkloric aspect of Haitian culture. Lynn Coles, Blanche Brown, Peniel Guerrier, Cadet Jean Evens, Emmanuel Louis, Metayer Frantz, Ramses Philius, Lee Hetelson and Daniel Brevil, among others, have played a key role in her artistic growth.

bio_portsha_image2Currently, Ms. Jefferson is a guest instructor/choreographer at University of California at Berkeley, Teen Dance Center in Mountain View, and is an artist in residence for Oakland, Berkeley, Richmond and SF Unified School District. In addition, she is an instructor at East Bay Dance Center, Dance Mission Theater and the Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts. She also serves as a Cultural Arts Specialist with Oakland Parks and Recreation where she continues to share her love of dance with Oakland youth.

web site

Portsha’s Student Pictures: