A feature in the latest issue of CalArts magazine, draws excerpts from a mini-reunion between Assistant Dean of The Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance, instructor Laurence Blake, who will celebrate his 30th year at the Institute in 2012 and alumna Linda Cevallos (BFA 89). In the piece, the two reminisced about CalArts and their respective dance careers.
This is the second in a series of faculty-alumni "reconnects"—the first featured the School of Theater's Fran Bennett and Michole Brianna White (Theater BFA 91).
Blake, originally hired in 1982 by then dance dean Cristyne Lawson, had previously spent six years as a dancer with the Joffrey Ballet. He continues to teach four classes in ballet technique and a men's class in addition to blogging about dance alumni as well as his administrative duties.
When she first came to CalArts, Cevallos had already been dancing flamenco professionally—most notably with her sister Sandra in Charo's stage act—but didn't have experience in either modern dance or ballet.
In the magazine, she credits CalArts faculty like Blake for prepping students for the real world:
... I was ready for everything and anything. If we did a technique across the floor before we did a jazz combination, I was ready because I'd had four years of strict ballet. I left like there was nothing I couldn't do. What carried me through every single audition were the modern and the ballet, because if you didn't have that foundation, you were cut immediately. What else do you want students to take away from your classes?
Here's a sampling of that CalArts influence in Cevallos' dance and directorial reel: