Press Release - Office of College Advancement

This press release was submitted to the Community College League of California for their Winter Newsletter.

Ohlone College Hosts Shanghai Dancers in Premiere U.S. Performance

Fremont, CA—November 16th and 17th community members in the Ohlone College area were delighted to witness the outstanding performances of 26 dancers from China who came to Fremont as part of an educational exchange program between Ohlone and the Shanghai Theatre and Dance Academy, one of the most prestigious arts universities in China.

Ohlone College President Dr. Doug Treadway began the educational exchange process two years ago, hosting a group of educators from China and later sending a group from Ohlone on a return trip to meet with several educational institutions in China. While visiting in Shanghai, Dr. Treadway spoke with the highly renowned Dean of the College of Dance at Shanghai, Professor Ling Gui Ming and upon learning that they had never visited the United States, Treadway immediately extended them an invitation to visit the U.S., with Ohlone as their host.

Entrance to the Shanghai Academy is highly competitive. Dancers who are accepted into the program receive years of concentrated training in both traditional Chinese dance forms and western classical dance movement, especially ballet and modern dance. The blending of the two dance forms, combined with innovative choreography, costumes, lighting, and the skill of the dancers created an unforgettable visual impression. Ohlone College intends to reciprocate by sending dancers to China on an exchange visit in May 2007.

In between the two performances the dancers put in hours of rehearsal time but still managed to engage in several cultural exchanges with Ohlone students that gave them a picture of the diverse cultural influences in the Ohlone district. The students were treated to a traditional Thanksgiving dinner and attended a hip-hop class where they got to try a new dance style. On their last night the students visited the home of an Afghani-American family whose two daughters attend Ohlone and were treated to an amazing feast of Afghani food.

When asked about their favorite activities, the students reported that shopping in the U.S. was most exciting, especially at Costco. Their favorite purchases? Chocolate and vitamins.

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