FDU’s WAMFEST 2022: Hispanic Heritage Month, Jazz and Dance
Fairleigh Dickinson University’s School of the Arts presents WAMFEST 2022 on October 10 and 12 at the Florham Campus. WAMFEST is sponsored by Arts & Culture Collaborative, Dance Connections, Morris Arts. All events are free of charge and open to the public, but reservations are required.
October 10 will feature a special outdoor concert on the library lawn to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month by Richard Baratta’s Gotham City Latin Jazz. In the event of rain, it will be held on October 11.
Renowned Hollywood executive producer Richard Baratta has worked on some of the highest-grossing films in recent years, including “Joker” (2019), which was one of the highest-grossing R-rated movies of all time and one of the top 10 highest-grossing films in 2019. He was also an executive producer on Martin Scorsese’s recent film, “The Irishman,” and he co-produced “Wolf of Wall Street” and “Across the Universe” and has worked on five Spider-Man movies, as well as “Big” and “Working Girl,” to name just a few of his many credits. In 2019, Baratta delivered the Commencement address at Fairleigh Dickinson University and received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts. Baratta first visited FDU’s Florham Campus in 2019 while serving as an adviser for Aaron Sorkin’s Academy Award-nominated film, “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” which was partially filmed on campus. A talented musician as well, Baratta is now focusing heavily on his musical career. View Baratta’s full list of credits on IMDB and an introductory video.
On October 12 at 6 p.m., Marta Renzi will give a lecture on the topic of dance on film. Renzi has made more than 50 dances for her project company and has created work for groups across the U.S. and abroad. In 1992, she received a New York Dance & Performance Award for her dance “Vital Signs,” and in 1995 was the first recipient of a Dancing in the Streets award as “a fearless explorer of all manner of unconventional sites, integrating art into everyday life.” She was a 2013 Bogliasco fellow at the Liguria Study Center for Arts & Humanities and received a 2015 CSA grant from Rivertown Artists Workshop. Renzi has taught in Chile and Paraguay through the International Linkages program of the American Dance Festival and is a seven-time recipient of Choreographic Fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Carolyn Dorfman Dance and New Jersey Ballet will perform at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. Post-performance talk-backs will be moderated by Renzi and Anita Rivers, executive director of community relations at Fairleigh Dickinson University.
Carolyn Dorfman Dance connects life and dance in bold, athletic and dramatic works by Carolyn Dorfman and nationally renowned choreographers. The company’s ten multi-ethnic and stunning dancers tap their unique talents to present high-energy and technically demanding dance that unleashes the powerful storytelling and imagery of its visionary creator. This distinctive combination takes audiences on intellectual and emotional journeys that ultimately illuminate and celebrate the human experience. This is contemporary dance that moves you to think, feel, laugh, cry and engage.
For more than half a century, New Jersey Ballet has thrilled audiences from Bergen to Cape May with top quality professional ballet and has given hundreds of thousands of adults and children their first introduction to ballet and inspired in many a lifelong love of the arts.
The founding of New Jersey Ballet created a profound change in the cultural landscape of New Jersey. Over the years, New Jersey Ballet has brought the magic of dance theatre to countless students, little children, senior citizens and adults of all ages. During its 26 week season, New Jersey Ballet performs a variety of works from classical, contemporary and jazz ballet at 10 venues throughout the state, and has toured nationally and around the world.
WAMFest is an annual series of readings, interviews, talks, and performances hosted by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s School of the Arts. WAMFest brings successful artists of various art genres to the campus to inspire and inform students and the community. Past guests have included Bruce Springsteen, Robert Pinsky, Roseanne Cash, Eugene Mirman, Jonathan Demme, Talib Kweli, Mark Morris, Neil Gaiman, Ice-T, Sean Astin, Chita Rivera, Laverne Cox, and Andrew Braugher.