Student awarded the Fulbright Fellowship

By
May 1, 2003

Mills College graduate student Justine Lemos is packing her bags and preparing her home for a journey far away from the comforts of Oakland. She is embarking on a trip that will bring her closer to the traditional dance she has been performing and studying for a long time. She will be traveling to India next September as one of few who have been granted a Fulbright fellowship to study dance in India for ten months.

” I am thrilled to have the opportunity,” said Lemos.

Lemos, a master degree candidate in the Dance department, will attend Kerala Kalamandalam, an institute for performance arts in the state of Kerala, India.

Dance professor Kathleen McCormick said, ” I am very proud of Justine’s work.”

Lemos visited Kerala Kalamandalam and viewed a performance of Mohiniyattam dance in 2000. The performance inspired her to learn the Mohiniyattam form, which is a traditional form of classical Indian dance.

Lemos has been studying classical Indian Odissi dance in the United States since 1996 with professor Ranjanaa Devi. This grant will allow her to finally study in India.

Though a different type of dance than Odissi, Mohiniyattam and Odissi have similarities. Both types of dance are feminine forms of classical Indian dance, though the styles are distinct there form are similar. Lemos is interested in the comparative study between oddisi and Mohiniyattam forms.

According to Lemos, going to India would be a completion of a process. She feels that being fully immersed in the Indian culture will help her to understand the dance and culture.

” I have been to India two times, but I never had a lot of time,” said Lemos, ” I have studied Hindi but have never lived there.”

Lemos hopes that this experience will help her in her role as a teacher. She is interested in dance anthropology and ethnography, which she describes as the study of culture through the study of movement.

” To truly understand Indian performance art is crucial to my development as an artist that I have the opportunity to live and study dance in India,” said Lemos. ” It is so connected to religion and ritual.”

The Fulbright grant will allow her and her husband Grady to live in India. The fellowship is awarded through a highly application process.

On campus Lemos has been very active in the dance department. She has taught several dance classes on the Odissi form and has spoken on traditional Indian dance in lecture classes. McCormick said that Lemos’s knowledge of the Odissi form has enriched the department.

” She has continued her support from the dance department in her activities and at the same time has enriched the department with her knowledge of the form,” said McCormick.

“She is an outstanding person and I have learned a great deal from her.”

By Corinne Sklar

Mills College graduate student Justine Lemos is packing her bags and preparing her home for a journey far away from the comforts of Oakland. She is embarking on a trip that will bring her closer to the traditional dance she has been performing and studying for a long time. She will be traveling to India next September as one of few who have been granted a Fulbright fellowship to study dance in India for ten months.

” I am thrilled to have the opportunity,” said Lemos.

Lemos, a master degree candidate in the Dance department, will attend Kerala Kalamandalam, an institute for performance arts in the state of Kerala, India.

Dance professor Kathleen McCormick said, ” I am very proud of Justine’s work.”

Lemos visited Kerala Kalamandalam and viewed a performance of Mohiniyattam dance in 2000. The performance inspired her to learn the Mohiniyattam form, which is a traditional form of classical Indian dance.

Lemos has been studying classical Indian Odissi dance in the United States since 1996 with professor Ranjanaa Devi. This grant will allow her to finally study in India.

Though a different type of dance than Odissi, Mohiniyattam and Odissi have similarities. Both types of dance are feminine forms of classical Indian dance, though the styles are distinct there form are similar. Lemos is interested in the comparative study between oddisi and Mohiniyattam forms.

According to Lemos, going to India would be a completion of a process. She feels that being fully immersed in the Indian culture will help her to understand the dance and culture.

” I have been to India two times, but I never had a lot of time,” said Lemos, ” I have studied Hindi but have never lived there.”

Lemos hopes that this experience will help her in her role as a teacher. She is interested in dance anthropology and ethnography, which she describes as the study of culture through the study of movement.

” To truly understand Indian performance art is crucial to my development as an artist that I have the opportunity to live and study dance in India,” said Lemos. ” It is so connected to religion and ritual.”

The Fulbright grant will allow her and her husband Grady to live in India. The fellowship is awarded through a highly application process.

On campus Lemos has been very active in the dance department. She has taught several dance classes on the Odissi form and has spoken on traditional Indian dance in lecture classes. McCormick said that Lemos’s knowledge of the Odissi form has enriched the department.

” She has continued her support from the dance department in her activities and at the same time has enriched the department with her knowledge of the form,” said McCormick.

“She is an outstanding person and I have learned a great deal from her.”

be performing something well-known.”

Berman emphasized that from the acting and the lighting, to the music and the costumes, this is a student-run production under the guidance of faculty. According to Berman, this is about the 20th time the Rehearsal and Performance class has put on a campus play. And each year, depending on the size, interests and abilities, the resulting play varies. “I try to get a sense of what might be best for that particular group,” said Berman.

Another significant marker of this play is its relation to the elimination of the dramatic arts department. “It’s the second to last one of these,” said Rikard, referring to the fact that next year’s performance at this time will be the department’s final production.

Although Berman is not sure what he will direct for the final, and what he called a momentous occasion, he spoke of wanting to go out with a bang.

According to Theatre Production Specialist Angela J. Henderson, there will be a total of three productions next year and the first will be an elaborate performance of Shakespeare’s “Timon of Athens.”

“The idea is that it will be huge. The only limit of casting is in the number of people that will fit into the dressing room,” she said.

Drama Department Head Gemma Whelan will direct the second production, a version of Anton Chekhov’s “Dancing at Lughnasa.”

For now, Berman and the class look forward to their long-awaited performance and seemed glad to be working with Wilde’s classic.

“When you have a play that’s well written, it’s fun to do,” added Berman.


Student awarded the Fulbright Fellowship was published on May 1, 2003 in News

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