GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Human rights advocate and choreographer Rossi Turner has traveled to four continents and 25 different countries to teach dance, and on Thursday, he will visit Greenburgh to share his passion for dance and theater.
At the Theodore D. Young Community Center, Turner will display a video of his 290-day "dance odyssey," a journey he began in 2009 to travel around the world and communicate with dozens of different cultures through dance.
"I used dance and theater as a bridge of communication in order to connect with people," Turner said.
The Nashville, Tenn., native connected with the community center activities and arts coordinator Norma Jean Barnes in Pittsburgh several years ago and ran into Barnes again in January at the International Association of Blacks in Dance anniversary celebration in Washington, D.C. Turner said he offered to teach a class in Greenburgh since he was traveling to New York to perform Wednesday at the New York University School of Law, where his son attends.
Turner, who has been dancing for more than 25 years, also founded the Sankofa Dance Theater in Nashville, Tenn., which received the highest performance arts rating in the state. He said he's excited to share his array of dance skills with Greenburgh residents.
"I want to connect with people to share a bit of my story," he said.
Thursday's class will be a dance and movement activity for both children and adults. Turner will be sharing a piece that he recently performed in Africa for what he calls "edu-tainment," a blend of education and entertainment. He said he hopes the class will encourage people to step outside their boundaries and learn more about other cultures.
"I hope to encourage people to get a passport and do some traveling outside the United States," he said. "Each of us are world citizens. It's incumbent upon us to do what we can to improve our relationship that we have with others."
Turner's dance class begins at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. No dance training is required to attend.