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Home » News » MFA Candidates Present Outdoor Performance, Shifting Grounds

MFA Candidates Present Outdoor Performance, Shifting Grounds

Published March 18, 2021

TALLAHASSEE, FL- Saturday, March 20, 2021 at 7:30 pm. MFA candidates Courtenay “Lian” Thorne and Leah Bailey will present an outdoor dance performance, Shifting Grounds, in partial fulfillment of the Master of Fine Arts Degree in Dance.

Courtenay “Lian” Thorne’s piece JAM is an exploration of the felt connections between two Black communities from the viewpoint of a Black Barbadian woman. This exploration is about experiencing and generating movement as a response to dances of resilience of a different culture, particularly, in this case the African American dance form jam skating. JAM is a physical reaction to how the descendants of enslaved Africans experience each others’ dances of resilience that developed as a result of slavery.

Leah Bailey’s Heartwood confronts the disconnect between ballet and the environment. Converging through film and live performance, six dancers explore balletic traditions set to music from Caroline Shaw’s Orange (2019) performed by the Attacca Quartet. In search of relevance within balletic structures, Heartwood utilizes balletic movement to communicate an urgent contemporary issue: human impact on climate change.


In accordance with Florida State University COVID-19protocols, all audience members are required to wear masks and socially distance for the entire performance. For additional guidance, please visit

For more information about the School of Dance, email La Toya Davis-Craig at, or online at The School of Dance is part of the College of Fine Arts at The Florida State University.