Stars onstage: TV and movie dancers to perform at Academy of Music as part of Generation IV Dance workshop

Last modified: Thursday, October 16, 2014

Generation IV Dance, a weeklong dance intensive workshop for dancers of all ages, will conclude its fifth season with performances on Aug. 8 and 9 at 7 p.m. at the Academy of Music in Northampton. Featured onstage will be some of the commercial dance industry’s top dancers and choreographers, as well as Michelle Brooks-Thompson, a finalist on NBC’s “The Voice.” Also, students from the workshop will perform in pieces choreographed by the professional dancers, who run the classes at the workshop.

The shows at the Academy of Music are sold out.

“(The performers) showcase all their different styles, from contemporary to jazz to musical theater to tap to hip-hop,” said Alison Forance, co-founder of Generation IV. Every dancer who attends the workshop will perform in at least two numbers during the final performances, sometimes alongside the pros. “It’s basically a showcase of the faculty and all the kids that are coming for the week,” Forance said.

The workshop, with classes held at Smith College, is run by Forance, a co-owner with her sister Lisa Anthony, of the Hackworth School of Performing Arts in Easthampton, and attracts dancers from across the United States and Canada.

“It’s really just a great evening of music and dance. People that come to watch the show will see such a wide variety. They’re going to be sitting on the edge of their seats,” Forance said. “The energy and the spirit that comes from the students and the faculty is always something that leaves the audience feeling rejuvenated and alive.”

Among the dance stars to return each year to teach classes and perform is Teddy Forance, a Southampton native and son of Alison Forance. Teddy Forance, who now lives in Los Angeles, has danced with Lady Gaga, Janet Jackson, Cirque du Soleil and more. He performed on the 2010 Oscars as well as on the TV shows “Ellen,” “Good Morning America,” “American Idol” and “Dancing With the Stars.” He is a co-founder of Shaping Sound, an L.A.-based dance company, and appeared on the TV show “All the Right Moves” on the Oxygen channel, a reality show about the forming of the company.

Among the 25 faculty members this year are Randi Kemper, Chaz Buzan and Channing Cooke.

Kemper, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, has danced with Beyoncé, Chris Brown, Usher, Janet Jackson and Ciara. She has performed on the Superbowl, MTV Music Video Awards, “Saturday Night Live,” “Dancing With the Stars,” “So You Think You Can Dance” and more.

Buzan, of Scottsdale, Arizona, is Madonna’s lead dancer. He performed on her last world tour, “MDNA,” and starred in her new short film, “#SecretProjectRevolution.” He has also performed with Cirque du Soleil, Florence and the Machine during its MTV VMA performance, in Britney Spears’ “Hold It Against Me” music video and with Demi Lovato on “Dancing with the Stars.”

Cooke, a Haverhill native, was a finalist on the sixth season of “So You Think You Can Dance” and danced alongside Neil Patrick Harris in the opening number of the 82nd Academy Awards. She has also performed on “Dancing With the Stars” and has worked with artists including Jennifer Lopez, JoJo and Florence and the Machine.

For information about Generation IV Dance, visit


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