FARMINGTON – An internationally known break dancer will provide a challenging break-dance and physical training class for this year’s City Lights Summer Camp, director Duggan Hill said.

City Lights 6th Performing Arts Summer Camp begins June 24 at the former State Theater and Oddfellows Hall on Broadway and offers free classes in the arts to Maine children of all ages, at least about 40 of them, he said. The camp is free but it does require hard work. Registration for the camp is held from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. June 23 at 231 Broadway.

Boston City Lights is a performance and cultural center for Boston City youth. Each year, dance teachers and some city youth come to Farmington to offer performing art classes.

The camp ends July 4 with a master show planned for the night of July 3 featuring dance numbers from the ballet to hip hop classes.

A dancer, Valentine Bercirel, or more commonly known as bboy float has done four major films and worked on Broadway and regularly appears in Las Vegas, China and Japan, he said.

After starting at age 14 with City Lights, the 36-year-old and his group, Floor Lords, kept break dancing alive in Boston. Along with learning to dance at City Lights, Hill teaches students to teach what they have learned preparing bboy float to share his talent, he said.

“Float is one of the most fantastic break dancers alive,” Hill added.

But bboy float isn’t the only successful artist involved in City Lights summer camp this year. Former opera singer Jim Ryan will teach voice along with Mali Smith who’s newest music video has recently been released.

A graffiti artist known as Monk, also named Mathew Clark, will undertake a mural project with students on the Odd Fellows ballroom ceiling, Hill said. The 50- by 55-foot ceiling will be covered with a nighttime scene.

For last year’s art piece, Monk and 10 students covered the walls of the ballroom with a mural of the town’s surrounding hills, Hill said.

Former model Ashley Richardson, who performed for the New York City Ballet, will return to teach classes.

New this year, an hour class for dancers ages 4-7. This requires a parent to participate, too, he said.

Another popular class, fencing, is also offered although Hill wants participants to try each class.

Hill, who offers free classes mostly for disadvantaged youth at the Paramount Theater in Boston year-round, started offering two summer sessions in Farmington when his life partner, Tiane Donahue, took a position at the University of Maine at Farmington.

Hill and Donahue cover the cost of providing housing and feeding the group from Boston , while offering the classes at no charge to local youngsters.

More information about City Lights can be found at www.bostoncitylights.org

The local phone number is 778-9114.


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