2019: Year in Review

Linzey Rice on December 31, 2019 in About Momentum

2019: A Year in Review at Momentum-Excellence

As 2019 comes to a close and we look forward to the year ahead, a few words come to mind that define the year we leave behind– growth, partnership, joy, and excellence. In Momentum’s 17th year of engaging central Ohio children in dance, music, and performance, we pause to acknowledge the milestones, both large and small, that we celebrated in this expansive year.  

Growth

In 2019, Momentum served the greatest number of children in its 17-year history. Our programs spanned central Ohio serving Columbus City Schools, Hilliard City Schools, and two charter schools. Momentum classes were held in over 20 different elementary schools and more than 35 individual classrooms. More than 1,600 children had the opportunity to experience Momentum dance classes during their school day. 

Momentum welcomed a handful of new faces to the team this year, including 4 instructors, 2 accompanists, 2 new board members, and a new operations manager. Be sure to check out their bios on our website to learn more about the wealth of knowledge and experience all bring to Momentum. 

Amidst our programming, our staff transitions, and a new school year, Momentum also moved to a new office space at 538 East Town Street. Over the last few years, we have been lucky enough to work from office space donated in-kind thanks to the generosity of our community supporters. Our new office space represents a new era of growth and sustainability at Momentum, with more space for our staff to call home.

Partnership

This year, Momentum saw a record number of run-out performances by our  Community Performance Troupe. These performances featured our most advanced dancers and highlighted collaborations with several of our community partners. Momentum’s run-out season began with a performance at the National Urban League Conference and continued with Mayor Ginther’s State of the City address, COSI’s Science Festival, and the National PTA Convention. 

Last, and certainly not least, Momentum Advanced Teams dancers performed alongside BalletMet Academy dancers at the Greater Columbus Arts Council’s annual Arts Partnership luncheon, with choreography by BalletMet’s Artistic Director Edwaard Liang. 

Of course, none of our programming would be possible without the support of our generous donors. Perhaps our greatest partners, our donors provided the resources necessary to bring Momentum classes to elementary schools each and every school day. They provided the resources necessary to create grand, artistically excellent productions that give our dancers a stage upon which to shine. And, our donors provided the resources necessary for every dancer to experience “Momentum magic”– to do their best, to work hard, to never give up, and to be healthy. For this, we thank you. 

Joy and Excellence

In 2019, Momentum joined Columbus’ citywide celebration of the Harlem Renaissance and staged one of its biggest and most collaborative productions yet. Set against a backdrop of jazz, rhythm & blues, and a little bit of tap dancing, our grand spring production of The Harlem Renaissance: Teach Them To Dream explored the development of arts and culture during this rich, catalytic period of American history.

Momentum dancers from across the city became a part of this lively and colorful production that brought joy and inspiration to capacity audiences at the Davidson Theatre. Through their participation in the show and the Momentum experience, these dancers developed teamwork, discipline, and self-confidence– all life skills that will impact them for years to come. 

This October, Momentum was honored to receive the Greater Columbus Arts Council’s Columbus Makes Art Award for our Harlem Renaissance production. Presented at the 2019 Arts Partnership Luncheon, this award recognized two nominees for outstanding achievements in innovation, risk, and artistic excellence. This award could not have been a more fitting cap on a truly excellent year.   

A Glimpse into 2020

As we look to the year (and decade!) ahead, we are so excited to continue to build Momentum. Our next show, Truth Be Told: An adaptation of a Chinese folktale, is a celebration of Chinese arts and culture. Children from around the city will be united through dance, music, and performance as they explore the meaning of harmony, truth, and kindness. We hope you will join us on May 13 & 15, 10:30 am & 1:00 pm, when 1,000 Momentum dancers will take the stage at the Davidson Theatre for this grand year-end production!