St. Luke's UMC host second annual 'Take pART' festival

St. Luke’s United Methodist Church’s ‘Take pART 2019, A Festival of the Arts’ event will feature a wide array of free creative workshops.

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  • | 4:23 p.m. June 19, 2019
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St. Luke’s United Methodist Church will be dedicating an evening to the arts for those looking to build on their creativity, or explore new ways to express themselves.

The church will host its “Take pART 2019, A Festival of the Arts” event from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 29. The second annual event is free and open to anyone wanting to attend. Additionally, the indoor event offers reprieve from the hot, summer sun, said Elizabeth Vasquez, St. Luke’s director of connection ministries.

“Music talent is huge around here,” Vasquez said. “We have a lot of performance art, but we also wanted to focus on more visual arts and some different elements that, maybe, don’t get as highlighted, so we came up with Take pART as a way to kind of celebrate all forms of art.”

Industry professionals will be leading free creative workshops throughout the evening. Adults can experience workshops in dancing, paper crafting, theater set building and even painting with spices, among other workshops. Children can enjoy workshops in drawing, creative movement, video and media, and more. Attendees of all ages can enjoy hands-on, make-and-take art stations or take a stroll through a gallery of artwork from local artists.

“We’ll have dance workshops where you can learn (how) to salsa, or learn to do some contemporary dance,” Vasquez said.  “We also have a lot of workshops this year that are theater-related. There are some that are focused on video, lighting and … the making of a show.”

Crystal Edwards, a professional dancer, choreographer and dance teacher, works for the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. She will be teaching the dance workshops at Take pART and also is the managing director of Minneapolis-based Black Label Movement. She holds a bachelor’s degree in dance from the University of Florida and has been dancing for more of her life.

“I have been dancing forever — since I was 3 years old,” Edwards said. “I started at a local studio in Satellite Beach — where I grew up — and was lucky enough to have incredible teachers (who) trained me in every type of dance, along with tap, acrobatics and musical theater. I had a pretty broad range.”

Edwards’ dance career took her to many different places in the country — and even a few places around the world — before she moved in 2012 to the Orlando area. She will be bringing those experiences to the dance workshops at Take pART. 

“I am teaching three classes for all different ages,” Edwards said. “I’m doing a creative movement class for 2- to 5-year-olds. … (That class) is all about trying to get the kids to use their imagination and really just move with purpose and start to find some rhythm, coordination and balance.

“The next class … is for 6- to 10-year-olds, and it’s a hip-hop class,” Edwards said. “The last class is for 12 years old and up (and is) for someone who is already experienced in dance, and it is a contemporary (dance) class.”

Edwards added the creative movement and hip-hop classes each will last a half-hour, and the contemporary dance class will be a full hour. She also said although the contemporary class is recommended for those with prior experience, everyone is welcome.

The Take pART festival is just one of the ways St. Luke’s demonstrates its core values to the community, Vasquez said.

“We believe that everybody is gifted and talented by God,” Vasquez said. “These gifts and abilities are things you can use to transform the community, so we want people to come in and find a place where they can feel free to express themselves artistically.” … By coming in and, hopefully, experiencing our core values of acceptance and hospitality and community, we hope that people will feel safe so that (when) they come here, they’ll be able to express themselves.”


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