JMU, Sentara RMH collaborate to help stroke survivors, caregivers

Sentara_RMHJames Madison University, in collaboration with the Sentara RMH Stroke Program and Stuart Pimsler Dance and Theater, will provide a series of movement workshops to stroke survivors and their partners in early April.

To celebrate its 35th anniversary season, SPDT initiated a nationwide application process to award “one incredible community” with a weeklong residency and performance opportunity. JMU’s School of Theatre and Dance applied for and was awarded the grant.

“It is exciting to have been awarded the grant because SPDT has really pioneered the arts in health care field,” says Kate Trammell, professor of dance at JMU. “It is valuable to give our students exposure to an emerging field that could be a source of meaningful employment, and it places JMU and Sentara RMH on the cutting edge in terms of artists and health care practitioners working together.”

SPDT will present a free, two-part program, “Meaning in Movement,” at Sentara RMH on Monday, April 6, and Wednesday, April 8, from 10 a.m. to noon. Registration is required. Participants are asked to attend both sessions.

Activities assume that all movement can be considered dance and that all people can be considered dancers. Previous dance experience is not required. Participants will be invited to share their stories and experiences as stroke survivors and to translate their stories and feelings into movement to help them find expression for the complex feelings and pressures they experience as a result of stroke.

In addition to the community workshops, SPDT will conduct lectures, workshops and classes for students and faculty in JMU’s College of Health and Behavioral Studies and College of Visual and Performing Arts. The residency culminates in a performance at the Forbes Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, April 11, at 8 p.m. in the Earlynn J. Miller Dance Theatre.

Tickets for the performance are $10. Limited seating is available. For tickets, visit or call the Forbes Center Box Office at (540) 568-7000.


SPDT Full List of Residency Events

Monday, April 6
10 a.m.-noon
*“Meaning in Movement” free workshop, Sentara RMH Medical Center

1:25-2:55 p.m.
Advanced Modern master class, Forbes Center, JMU – Room 1270

Tuesday, April 7
8:30-10:30 a.m.
Dance in Community class (with student/faculty guests from Music and Human Services
program), Forbes Center, JMU – Room 1298

1-3 p.m.
“Caring for the Caregiver” workshop, Sentara RMH Medical Center

Wednesday, April 8
10 a.m.-noon
*“Meaning in Movement” free workshop, Sentara RMH Medical Center

11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
“Making Work” workshop for advanced dance composition and playwriting students,
Forbes Center, JMU – Room 1270

5-5:50 p.m.
*Intro to Arts in Healthcare (one-hour free talk) for students in arts and healthcare
majors, Anthony-Seeger Auditorium, JMU

Thursday, April 9
1-3 p.m.
“Caring for the Caregiver” workshop, Sentara RMH Medical Center

5:15-6:30 p.m.
“Mapping the Patient: An Overview of Arts and Healthcare” CHBS faculty/graduate student workshop, Festival Conference and Student Center, JMU – Conference Room 8

5-6:30 p.m.
Dance class with men’s golf team, Forbes Center, JMU – Room 1299

Friday, April 10
10:10-11:25 a.m.
Friday Free master class, Forbes Center, JMU – Room 1270

Saturday, April 11
8 p.m.
*SPDT performance, Forbes Center, JMU – Earlynn J. Miller Dance Theatre

* indicates open to the public

In collaboration with JMU College of Visual and Performing Arts, JMU College of Health and Behavioral Studies, JMU Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services, JMU School of Theatre and Dance, Sentara RMH Medical Center, Shenandoah Valley Brain Injury Support Group, Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community, Bridgewater Retirement Center, Sunnyside Retirement Center, Generations Crossing


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