Orthodox Jewish Dancers Still Face Challenges As The Dance World Aims for More Inclusion

Modern Orthodox Jew Dena Abergel has struggled with balancing dance with her observance from the time she was a student at the School of American Ballet. From staying with a family in Manhattan over the weekends instead of her home in New Jersey, to timidly requesting three days off for the first days of Passover, she tiptoed around the difficult challenge of asking for allowances for her observance. Now 48 and a faculty member at the school and as the company’s children’s-repertory director, she makes a space for others that is welcoming of all religious traditions. She says, “If we are going to talk about diversity, equity and inclusion in dance, then we have to talk about including people of different faith backgrounds.” Read more here.


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