Please Make Your Tax Deductible Contribution to the WDC

Dear Friend of Dance,

The Wisconsin Dance Council is now a registered non-profit organization through PayPal giving.  Today and tomorrow (December 30 and December 31) PayPal will donate 100% of your gift (no service fee) plus donate an additional 1% of every donation of $10.00 or more.  As always, your gift is tax deductible, as allowed by law.Please consider making a donation to the scholarship fund at the following link: You can do this by clicking on the link and typing in Wisconsin Dance Council in the upper left hand corner of the page. The Wisconsin Dance Council Scholarship fund helps support dance opportunities for students throughout Wisconsin to attend summer intensives.  Your gift, big or small, makes all the difference.

Also, if you have not renewed your membership with the Wisconsin Dance Council, please go to the following webpage and renew your membership now.

Warm wishes,
The Wisconsin Dance Council

4Pillars4Health sponsors Master Teacher

4Pillars4Health EcoSpace sponsors World Renowned Master Teacher Sifu Pragata Blaise

4Pillars4Health is an exceptionally beautiful and inspiring multi-use space in the heart of Monona, WI.  In fact, it is in the backyard of longtime WDC member and Professional Dancer/Teacher/Choreographer Dianné Jean Aldrich.

After her return to Madison from 14 years in New York City and abroad as a professional dancer, choreographer and producer, Dianné combined her love for the art of dance along with her passion for health, wellness and integrated sustainability and created 4Pillars4Health EcoSpace.  The EcoSpace itself is a spectacular cedar wood yurt with a five foot central skylight and windows in the round so as to let the natural beauty and light of the surrounding land to pour in and nurture all who are inside.  A wide range of happenings take place in the yurt, Dance Classes, Private Dance/Theater Coaching, Qi Gong, Pilates, Music Concerts, Private Bodywork sessions, MoonLodge Circles, Yoga Classes and more.  One of Dianné’s most profound offerings is the opportunity for students to meet and work with world renowned master teachers and elders.

This November, 4Pillars4Health will sponsor and host Sifu Pragata Blaise, Master Qi Gong Teacher and musician.  Dianné expresses her connection to Qi Gong in this way, “Qi Gong is a most efficient and effective form for connecting one with their life force, their energy, understood by dancers as their stage presence and electricity while dancing.  It is an absolutely incredible practice to mediate pain and injury and keep the body in optimum strength and balance.  My beloved dance teacher Luigi inspires us to ‘Dance from the Inside Out’.  Qi Gong is the technique to cultivate this ability as we become ever more intimate with our own individual life force and can consciously move that power out through our bodies and into the space around us.”

Originally from France, Sifu Pragata spent more than 20 years in India learning from the great living Indian Masters before finding his way into China where he was first introduced to Qi Gong.  He has spent the past 18 years refining and teaching his practice and with the blessing of his own Master Teacher, Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit, began to teach the highly regarded, simple yet profound Shaolin 18 Lohan Hands.  Dianné met Sifu Pragata 7 years ago and immediately there was a connection in philosophy, technique and a love for teaching.  They have been working together ever since and this year Dianné is feeling most honored and privileged to host his November workshops in Madison and Chicago.

Dianné says to the Dance Community:

I want to let you know about this absolutely incredible Master Teacher coming to Madison.  Pragata’s QiGong technique is an Art that will enhance a dancers technique, stage presence, energy levels and help to mediate injury.  Teachers will interact with their students in a highly enhanced and productive way just by experiencing Pragata’s teaching style.  A very important workshop for all TEACHERS, choreographers and dancers.  I have been personally learning from Pragata for more than 7 years and I can say, after having been the student of some of the worlds best teachers during my 14 years in NYC, meeting Pragata and working with him is a must!

Please attend and help spread the word!   Pragata will be so excited to have a host of dancers at his workshop.  I am happy to offer a discount for groups of 3 or more registering for the Introduction/Level 1 workshop on November 8th & 9th.  Please contact me for more details!  :)  Many Thanks and Much Love,  Dianné Jean Aldrich

Additional information and registration for this workshop or other offerings at 4Pillars4Health EcoSpace can be found at or by contacting:

Dianné Jean Aldrich at (608) 279-5225

Sifu Pragata’s website:


Ristow Celebrates 50 Years of Teaching


Charmaine Ristow (WDC Distinction Award 1996) celebrated fifty years of teaching with a duet choreographed by long-time dance partner Vivian Tomlinson (WDC Distinction Award 1999).  Mr. Tomlinson choreographed the piece to the song “Charmaine”, and they performed the piece at Ballet U’s annual Spring Showcase in May.


Charmaine Ristow began dancing with June-Lee Haertel in Wisconsin Rapids at age 3, assisting classes at age 10, teaching at 14 and teaching all the classes at her teacher’s studio during her senior year in high school. She then moved to Madison to earn a Special Education degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  Ms. Ristow began teaching elective ballet classes for the UW Dance Department and dancing with the Wisconsin Ballet Company under the direction of Tibor Zana (WDC Career Recognition 1996) and Bess Zana (WDC Career Recognition 2001), also teaching for their school.  After traveling worldwide professionally with the Milwaukee and Birgit Cullberg (Stockholm) ballets, Ms. Ristow choose to continue her rewarding Madison career.


Ms. Ristow opened her own studio on Monroe Street in 1976, and served various roles for the Choreographers Consortium, Wisconsin Dance Ensemble’s Madison Nutcrackers, Kanopy Dance, and MetroDance.  Ms. Ristow’s students have danced with the Pacific Northwest Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Houston Ballet, Richmond Ballet and  the American Ballet Theatre.

Ms. Ristow currently teaches at Ballet U and directs the annual Verona Youth Ballet Nutcracker, in partnership with the Kehl School of Dance.  The Nutcracker features nearly 100 dancers from 10 area studios and local professional alumni in the principal roles.

Please click here to read some of the other changes for Ms. Ristow this year:ristowclickhere

Experienced Youth Hip Hop Instructor Needed

Experienced Youth Hip Hop Instructor needed at the Virginia Davis School of Dance

Experienced youth Hip Hop instructor needed.  Experience in other dance forms (ballet, tap, jazz) helpful.  Benefits include classes and dance wear shop discount.  Friendly, family owned studio celebrating our 40th Anniversary this year.  Contract would run September through May.  Pay: $12.00-$14.00/hr.

Virginia Davis School of Dance, LLC
2037 Sherman Avenue,  Madison, WI 53704
(608) 241-4988