Aaron's Dance Resume


AARON ALPERT

Aaron@nirkoda.com, (818) 687-9717, www.nirkoda.com
5843 Cardoza Drive, Westlake Village, CA 91362


Summary

Aaron is an Israeli Folk Dance specialist who has been dancing his whole life. Since January 2007, he has taught and programmed, always bringing high energy and a joy of dancing with him.


Skills and Services Offered

Teaching Israeli dance to all levels, beginners to advanced; engaging all ages, children to seniors; programming in a harkada or camp setting; organizing Israeli dancing at simcha events, such as onegs, B’nei Mitzvot, and weddings; running of a successful, high-energy session, including administrative tasks; selection, maintenance, and set-up of equipment.


Organizer: Dance Camps, Workshops, and Weekends

Nirkoda Ba'Kerem, Camp Newman, Santa Rosa, CA, October 2017

  • A four-day, three-night event featuring guest choreographers Yaron Malichi (Israel) and Mitch Ginsburgh (Philadelphia), with programming by Shirley Smith (Los Angeles)
  • Aaron developed the concept of a joint Israeli dance camp and wine tasting event, along with the relaxed ethos of the event, reflecting the Bay Area persona
  • Researched venues, negotiated rates and services, eventually signed a contract with Camp Newman
  • Received and processed 100 registrations, accommodating dietary restrictions, medical needs, and other special requests
  • When Camp Newman was tragically destroyed by the Sonoma County fires three weeks before the event, Aaron found an alternate venue, though due to lingering concerns about the spread of the fire, the event was ultimately cancelled, and full refunds were furnished to all registrants
  • Aaron organized a special Nirkoda event with all of the guests, at which Yaron introduced two brand new dances, Al Tishali and Safart

Nirkoda Mi'Nona, Congregation Etz Chayim, Palo Alto, CA, September 2016

  • An all-day event in two workshops and a party, featuring Nona Malki, choreographer from Vancouver, Canada
  • Aaron arranged the special guest, coordinated between her and three other local teachers, bringing a total of six dances to the Bay Area
  • Developed an aggressive marketing campaign to ensure high attendance
  • DJed open dancing between teaching sets and the entire evening party

Staff: Dance Camps, Workshops, and Weekends

Camp MachoLA, Crowne Plaza, San Diego, CA, January 2017

  • Hired by Sagi Azran to join Yaron Carmel, Shlomo Maman, Ohad Atia, and Arthur Lerer on staff
  • Taught Dudu Barzilay's new hit Linshom K'tzat
  • DJed opening session, lines session, and evening programming
  • Led teaching and review for beginners

Camp Rikud, Hess Kramer, Malibu, CA, May 2016

  • Aaron's first time on staff at an Israeli Dance Camp
  • He taught three dances to approximately 100 participants
    • Rosh Ha'ayin (Bashchuna), a classic circle dance by Dani Dassa
    • Dira K'tana Be'Haifa, a new circle dance with a highly complex structure by Rafi Ziv
    • Emet Achat, an intricate new partner dance by Shlomo Maman
  • Aaron brought energy and ruach to help make dance camp enjoyable

Stockton Folk Dance Camp, Stockton, CA, July 2018

  • One of the largest and longest-running International Folk Dance camps, this was Stockton's 71st year
  • Aaron taught Israeli folk dances, led a cultural assembly on the history of Israel and its folklore, and contributed to the energy and vibrancy of the camp

Workshop at Temple B'nai Israel, Sacramento, CA, March 2018

  • Led dancing for a five-hour workshop for approximately 15 dancers, working on updating the group's core repertoire with hits of the last two years
  • Taught Normali, Arbah Onot, Et Lirkod, Sorefet Rachavot, Linshom K'tzat, and Linshom

Limmud Bay Area, Sonoma State University, CA, June 2016

  • Limmud is a conference of approximately 350 participants, mostly Jews, but from all backgrounds and walks of life, sharing knowledge and wisdom.
  • Aaron prepared and led four sessions for Limmud Bay Area:
    • Oneg Shabbat — An hour of simcha style dancing celebrating Shabbat. About 20 participants.
    • Beginners' Workshop — A 70-minute intensive introduction for those who are interested in making Israeli Folk Dancing part of their everyday lives. About 6 participants.
    • Havdallah Dancing — A short 20-minute set of dancing immediately following Havdallah services, with both familiar dances (Niggun Atik, Mayim), and a broader range of dances (Sovevuni, a modified La'ner Ve'libesamim). About 150 participants.
    • La'Machar Ve'la'Etmol — An innovative program developed by Aaron, incorporating narrative, discussion, primary sources, along with copious dancing, to examine the parallels between the history of the State of Israel and of rikudei am.

Moveable Feet, St. Bede's Episcopal Church, Menlo Park, CA, June 2015

  • Selected and taught one circle dance (Mei Nahar) and one partner dance (Perach Ba'aviv).

Sessions

Nirkoda! Saturday Israeli Folk Dance Harkada, October 2012 – present, Palo Alto, CA

  • Monthly Israeli Folk Dance party
  • Session was conceived, implemented, and is run by Aaron, and about 45 dancers attend
  • Nirkoda! features innovative programming that complements the other local weekly session with a balance of persistent favorites and seldom-played esoteric dances
  • Aaron also manages all of the back-end duties, such as reserving the facility, preparing snacks and decorations, advertising the session, and maintaining the website (www.nirkoda.com/saturday)
  • Nirkoda! has featured theme nights (60s, luau, etc.) and several guest teachers (Sagi Azran, Dale Alpert, Nona Malki, Shirley Smith, etc.)

Monday Night Weekly Harkada (Loui Tucker), July 2012 – present, Sunnyvale, CA

  • Subsitute DJ and teacher for Loui Tucker's session (about 100 attendees), about 2-3 weeks per year
  • Guest teacher, selecting and teaching new dances learned at camps

Thursday Night Weekly Harkada, 2010 – present, Palo Alto, CA

  • Subsitute DJ and teacher for large session (about 90 attendees), run by Shirley Smith until April 2011 and by Karina Niederman since.

Café Simcha Weekly Harkada, March 2011 – present, Kensington, CA (near Berkeley)

  • Small weekly session with about 30 dancers in the hills of Berkeley
  • Aaron is part of the rotation of markidim, and he will lead beginners’ dancing, teach the intermediate/advanced class, and program approximately 8 weeks each year
  • Aaron is a member of the organizing committee, collaborating with the other committee members
  • Maintains the database of dances taught, along with data and video links for each of the dances

UC Berkeley Israeli Dance DeCal, January 2007 – May 2011, Berkeley, CA

  • For 9 semesters, Aaron taught one of the two (beginners and advanced) weekly ninety minute classes offered during the fall and spring semesters, for which students earn 1 or 2 units
  • Aaron designed the curriculum for the 2-unit class, bringing in diverse English-language readings about Israeli dance and organizing school-funded field trips to local sessions
  • Aaron also performed administrative duties, such as filling out the requisite paperwork, working with the faculty sponsor, building the first website (www.israelidance.berkeley.edu)
  • Assisted with other DeCal initiatives, such as the Shabbat cooking experience and biannual marathon with guest teachers

Guest teacher and/or DJ at various sessions

  • Orly Star's Wednesday session, Los Angeles, CA, May 2017 (Hayom Haba)
  • Shirley Smith's Sunday session, Irvine, CA, October 2017 (Sorefet Rechavot), February 2018 (Achshav Ani Chozer)
  • Sagi Azran's Thursday session, Los Angeles, CA, November 2017 (Simanei Hazman), December 2018
  • San Diego Rokedet, Susan and Raphael Gottesman, San Diego, CA, April 2018
  • Donna Cole's Sunday session, Portland, OR, July 2017 (Ben Binyamin, Op)
  • Leedy Grange, Sue Wendel, Portland, OR, July 2017 (Boker, Yalla)
  • Esti Livne's Thursday session, Mercer Island, WA, July 2017 (K'shehatal Notzetz, Hayom Haba)
  • Nona Malki's Wednesday session, Vancouver, BC, July 2017 (Sorefet Rechavot)

Training and Dance Education

  • Early training with his father, Dale Alpert, a Los Angeles-based markid at Café Danssa; staff member at Camp Rikud; dance specialist at Temple Adat Elohim, Temple Akiba, Temple Ramat Zion, and Camp Hess Kramer; and simcha dance leader for over 40 years
  • Danced for 11 years at Camp Alonim, a Jewish summer camp with a focus on introducing young people to Judaism via Israeli dance; learned from David Dassa (1997-2003) and Erica Goldman (2004-2008)
  • Danced with and learned from a host of West Coast based markidim, including David Dassa, Israel Yakovee, Erica Goldman, Loui Tucker, Shirley Smith, Karina Niederman, and William Harvey
  • Self-educated on the history of Israeli Folk Dance, with discussion with many markidim, reading a plethora of English-language articles and books, and study of primary sources collected over the years

Simcha Events

  • Yom Ha'atzma'ut Party for Russian Jews in the Bay Area
  • Oneg dancing at Temple Emanu-El, San Jose, CA
  • Simchat Torah dancing at Congregation Etz Chayim, Palo Alto, CA
  • Private Sukkot party in Portola Valley, CA

Dance Camps Attended

  • Camp Rikud (Brandeis, CA, and Malibu, CA): 1988-2004, 2006-2016
  • Winter Rikud (Malibu, CA): 2007-2014
  • Kochavim (Wimberley, TX): 2008, 2009, 2015, 2016, 2018
  • G’vanim (Starlight, PA): 2012-2017
  • MachoLA (Sanger, CA; San Diego, CA): 2015-2018
  • Be'ketzev Acher (Oakbrook, IL): 2017
  • Be'lev Echad (Vancouver, BC, Canada): 2016-2018
  • Stockton Folk Dance Camp (Stockton, CA): 2017-2018
  • Seattle Rokedet (Redmond, WA): 2018
  • Laguna Folk Dance Festival (Laguna Woods, CA): 2018
  • Yoni Carr's Labor Day Mini Camp (San Diego, CA): 2017
  • Horati (Queens, NY): 2017
  • The Land (La Honda, CA): 2016
  • Heritage Festival (Redwood City, CA): 2014
  • Camp Yona (Southern California): 1988-2001
  • Camp Finjan (Malibu, CA): 1988-1999

Equipment

  • 2x Harbiner APS15 speakers, 200W, 15"
  • Alesis Multimix8 USB mixer
  • Nady UHF-4 wireless mic
  • HP Pavilion dv6 laptop
  • AMPS Pro with VMM database and playlist software
  • 2x dynamic corded mics, cables, stands