Performance returns to the Moss Arts Center when local choreographer and dancer Rachel Rugh provides a series of dance demonstrations live from the center’s lobby during an online event that includes an interactive discussion with the artist.

The Moss Arts Center presents this 45-minute free Zoom session on Friday, July 10, at noon. Moderated by Ruth Waalkes, Moss Arts Center executive director and Virginia Tech’s associate provost for the arts, Rugh’s session is part of the center’s online series, “In the Moment: Artists and Their Work.”

Rugh will provide several demonstrations during the session, including an exploration of movement suitable for all ages, a performance score based on a student choreography assignment, and a collaborative piece featuring Annie Stevens, assistant professor of percussion in Virginia Tech’s School of Performing Arts. Stevens will perform remotely excerpts from a piece she recently helped commission, Marc Mellits’ marimba solo, “Zodiac.”

Rugh will also discuss the methods she has used for teaching Virginia Tech students and community members while transitioning to online instruction.

Rugh’s online talk is free, but registration is required. Find registration information on the Moss Arts Center website.

A dancer, teacher, mover, and shaker currently based in Blacksburg, Rugh is the founder and director of New River Moving Arts, a dance school and performing company that honors the unique body stories of individual dancers and strives to create low-pressure performance opportunities that allow dancers to build confidence and feel successful on their own terms.

Rugh is an adjunct faculty member at Radford University and Virginia Tech, as well as the recipient of the 2017-18 Dr. Robert L.A. Keeley Healing Arts Residency at the Carilion New River Valley Medical Center, where she provided therapeutic movement experiences for patients, staff, and visitors.



She has collaborated with the Washington, D.C.-based Dance Exchange, as well as Seattle choreographers Pat Graney, Amy O’Neil, and Jurg Koch. Her choreographic work has been featured at the Seattle International Dance Festival, Movement Research (New York City), and the Washington, D.C., Capital Fringe Festival.

“In the Moment: Artists and Their Work” provides an opportunity to meet notable creators of Southwest Virginia — from visual artists to theatre-makers to choreographers — and learn more about their creative processes in this unusual time. This series of 45-minute chats gives an exclusive look inside the homes and studios of the artists, providing a chance to experience their work, ask questions, and discuss how creative luminaries are approaching art in this moment.

The series will feature Kendall Payne and Keith McCoy from Adaire Theatre in Pulaski on Aug. 7.

More virtual experiences

The center is offering other free virtual programming opportunities, including behind-the-scenes videos and online exhibitions showcasing the creativity and innovation of Virginia Tech students and faculty members.

The Center’s Student Arts Spotlight celebrates budding creativity in the time of social distancing. This dedicated online space features the work of Virginia Tech undergraduate and graduate students. From collages, sketches, and paintings to music performances, digital works, and sculpture, a range of work created by students from various disciplines passionately expresses their current experiences.

Experience the research and innovation happening within the Institute for Creativity, Arts, and Technology (ICAT) with “ICAT: Open (at the) Source,” an online world filled with innovative ICAT projects. Navigate the virtual gallery and interact with other users in an environment created using Mozilla Hubs, an open source resource that can be accessed by a web browser.

Take a deeper dive into some of the work featured in the Moss Arts Center’s spring 2020 exhibition “Fierce Women” with the center’s new behind-the-scenes video series, “Moss All Access.” Join Moss Arts Center Exhibitions Program Manager Meggin Hicklin for a virtual exploration of the work of Chakaia Booker and Rozeal.