Longtime international dance leaders and ethnic performers
| SANNA LONGDEN, a long time dance educator and international dance leader from Evanston, Illinois, who teaches in schools and at educator conferences locally, nationally, and internationally. Sanna's specialty is to focus on the "folk," emphasizing ethnic movement, music, styling, and cultural background. Even more, her lessons illustrate how dance and movement activities can encourage community, civility, and cooperative teamwork, as well as creativity, concentration, cultures, and curriculum connections.
A well-known clinician at American Orff-Schulwerk Organization (AOSA), American Organization of Kodaly Educators (OAKE), Music Educators National Conference(MENC), and other music organization events, Sanna teaches in world music seminars and university courses, and is a Silver Burdett/Pearson author and workshop leader (www.pearsonschool.com/music2008). She has also presented at many physical education conferences and workshops, as well as at in-service events for K-12 classroom teachers and specialists, and has spent much time in elementary schools around the U.S. as a resident artist.
In the Chicago area, Sanna teaches courses at universities, choreographs for theater and opera companies, leads family folk dance parties, and participates in integrated arts projects. In addition, she has served as an artist-in-residence through the Illinois Arts Council's Arts-in-Education program at numerous public and private schools.
A longtime international dance leaders and performers, Sanna and her husband, Mars, led a popular weekly international dance group in Evanston for close to 30 years and are still active in the group and other regional dance activities. They also teach dances of the classical music repertoire to piano teacher organizations and give private ballroom dance lessons to people planning weddings and other events.
Sanna and Mars have been members of several exhibition folk dance ensembles and performed in international festivals in Macedonia and Hungary, taught workshops in Spain and Taiwan, and led dancing on cruises up the Inside Passage of Alaska, along the rivers of Russia, and down the Danube.
Sanna is coauthor of the book, Cultures & Styling in Folk Dance, written with Phyllis S. Weikart (HighScope Press, 1998), as well as Making Music with Movement & Dance, written with Wendy Taucher (Pearson Education, 2006). She also edits and publishes articles in many folklore magazines. Her seven instructional DVDs with accompanying CDs, featuring favorite folk dances of kids and teachers, are sold worldwide through distributors and on this website. In addition, she is producer of the ancient Passover dance, "The Matzorena," with the Maxwell Street Klezmer Band, and founder of the Pourparler annual gathering of dance educators.