Dancing off to Wisconsin

Amy Querin, founder of NOCO and a stalwart of the local cultural scene, will soon be saying farewell to Fresno

Every once in a while someone bursts onto a city’s cultural arts scene with so much talent and enthusiasm that you just know she’s going to make a difference. Call it energy, sass, gravitas, charisma — it’s not necessarily something you can put into words. How about force of nature?

That’s how I feel about Amy Querin, founder of the Fresno Dance Collective (NOCO).

Feeling sentimental: As Amy Querin packs up her house, she surrounds herself with NOCO costumes from the signature works she created in Fresno. Photo / James Ramirez

In a relatively short amount of time in the Fresno area, she not only supercharged the local dance scene but made an impact on the larger cultural community as well. I constantly bump into Amy at local arts events, and not just her own. She is at heart a collaborator, someone constantly seeking out connections between other people and arts organizations. She can move from high culture to not so high — from the Fresno Philharmonic to the Rogue Festival — in a graceful flash.

So. Amy has something to share. This might be the worst kept secret in town, but she didn’t want to make it official until she’d personally told people who’d be directly affected. I offer her this forum.

Q: Let’s not bury the news. Is it true you’re going to be moving out of Fresno?

A: YES! The time has come. I’m planning to leave Fresno mid-December as soon as my finals are done with State Center Community College District.

Q: Why?

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Donald’s notes: Summer Arts, Week 1

Saturday update on the CSU Summer Arts program at Fresno State: tonight’s event is an evening with Vicki Lewis

This is a roundup of news, reviews and notes from the opening week of the CSU Summer Arts program, which is back at Fresno State after a five-year absence. I’ll be updating this post as the week progresses. If you have Summer Arts tidbits or thoughts on a performance you’d like to share, email me at donaldfresnoarts@gmail.com. For the public calendar of events, click here.

An evening with Vicki Lewis

vickilewissummerartsSaturday’s public event (7 p.m., John Wright Theatre) features actress Vicki Lewis, who is teaching in “The Voice Actor’s Ultimate Toolkit” Summer Arts class. Known for her roles on the TV series “NewsRadio,” “Seinfeld,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” Lewis is also an accomplished Broadway veteran and voice actor.

At Saturday’s event, Lewis will be doing something similar to an “Inside the Actor’s Studio” format with a discussion of her career, video clips and an opportunity for questions.

(Updated 1 p.m. Saturday, July 1)

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