SARATOGA SPRINGS – Madeleine Bokan grew up dancing at Saratoga City Ballet. Her college studies at Fordham University took her to New York City, and subsequently on to her current position as a sales manager for a start-up publisher. Her love of dancing remained strong. She searched for an outlet.
“You’ve had this really important thing, but if you’re not doing it professionally, it’s suddenly gone,” says Bokan, who began attending workshops for ex-dancers who still love to dance. “I was paired up with another member of the program who I quickly learned also had a full-time career outside of the dance world. She was there, like me, to fill that void for movement that all dancers-at-heart hold. Immediately I felt comfortable with these people… a creative space where I fit again.”
Inspired, Bokan re-connected with fellow Saratoga City Ballet dancing alum Erin Dooley who has continues her pursuit of a dancing career, dancing at Joffrey Ballet School and Alvin Ailey School. The duo co-founded Getaway Dance Collective and this month will launch their first retreat in their native Saratoga Springs.
It’s a way of expressing yourself and rehabilitating your body, Bokan explains, for dancers to see themselves as dancers again, by stepping out of their reality and rejuvenating with movement and choreography. “For me, it’s restorative.”
The Getaway Dance Retreat will feature dance classes and workshops at the National Museum of Dance studios and include yoga, Pilates, a guided trail walk on the Avenue of Pines, and a group dinner in Downtown Saratoga Springs. Attendees will be housed for a two-night stay at Anne's Washington Inn - which has been in Bokan’s family for three generations - and takes place Jan. 19-21. Registration is $175, which also includes a Friday welcome happy hour and dinner; Saturday breakfast, lunch, dinner, and Sunday brunch.
It’s about showing how movement can rehab the body and the mind in countless ways, Bokan says. “A weekend of wellness, of immersing everyone in movement.”
Registrations will be accepted through Sunday, Jan. 7, and be may be made at: https://getaway-dance.squarespace.com/retreat/.