Carole Stines, who has 12 years' experience in jazz and tap dancing, began instructing liturgical dancing about four years ago. A longstanding member and choreographer for Woodside's St. Mary's of Winfield's drama guild, Stines was asked to teach the dance style at the church's after-school program. Although she had no experience in the style, she said she taught her own interpretation of it.After several months of teaching the dance, which she describes as a combination of interpretive and meditative, she decided to produce a short liturgical dance video - "Rejoice" - in the hopes of airing it on "The Prayer Channel," which she watches avidly."All (the channel's) programming was just religious music," she said. "Since I taught liturgical dancing, I thought I would create a program to combine the dancing with music."Stines, who is a secretary at Grover Cleveland High School in Ridgewood, has taught the classes as an after-school program at St. Mary's of Winfield Church in Woodside for the past two years. Her students then present a liturgical dance at the church's Easter Sunday mass.About 1 1/2 years ago, Stines began to put "Rejoice" together by hiring a music video director - Deborah Oster-Pannell- and an editor - Marco Antonio Olmos -gathering friends and neighbors to participate in the video, scouting Queens locations and raising funds for the 27-minute film.She said the project was a great learning experience but a costly one, although she did not want to disclose the price tag on the project. However, she said she spent all of her own money on "Rejoice.""I'm a very creative person, but I wasn't knowledgeable about the business aspect of producing - licensing fees, paying recording companies, hiring an attorney," she said. "It became very expensive, but it was really worth it. The response has been very good. My phone has not stopped ringing."Stines said she contacted The Prayer Channel, which will change from Channel 79 to Channel 97 on March 1, during the production of the video and it expressed interest. Once she finished "Rejoice," she contacted the channel again, and it agreed to show the video on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 8:30 a.m., starting Feb. 18 and lasting for about three months, she said.She said she enlisted the help of her neighbors and friends to dance in the video, including Flushing's Faith Presbyterian Church Choir, which performs hymns in Korean and English in the video; a sign language expert; the Liturgical Dancers from Rick Lionaron's "Song and Dance Studio" of Grand Avenue; and several soloist dancers. She said she spread the word about the video via e-mail.The dancers perform to music in front of St. Mary's of Winfield, St. Adalbert's Church in Elmhurst, the Historic First Presbyterian Church of Newtown and in Long Beach.Stines said the production of "Rejoice" and its extended run on The Prayer Channel has been a dream come true."It's very exciting because it took so long," she said. "To finally see your idea come to fruition, it was a wonderful experience." Reach reporter Nathan Duke by email at news@times
©2006 Community News Group
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