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Dancers Rehearse for Tom Tom Festival on Downtown Mall

April 2, 2013

Organizers are getting ready for the Tom Tom Founders Festival, which runs in Charlottesville from April 11-14.

The festival brings together the Charlottesville community through music, art and dance.

Paul Beyer, the director of this festival, says this event is meant to transform the Downtown Mall.

"Tom Tom is specifically about Charlottesville as a creative hub," said Beyer. "We want to brand Charlottesville as a place where all of these creative conversations happen, where there is art, there is music, there is innovation. Where this is the place to be an artist or creator."

This year marks the first time dance will be incorporated into the festival

"This dance is very pedestrian," said choreographer Veronica Hart. "We are not wearing tights or point ballet shoes. We are not on a stage. We are in this very common space. Well, uncommon. It's beautiful. But we're trying to de-familiarize the familiar."

Tuesday on the Downtown Mall, community members got to see a preview of what next weekend has to offer

"What we saw today was a pop up preview of a dance performance that will occur April 14," said Beyer. "It's a dance score for the whole Downtown Mall. They will be going up the Mall during Tom Tom performing spontaneous pop up performances."

"We think it is really interesting. This is non-imposing to people's space and time," said Hart. "You can either choose to come and watch it or let it pass you by. Either way, it is a way to experience dance in sort of a comfortable space for all of us in Charlottesville."

The director of the event says, no matter what your passion is, this festival offers something for everyone.

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