Some say dance is a universal language that can communicate nuanced thoughts, ideas, and identities. For Beijing native Bing Sun, dance has also been a way to get acquainted with American culture during her first few months in the United States.
Sun arrived in the U.S. in early September, eager to start her work as a visiting scholar at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Though she’s here to study early childhood education in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, she has learned many valuable lessons in Broadway Jazz Dance Fundamentals, a class offered by Continuing Studies.
In addition to learning about a uniquely American form of expression, Sun has come to appreciate the freedom that jazz dance provides.
“In jazz class, there isn’t a correct or wrong way to dance. We don’t need to dance exactly the same as the teacher does,” she explains. “I feel free to express my own feelings. And I always feel cheerful when dancing to lively music, which can make people forget about the unhappy things in life for a little while. This kind of experience seems to be part of American culture.”