Shaking with Seniors is the brainchild of Fayette Coppock-Brown (Artistic Director of The X-Perience Dance Company). Brown has always been a lover of the arts. She was enrolled in dance by the age of 5 and attended William M. Meredith Elementary School for Creative and Performing Arts. It was at Meredith that her passion for all creative artforms was sparked, but she was also able to participate in an intergenerational partnership that Meredith had with a local senior center. Fayette remembers vividly playing checkers with the residents, hearing some of their stories of the Holocaust, the Civil Rights Movement, and the Bombing of Pearl Harbor. Meeting people who had lived through these historical events made a lasting impact on Fayette. It gave life to stories that she had only read about in books. She recounts it also imparting a sense of compassion and respect for those who had experienced those events. In addition to being passionate about the performing arts, Fayette has developed a drive for community outreach. Brown has consistently tried to find ways to share the experiences that she believes shaped and impacted her as a child. She believes that the arts are a unifying agent within humanity and uses it as a catalyst to push her community initiatives. 

About 3 years ago, Fayette began developing the Shaking with Seniors program. However, due to numerous Covid-related hurdles, she was unable to get the program off the ground. This year, thanks to Tawanda Hennix, who is also an employee at Brightview and a supportive dance mom, Fayette was able to connect with Joshua Mason and they were finally able to launch the program. Both Fayette and Joshua believe there’s so much to be learned from both generations. Brightview has residents who have sat with presidents and are award-winning scholars in their fields of study while on the other hand, most of the dancers are growing up with technology and endless informational resources that the seniors could have never imagined. 

Thanks again 6abc Action News for featuring our first ever Shakin with Seniors workshop yesterday! To all the volunteers, staff, parents, dancers and residents of Brightview Senior Living, we are so grateful for your willingness to honor Dr. King through this demonstration of unity.