capturing potential through the arts
During the past twenty years, Mr. C. Michael Tidwell and Tidwell Project has devoted much time and dedicated service efforts of dance organizations in their endeavors to develop and promote artistic excellence in this great state. Under the direction of many directors, choreographers, and teachers, he experienced growth on both a personal and professional level. Mr. Tidwell feels that he is a viable talent and, therefore feels much pride in being a dance product of this state.
While teaching in his profession, Mr. Tidwell became aware of the fact that there was a large segment of our community that did not benefit from the performing arts in any form. He felt that this was due to the lack of: exposure, recruitment in the economically disadvantaged community, a more exclusive dance curriculum, and for some, the lack of cross-cultural experiences. Due to this void and his concerns for the community, Mr. Tidwell founded The Centre for the DansArts, Inc. and The Tidwell Project, Inc., (The Tidwell Project, Inc., is the only multi-ethnic dance ensemble in the state.)
It is Mr. Tidwell’s desire not only to teach a child to dance, but to appreciate dance as a serious art form. He instills in each of his students that dance requires a discipline both of mind and body, which in turn encourages a true feeling of self-assurance and self-esteem. Equipped with these attributes, Mr. Tidwell believes that a child is better prepared for the future.
Mr. Tidwell presently teaches at Parkview Arts/ Science Magnet High School and has implemented the dance curriculum Horace Mann Magnet Junior High School. He is the director of both The Centre for the DansArts, Inc., and The Tidwell Project, Inc. He has taught at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and Philander Smith College.
Mr. Tidwell was a principal dancer for Ballet Arkansas for ten years. He has studied with many dance masters including Manolo Agullo of Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, Lorraine Cranford, founding director of Ballet Arkansas, Maureen Migden of The Royal Ballet Academy, Peter Fairweather of The Royal Ballet, Luigi at the Luigi Dance Centre in New York, Gus Giordano of Chicago, and Alvin Ailey of New York. Mr. Tidwell toured the far east with the Buddy Simpson Dancers and was a recipient of the Arkansas choreographers Fellowship sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Arkansas Arts Council.
Mr. Tidwell has also been honored with the Arkansas Martin Luther King Jr., Commission “Salute To Greatness” Award, the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame Founder’s Award and the Governor’s Individual Artist Award. He was also appointed to the Arkansas Arts Council Advisory Board by Governor Mike Beebe.
Most recently, Mr. Tidwell was inducted into the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame.