Though former Mark Morris Dance Group member John Heginbotham premiered his own company, Dance Heginbotham, in 2011, he's been a choreographer for much longer. As a teenager, he attended Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival and enrolled in choreography guru Bessie Schönberg's three-week dance composition intensive. Heginbotham credits Schönberg for caring about her students as dancers and humans.
"She was interested not only in teaching us how to make up a dance but also how to live our best lives. Bessie would let us come into her class and vent our frustrations about life--I was 19 years old--and then she would tell us: 'Now you just have to leave it all in the grass.' She meant, of course, the grass at Jacob's Pillow. It's a life lesson, but it also applies to choreography. Sometimes you hit a wall or get frustrated, but you have to do all that you can and then learn to let it go."
Dance Heginbotham premieres Dark Theater at Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York, October 29-November 2. www.bam.org
Photos by Amber Star Merkens
Marketing is a vital part of operating and sustaining your business, but figuring out what works best for your studio requires creativity and trial and error. The good news is that today—thanks to technology—it's easier than ever to use DIY marketing. Below, learn from the experiences of four studio owners: how they tackled different marketing strategies and what did (and didn't) translate into paying customers—plus, advice from an expert on how to up your game.
You know how some people lust over the interiors of beautiful homes? Scandinavian aesthetics, marble countertops, chrome appliances? That's how I feel when I look at images of gorgeous dance studios. And I'm willing to bet you feel the same—which is why I've been drooling over photos of the University of Southern California's Glorya Kaufman International Dance Center.
I recently watched your YouTube video on exercises for the intrinsic muscles of the feet. I have a question about the doming exercise. When doing the movement, I find it impossible to keep my toes long. The same is true for when I point my feet. I have a hard time lengthening my toes, and I feel a limited range of motion in the front of my ankle. Is there anything I can do to fix this?
Starting this Saturday, the Children's Museum of Manhattan on the Upper West Side will have an interactive dance exhibit called "Let's Dance!" Basically every facet of dance is featured in the exhibit: kids can explore lighting design with a special child-friendly lighting box; choreograph with the use of props, signs and costumes; create accompaniment with percussion instruments; manipulate posable figures; see incredible dance photography and video; and, best of all, interact with the dance portal, where they can watch, learn and interact with professional and student dance companies like Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Dancing Classrooms, Mark Morris Dance Group and Martha Graham Dance Company. Whew. That's a LOT of great stuff.