DTW Awards Residency Grants to Artists and Studios

Dance Theater Workshop has always determinedly supported contemporary dance, but this particular project is great because it supports artists and the studios that support those artists. DTW’s Creative Residency Grants are awarded to both dancers and their studios as part of the Outer/Space Program, which was established in 2000 as a response to the shortage of affordable rehearsal and performance space in Manhattan.

This year, ten artists were selected to receive grants: Daniel Charon; Elena Demyanenko; Nancy Garcia; Sam Kim; Annie Kloppenberg; Juliana F. May; Stochastic Ensemble/ Margaret Paek; Peter Scisciolo; Mary Sullivan (DTW Van Lier Fellow); and Tara Aisha Willis (DTW Van Lier Fellow). These choreographers get to take advantage of 100 hours of free rehearsal space, a six-month stipend, and professional development workshops.

Five Outer/Space Creative Residency Grants were awarded to studios in NYC’s outer boroughs: Brooklyn Arts Exchange, Cave Organization, BRAZIL, Green Space, and Topaz Arts. These studios received funding to offer 1000 hours of rehearsal space to the greater dance community for a subsidized rate of $10 per hour or less.

Congratulations to all the recipients. What an amazing opportunity!

Teacher Voices
Photo courtesy Rhee Gold Company

Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis, there has been a shift in our community that is so impressive that the impact could last long into our future. Although required school closures have hit the dance education field hard, what if, when looking back on this time, we see that it's been an incredible renaissance for dance educators, studio owners and the young dancers in our charge?

How could that be, you ask?

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Teachers Trending
Photo by Yvonne M. Portra, courtesy Faulkner

It's a Wednesday in May, and 14 Stanford University advanced modern ­dance students are logged on to Zoom, each practicing a socially distanced duet with an imaginary person. "Think about the quality of their personality and the type of duet you might have," says their instructor Katie Faulkner, "but also their surface area and how you'd relate to them in space." Amid dorm rooms, living rooms, dining rooms and backyards, the dancers make do with cramped quarters and dodge furniture as they twist, curve, stretch and intertwine with their imaginary partners.

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Getty Images

Securing the correct music licensing for your studio is an important step in creating a financially sound business. "Music licensing is something studio owners seem to either embrace or ignore completely," says Clint Salter, CEO and founder of the Dance Studio Owners Association. While it may seem like it's a situation in which it's easier to ask for forgiveness rather than permission—that is, to wait until you're approached by a music-rights organization before purchasing a license—Salter disagrees, citing Peloton, the exercise company that produces streaming at-home workouts. In February, Peloton settled a music-licensing suit with the National Music Publishers' Association out-of-court for an undisclosed amount. Originally, NMPA had sought $300 million in damages from Peloton. "It can get extremely expensive," says Salter. "It's not worth it for a studio to get caught up in that."

As you continue to explore a hybrid online/in-person version of your class schedule, it's crucial that your music licenses include coverage for livestreamed instruction—which comes with its own particular requirements. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about music licensing—in both normal times and COVID times—as well as some safe music bets that won't pose any issues.

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