New York Public Television Shares Archival Dance Footage in “Pioneers”

New York TV audiences can catch the second installment of the four-part series Pioneers of Thirteen, celebrating the 50th anniversary of PBS station Thirteen, this Thursday night.

The episode, “The 70s–Bold and Fearless” features Thirteen’s original footage of notable interviews, performances and events of the era. Along with the music of Stevie Wonder, previously unreleased footage of The Allman Brothers, skits by comedians Chevy Chase and John Cleese and coverage of the Watergate hearings, viewers will be treated to dance performances by Judith Jamison, Twyla Tharp and Mikhail Baryshnikov.

The 60s–Experimental Days,” aired in September and is now available to watch online, with appearances by Merce Cunningham and George Balanchine in addition to Muhammad Ali, John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Vince Guaraldi and Allen Ginsberg.

Up next are “The 80s–Trusted Voice” and “The 90s and Beyond–Changing Landscape” to be broadcast later this year.

Teacher Voices

There were plenty of reasons why we were happy to bid 2020 a not-so-fond farewell, but for tap dancers, the end of such a difficult year was the final curtain on a decade in which the art form experienced remarkable growth.

Over the past 10 years, The School at Jacob's Pillow launched its first-ever tap programs; companies such as Dorrance Dance and Caleb Teicher & Company emerged and produced award-winning work; Operation Tap became an important voice in online tap education; the American Tap Dance Foundation established its new home in Greenwich Village; The Kennedy Center presented its first full-length tap concert; and so much more.

As the new year sees tap dance trying to maintain this positive momentum despite the ongoing restrictions of the pandemic, we invited several of the field's living legends to meet on Zoom and discuss how they perceive the current state of tap dance and tap education.

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Teacher Voices
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In 2001, young Chanel, a determined, ambitious, fiery, headstrong teenager, was about to begin her sophomore year at LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts, also known as the highly acclaimed "Fame" school. I was a great student, a promising young dancer and well-liked by my teachers and my peers. On paper, everything seemed in order. In reality, this picture-perfect image was fractured. There was a crack that I've attempted to hide, cover up and bury for nearly 20 years.

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Health & Body
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Though the #MeToo movement has spurred many dancers to come forward with their stories of sexual harassment and abuse, the dance world has yet to have a full reckoning on the subject. Few institutions have made true cultural changes, and many alleged predators continue to work in the industry.

As Chanel DaSilva's story shows, young dancers are particularly vulnerable to abuse because of the power differential between teacher and student. We spoke with eight experts in dance, education and psychology about steps that dance schools could take to protect their students from sexual abuse.

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