Last fall, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago's new teen program, the Dance Lab Choreographic Fellowship, launched with 22 students accepted for its inaugural year. Even as the company and school have temporarily closed their doors this spring, Hubbard Street company member and choreographer Rena Butler continues to direct this exciting choreographic-study project for students in 10th–12th grades.
This week Anouk van Dijk, creator of Countertechnique, has launched an online platform for dancers everywhere to experience her movement system while the world shelters in place. This is an unprecedented opportunity—there are only 32 certified Countertechnique teachers around the world with official approval to teach the work. Now is your chance to give Countertechnique a try from your own home.
Love electronic music? Calming notes of a piano? Smooth, rich trumpet? Want music in clear meters of 3, or in 7? This week is the ideal time to check out musician Michael Wall's abundant website soundformovement.com. I myself have enjoyed getting to experience his music over the past five years—whether to use in a teen class, older-movers class or for my own MFA thesis choreography.
With studio closures and shelter-in-place restrictions throughout the country this week due to COVID-19 concerns, dancers are putting creative skills to use in a myriad of new ways with each given day and new scenario. If you are stuck at home, consider a few of these projects that frequently get pushed down our long "to do" lists.
Kristin Damrow is a beloved teaching artist in the San Francisco Bay Area. On average, she teaches 15 hours a week with adults and teens of different levels, plus directs her company Kristin Damrow & Company. She is also a tech-savvy artist who makes vlogs and maximizes social-media posts through Facebook and Instagram to support her teaching and choreographic work. Her dance work is already well-connected via technology.
This week we asked Kristin a few questions as she posted her first online teaching video, in light of the COVID-19 outbreak and the closing of all institutions in which she teaches.
This summer, as for the past 42 years, students will flock to Colorado to immerse themselves in jazz dance training and performance. High school and college students, professional artists and teaching artists alike will find opportunities for growth and connection.
The Boulder Jazz Dance Workshop honors tradition while also embracing innovation and change within the jazz dance genre and dance field in general. Before executive/artistic director Lara Branen began the Workshop, she and her co-founder Michael Geiger had studied at separate times with San Francisco jazz teachers Ann Garvin, Linda Heine and Ed Mock. Later Lynn Simonson became their primary inspiration. Each year Branen invites new guest artists to join long-term faculty who devotedly return year after year, including: Wade Madsen (modern dance), Nancy Cranbourne (jazz), Christy McNeil Chand (jazz) and Meghan Lawitz (contemporary). This summer will include lyrical, musical theater rep and a heels class, in addition to the program's regular offerings.
It's a common scenario in dance. You currently have three part-time teaching gigs around town, plus rehearse a few days a week. You might even nanny, house sit and dog-walk here and there to bring in a little more income.
Another teaching opportunity just came your way this week—a pre-ballet class just added at the local studio or the college in town needs an intermediate modern teacher while the professor is on sabbatical. If you can resist saying an immediate "Yes!"—take 24 to 48 hours to weigh the pros and cons before committing to yet another thing right now. It truly is about time vs. money.
Each anniversary celebration of a dance company might also be considered a lesson in dance history and a study of endurance and perseverance. Thus the 50th anniversary of PHILADANCO is an opportunity to celebrate the remarkable legacy of founder and artistic director Joan Myers Brown as a source of inspiration for students, dancers and colleagues nationwide.
PHILADANCO is a resident company at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and kicked off its 50th season on October 5. Brown and the company will participate in the International Association of Blacks in Dance's 32nd annual conference, January 14–19, in Philadelphia. And you can catch the company throughout the U.S. in 2020, including February performances in Massachusetts and New Jersey.