Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Oh boy, the weight issue

So I'm guessing you've probably already seen or heard about the whole "too many sugar plums" controversy? Alastair Macaulay has managed to bring up weight in ballet again (as if most of the ballet dancers in the studio don't confront that every day). Jennifer Ringer, the Sugar Plum in question, was interviewed on Today Show (most interesting how she says NYCB has a variety of body types...). And Mr. Macaulay's response in print was basically that he didn't make the ridiculous body image standards of the ballet world, he just enforces them.

In addition to the body image issue that touches off women's personal reactions, the fact that the Black Swan ballet movie has just come out means it's even more appealing to mainstream media. No one is interviewing "downtown dancers" in the wake of another of Mr. Macaulay's online "controversies"--the fact that as the NY Times dance critic, he really only has an interest in classical forms, and a handful of the more musical of contemporary choreographers. I guess that story doesn't have as wide an appeal of course, it's pretty much only offends the downtown NY dancers (and their audiences) that he doesn't pay them any attention.

But back to the weight issue, who hasn't had body issues of one kind or another (if you're somehow lucky enough not to have weight as one of those) that come up as a dancer? As everyone points out, your body is your tool for making the art and so there you are. And in ballet especially, the "facility" required for professional dance is really freakishly rare. I've wondered sometimes what's worse, the old school communist style recruiting where kids were chosen specifically for their "facility" and made to dance whether they wanted to or not, or the democratic every girl in a pink tutu version, where they let you dance your heart out as a kid only to have it crushed by the realities of your genetics as you grow up.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Hinterland etc.

I hope everyone had an amazingly Happy Thanksgiving!
I wasn't in town this past weekend, so I didn't catch the show, but here's Cynthia Perry's review in ArtsCriticATL.com of Luminocity's presentation of Hinterland. And here's a photo slideshow of the same in Creative Loafing by Tara-Lynne Pixley.
Otherwise, how are the Nutcracker's going around town? Other holiday shows out there? Having fun?

Monday, November 22, 2010

About last weekend

So to update from over the weekend, here are some (p)reviews of things that happened around town (that I mentioned in my last post).
  • A preview of the Emory Dance Company show by Collin Kelly on Atlanta INtown online.
  • A review of the Kennesaw State University dance program's show by Andrew Alexander on Creative Loafing online.
  • A review of CORE Performance Company in Corazón Abriendo (Heart Opening) also by Andrew Alexander.
  • Another review of Corazón Abriendo by Cynthia Perry on ArtsCriticATL.com.
If I missed any other articles, please let me know. And of course, always interested in what you guys saw this weekend, or performed in, and how it went!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Dance this weekend

So not surprisingly for it's being the last weekend before Thanksgiving, several of the college departments are doing their fall shows (Kennesaw, Emory and Spelman), and CORE Performance Company's performing Corazón Abriendo (Heart Opening) at the Balzer. About upcoming shows:
Preview of Corazon Abriendo (Heart Opening) from Creative Loafing's Andrew Alexander
A piece on Kennesaw State University's dance program director Ivan Pulinkala in the Sunday Paper
And about recent shows:
Review of Blackbird by Brooks & Company dance from ArtsCriticATL.com Cynthia Perry
Preview and review of the same by Creative Loafing's Andrew Alexander

Friday, November 12, 2010

"Dance Buddies"

In case you didn't read down to the very end of the most recent DanceATL email, a recent thought spurred by conversations with a couple of other art-interested folks who said "I would love to come, but I have a hard time finding someone to go with me" is to make a DanceATL program called something like "dance buddies" (suggestions for the name?) Folks who're flying solo to a show can meet up at the dance table in the lobby of the performance before the show, during intermission and even afterward. Nothing formal, just a way to go alone without being alone. I know I've had friends with whom I regularly go see shows (pre-baby!), but there are always times when you can't find anybody or end up going too last minute etc.
Should we have a meet up ahead of time? Or after? Should we wear buttons that let each other know who we are? Eventually try to get tickets together? (much more complicated, that.) There's potential for a whole group of dance enthusiasts to form that gets together for shows all around town. But no expectations of that at this point. Right now, we'll just if anybody likes the idea? The concept is still in formation and we'd be happy to hear your thoughts on making it work!

Of course, we'd love it if the reality were that people who have a problem finding folks to come with them manage to strong-arm their significant other or friends into going and then the friends find that they actually kinda like that dance stuff and turn into huge fans as a result. But, in the absence of that happening (I certainly seem to have the luck that the things I take my husband to are guaranteed to be, um, challenging? in a variety of ways) this is a way to at least let the people who ARE interested be able to make it.
And by the way, if you're not on the DanceATL elist but you'd like to be, please contact me to be added at info@danceatl.org. And please send submissions for the enews to the same address. I can't promise exactly when the next one will go out, unfortunately, but maybe in mid-December? The next meeting will be December 5 in the afternoon. I'll do another post soon with details!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Catching up

So it's been a while, I apologize. There's been a lot going on! And personally I've been busy partly because I've been dancing more, so I can't complain.
Here we go with a bunch of links here to try to catch up on the last couple of weeks.
The 1st ever "we didn't have time to make it pretty" DanceATL enews went out and here's a link so you can read it if you aren't on the mailing list. And if you're not on the list but you'd like to be, please email info@coredance.org and we'll get you added!
And on the (p)review front for this week:
  • Dance Canvas preview and review from Creative Loafing's Andrew Alexander

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Atlanta Ballet's Moulin Rouge (R)

Here are a few articles about Atlanta Ballet's season opener, Moulin Rouge® that continues its run at the Cobb Energy Centre this weekend: two by Cynthia Bond Perry on ArtsCriticATL.com (a preview and review), Pierre Ruhe wrote a review for AJC, and there's another review from Creative Loafing by Andrew Alexander. Those are from the more "established" voices on dance in town--the critics if you will. It's interesting in light of our ongoing arts criticism discussion (see my earlier posts starting with March on the Emory Arts Criticism Symposium) that the Atlanta Ballet apparently sees all online coverage as the same. Their show-specific blog lists write-ups from Fashionado, and Atlanta Events under the heading "Critics Loved Moulin Rouge®". From what I can tell from how the bloggers mention dress rehearsal viewing and backstage access, and are posting the official promo shots on their blogs, the PR guys targeted bloggers right along with critics. And why not? Obviously they want as much coverage as they can get. But it's interesting that they're not at all separating the "critics" from the self-admitted neophytes. And a happy side-effect of the bloggers not being critics per se--they don't criticize! At least these two pretty much stick to gushing about how amazing everything was. Which is great, I'm totally stoked that folks who might not always be into it are going to see dance and loving it. No reason the world at large can't find out how much these folks appreciated the performance...but it's not really the same as a critical review. I personally get a much better idea of what the performance would be like to go see from the more critical reviews. So anything scholarly or "important" aside, what would I rather read? That makes the case for criticism for me.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

MAD Festival timing question from Douglas

The 2011 Modern Atlanta Dance Festival is scheduled for April 16 & 17.  These dates were chosen based on the theatre availability at the Marcus Jewish Community Center Atlanta.  The Arts and Entertainment Department at the MJCCA are longtime collaborators in the presentation of the festival.  However, April 17 is Palm Sunday. I'm interested in getting feedback from the Atlanta dance community. Would it be better if the MAD Festival is held for one night only -- Saturday, April 16? 
Please let me hear from you: fullradiusdance@aol.com or 404-724-9663.
Douglas Scott
Full Radius Dance

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Review of "Just", and venues

Review by Andrew Alexander for Creative Loafing of the past weekend's performance, "Just," presented by Wormhole and Zoetic. I have been curious about the space over at Fabrefaction, but haven't made it over there to check it out myself yet. Sounds like Mr. Alexander was impressed! Glad to have another venue available to dance in (especially if it's a good one!) And speaking of venues, I had a quick conversation with someone from Eyedrum today--the good news is that in looking for a new space they are thinking about having a performance space in the mix, including with an eye toward dance productions. The current gallery has been a great place for folks to present over the years (mostly because of the supportive folks there, and their ability to make the space not prohibitively expensive, which is great for independent artists especially.) As much as the gallery space gives an edgy, out-of-the-proscenium-box feel to a show, I think having an actual dance-friendly stage would be a welcome addition.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Atlanta Fringe Festival

Atlanta will have a Fringe Festival all its own! So for those of you making dances that need a place to perform them, check it out. Here's an article about it from Cathy Fox of ArtCriticATL.com, and the site itself is appropriately atlantafringe.com.They say the submission forms will go live on Nov. 1 and the festival itself is in August 2011. A good time to have it, in what seems to be practically "dead month", at least in the dance scene last season.

News about upcoming gloATL performance

From Cynthia Perry at ArtsCriticATL.com, news about Lauri Stallings' upcoming project (that held auditions back in late summer.)

Dance Informa sweepstakes

Deborah from Dance Informa sent me this info about their sweepstakes. They have their newest edition online too at www.danceinforma.com. 
Leading Australian Dance Magazine Gives Cash to US Dancers

Dance Informa, Australia’s leading Dance Magazine has entered the USA market with a huge incentive for new subscribers. All dancers who sign up to the bi-monthly online publication receive free entry into a cash draw of $4000 and a new Apple iPad.

“Dance Informa is not only informative, but fun. Every edition features ticket giveaways and prizes such as free dance classes, iPods and dance fashion items. Dance Informa also includes audio visual content and interactive features, with every article open to comment by readers, creating a great platform for discussion about dance”, says Managing Director Deborah Searle. “Dance Informa celebrates all things dance!”

Past editions of Dance Informa have featured interviews with such stars as JaQuel Knight (Beyoncé’s acclaimed choreographer), Emmy winning choreographers Mia Michaels, Tyce Diorio and Wade Robson, contemporary ballet legend Desmond Richardson, and a line-up of Broadway, Ballet and Commercial dance leaders and creators.

Dance Informa has wide appeal across the dance industry given its diverse range of information for dancers of all ages and styles. With a new team of dance journalists across the States, Dance Informa will report on the latest dance news and provide US dancers with the information they need to succeed in the industry, in a free and easily accessible format.

“Dancers need to be informed to make it in this industry”, says Searle. “We provide dancers with a tool to keep on top of their game, plus a few bonuses along the way - like our huge $4000 and iPad giveaway!”

So why not enter?
Entry is free and Dance Informa’s sweepstake is open to all US residents 13 years and older.
Enter today at
For official sweepstake rules visit http://www.danceinforma.com/win_$4000.htm

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

This Sunday: Fundraising for Dance in Atlanta

CORE Performance Company, Photo by Lori Teague

Zoetic Dance Ensemble, Photo by Leah Roth
DanceATL's Bi-Monthly Meeting
Sunday, October 3
7-9 p.m.
Atlanta Ballet Michael C. Carlos Dance Centre
$5 at the door, free with membership to DanceATL
Discussion Topic: "Fundraising for Dance in Atlanta"
A conversation with fundraising professionals Lisa Cremin, Director of the Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund, Lucie Andre, Past Development Officer with Paul Taylor and American Ballet Theatre, Melanie Lynch-Blanchard, Artistic Director, Zoetic Dance Ensemble. And a discussion of how DanceATL can help dance grow in metro Atlanta.
For more: info@danceatl.org
Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Here's a review from Cynthia Perry of ArtsCriticATL.com of George Staib's/Staibdance's most recent show (they just closed the last one I would think here on Sat. nite.)
And another from Andrew Alexander who recently started reviewing dance for Creative Loafing. (Or recently returned seems more apt--a quick search in the CL archives shows some articles from 2000, then the jump ten years to the Gardenhouse review from last week. Welcome back, Mr. Alexander!)
Two reviews for one show, wow, my mind is a little blown right now. And the great thing is that since I unfortunately had to miss out on this one, I get an idea anyway, from reading about it. (Well, that and hearing about it from people who went, also reviews just the informal word-of-mouth kind.) Congrats, George!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

American Muscle and more

Review of Blake Beckham's performance "American Muscle" at Eyedrum on 9/11 by Cynthia Perry with ArtsCriticATL.com.
Here's another article from Ms. Perry from back in August that I didn't post earlier about the new Atlanta Ballet space. I've just finally made it out there myself and I can say it's stunning. If you haven't made it out to drool over the huge studios and all the included amenities, you should join us for the next DanceATL meeting on Oct. 3 that'll be held in this space. Also great performers and speakers, but I'll post more about that shortly!
And congrats to ArtsCriticATL.com, Burnaway.org and Jerry Cullum for receiving Possible Futures grants. Though I have to say it's unfortunate that art writing is now also in the position to need grants. (Though with the state of print journalism at this point, I guess it's almost writing at ALL!) Teaching art and making art are already often considered "not really careers". Everyone needs to be a software engineer and apparently the world will be a better place (just a little bitter to hear about the one place there's still high demand for employment--nothing against software engineers personally ;)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Some articles

Creative Loafing's Curt Holman in an interview with George Staib about his upcoming performances next weekend, and a review of Twist that mentions the choreography in the last paragraph and a brief mention of the dance Rose and Helen did on the Convergent Frequencies shipping containers tonight in this preview of the event by Wyatt Williams.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Tap dance

A preview by Cynthia Perry on ArtsCriticATL.com of Alliance Theater's Twist focusing on tap dancer Jared Grimes.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

White House dance and more on criticism

So many things I've seen circulating online that I've been meaning to post lately! (And these aren't Atlanta-related so much as general dance topics.) 

A post from The Ballet Bag on dance criticism meets web 2.0 brings up many of the same discussions of how dance criticism meets the online world, as print journalism struggles to answer this question across the board. This post has interesting suggestions on how writers can and have been using links in their reviews to add more information for the reader about specific dance concepts or even videos of steps. So online, the educational component of the review becomes broader and the vocabulary a writer can use expands along with the word count.

Other links from this post that I want to highlight: a (rather in depth) interview from Ballet.co with NY Times dance critic Alastair Macaulay (who is apparently the last of the *paid* dance critic breed, according to an aside in this post by Tonya Plank.) Tendu TV's Marc Kirschner apparently suggested at the spring panel on dance criticism Ms. Plank took part in, a system for paying dance writers through a per ticket fee to audience members. That's one we didn't come up with at the Emory symposium! She says the panel discussed how that (and other things required by some of the changes in the definition of critic) would certainly blur the line for the critic's objectivity.

And speaking of Alastair Macaulay above, here's his NY Times article about the recent dance event at the White House. Everyone's excited that Michelle Obama organized a dance event along with the many other arts events, usually music and literature it seems, held at the White House on a pretty regular basis. Though it's by no means the first time dance has been hosted at the presidential residence, it's the first time in a LONG time, so that's great news for dance awareness generally. Here's an article from Dance/USA about the event as well. 

For more about the state of dance in general, here's an interesting piece also from the NY Times (but Gia Kourlas this time) on trends in contemporary choreography.   

I also wanted to point out that after finding Mr. Macaulay's interview I found that the Ballet.co site has a list of links to reviews and interviews of all sorts of dance from all over--almost a clipping service online for dance. Very useful/interesting!

Monday, August 30, 2010

September--ah, here's the "season"!

So August was a big dry spell for dance performance in Atlanta. But everyone kicks off their seasons soon and things get going pretty strong pretty quickly in September. Take a look at the danceatl.org calendar and you'll see we get performances pretty much every weekend starting not with Labor Day weekend, but the following weekend. I won't go into previewing things because that's not what I do, but I just have to say it'll be nice (and busy!) to see performances picking up.
I believe I have roped my interns into covering the dance table at the Decatur Book Festival with me this weekend. Yay! For anyone out there who has some of these upcoming events, please get me dance table materials! Also, I'm hoping to get the e-newsletter going on a monthly basis with my intern/volunteer's help. So you can send me news items for that as well!! info@danceatl.org!

Friday, August 27, 2010

DanceATL calendar

My fantastic intern, Arielle, will be coming back to do her magic on the DanceATL calendars (danceatl.org) here very soon. Because there's been a big lull anyway, and to make sure things are up to date, I'm going to clear out all the recurring classes that she had entered last season and we'll start afresh for the fall.
All the performance info you guys have sent will stay put. No worries. And please, if you haven't sent me performance info, why not? I mean, don't you want to be on the calendar? :) (I know, one more place to send it to. That's an interesting problem that I don't currently have a solution to, but if you have thoughts on how to work that out, please let me know!)
Also, planning on having the dance table out in front of CORE during some of the Decatur Book Festival. How much will depend on if anyone can help me staff it? I have a toddler who won't stand still with me for long, so please, take at turn? Tens of thousands of people to tell about all the great dance happening in Atlanta! And I'll send an email too, but get me your materials for the table by Sept. 3 please. Yay dance!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Interesting traffic

So I've got google analytics on this blog and I'm intrigued about what happened at the end of July. National Dance Day and the Expo here in Atlanta apparently drew a lot of interest before the event. I know the only info online about it was pretty buried within other websites so the searches on that topic landed folks here. Which is great! I hope that helped get the word out about the event. What's kinda too bad is that we also had a dance table at the event and though it was rained out early, there should have been at least a few folks who saw it there. Yet the traffic after the event fell off drastically. So what we'd love to hope, that a bunch of folks saw the table and ran out to check out the blog, didn't happen. Though we don't really push the blog at the table so much as all the other events going on, so I guess it's not that surprising. I just hope the table does get more folks interested in dance and maybe turning out for some of the events around town. Whenever those start up again anyway (having kept up with the dance calendar for not quite a full season now, I will say August seems to take the cake on dead time! Calm before the storm, right guys??)
Anyhoo, just thoughts.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Resource Market for the Arts Oct. 4

Resource Market for the Arts
October 4, 2010
October is Funding for Arts Month at the Foundation Center!
You’re invited to come to the Resource Market for the Arts to network with peers and learn about available funding, resources, and services. There's information for everyone!
Preceding the market, Susan Weiner, executive director of the Georgia Council for the Arts, will speak on "Arts Advocacy Now!" Come for the program and stay for the market.
Monday, October 4, 2010
1:00-1:45pm Arts Advocacy Now!
2:00-4:00pm Resource Market
Rialto Center for the Arts
at Georgia State University
80 Forsyth Street NW
Atlanta, GA 30303
Watch our calendar for information about other programs and events in October.
Office of Cultural Affairs Foundation Center Fulton County Arts Council
Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund Georgia Council for the Arts South Arts

Dance Canvas preview

Cynthia Perry previews this fall's Dance Canvas performance, which will be Nov. 5-6 at the 14th Street Playhouse.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Aug. 1 meeting: Let's Talk Tech

Here are notes from the most recent DanceATL meeting on August 1. Thanks to Joe Futural for leading the discussion, Blake Beckham for performing and Mack Headrick for letting us into the back space at 7 Stages! Thanks to Rose Caudle for helping type up my messy notes. And of course, thanks everyone who made it out. Please feel free to comment if the notes are missing some things we talked about, or if you've had more thoughts since the meeting, please share them!

Welcome by Claire Horn
Performance by Blake Beckham from her upcoming Sept. 11 “American Muscle” at Eyedrum.
Joseph Futral presenting:
•    Joe introduces himself and his background with many dance and theater companies.
•    he wants Atlanta to be a force in national and international dance
•    production values-anything not the dancers front of house, stage, curtains etc.-anything distracting
•    safety of performers is the main priority
•    everyone is involved not just production director
•    not consistent production values he's see in Atlanta--NYC has good production values even in smaller or more “underground” venues-clean stage, all you see is deliberate/are choices made as part of the artistic product
•    The art is the most important-don’t want distractions, the product is the whole experience/take home for audience
•    dancers should let someone know if they’re having trouble seeing/moving etc.
o    e.g. if someone can’t see to get off the stage it’ll take longer between sections, which can also be distracting--don’t want too long blackouts
•    Hyperaware of all on stage—then make choices
•    If you’re one of 10 groups on festival program so it’s not you plot, can be hard to explain “what’s next?” to designer
•    Need to convey the moments in piece that need change in mood
o    for efficiency-can’t do too much detail
o    up and down lights=clean and professional
•    Nena Gilreath-they give tech dir. a cd with all cuts on it and cues are known to dancers, if high or low production values, efficiency and simplicity are important
•    Bare minimums-start there-if you only have 8 lights which colors? warm or cool, what mood?
•    working over time with the same tech staff helps understand piece
•    Joe realized once his lights were doing what dancers are already doing so he didn’t need as much, simplicity is key
•    Can give cues thru music – track times
•    Lighting designer should get to know the work-music given 1st  then come to rehearsal, the choreographer should expect it when hiring the designer
•    It will look arbitrary if was designed without input or time spent with the piece
•    We should as a community have higher expectations of production design
•    be intentional about the production work with same people over time-relationship
•    people afraid to ask for it because less money
•    give DVD of older versions if you have them, so they can become familiar that way too
•    artists don‘t feel empowered time and money make it hard to have high expectations
•    hopefully lighting designers are artists too
•    People leave-how many independent lighting designers live here?
•    danceATL should have a listing of tech staff online
•    Theatre different than dance—only somewhat different, one aspect that is different for e.g.--legs are an afterthought in theatre-because there’s a set, but they’re the only scenery in dance more important to look clean
•    Tom Skelton-he could spend a couple hours talking to a director and not talk about the art itself at all, but he will know they can work together
•    Malina Rodriguez-Joe compliments her, says we should hire her if she’s available
•    always losing people and expectations are also low, how collectively move forward to gain momentum-know resources
•    page on Dance ATL website also that lists various resources we all have: who has Marley for rent? Who has masking? Costumes? Etc.
•    Hold each other accountable too, some are willing to take standards so far as to say we won’t dance without marley
•    Exposure vs. Quality (again this trade off comes up) if they can’t tell the difference between what parts of your art can adapt? 
•    Do you want to work with them if they can’t respect your needs for a space? Though needs are different depending on the piece and can be adapted
•    If can adapt, specs for spaces also online take advantage in ATL-venues are scarce any space can be a theater vibe of a space-make disappear or use it, flooring resources, lights rental etc.
•    Nena- outdoor stage at ballethnic-cultural cul de sac, costumes and masking/curtains
•    Keif--Help ourselves first-donate to each other
•    Nena-turn hands to power instead of cups who’ll take care of it? Volunteers with training (parents), debriefings after shows, put wishlist out
•    lead by example-when you as director fix something out of place etc., it lets people know it’s important. This is about the art because people don’t pay attention when there are things to distract them.
•    Joe: You can’t assume venues know what they are doing.You can't assume the venues know what YOU are doing, either.
•    Expectations again and responsibility
•    Quality control team through Dance ATL?
•    Volunteers to go watch a rehearsal and comment on anything they see that needs to be corrected?Head out to dress or whatever to look for nit-picky things-volunteer list accessibility issues are safety issues
•    Dance ATL create a guide for general needs that can go to schools etc. to let them know what they need to provide
•    Basic considerations of light and sound who has performed in each space. Discuss with community, how was it?
•    Discussions on FB page perhaps? reviews of venues
•    relationship to technical director-need to have someone who knows that’s their role, not just light design and stage managing, also safety and scheduling etc.
•    Meetings to learn how to do? Or be volunteer at a show backstage to learn the ins and outs. Welcome at Ballethnic’s Cultural cul de sac and ATL ballet-upcoming shows. Contact Nena or Aly.
•    Malina as advisor?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

April discussion on media awareness/relations for Atlanta dance

So I'm finally getting around to typing up my notes from the April 25 DanceATL meeting! I hope someone finds it interesting or useful to have them if you couldn't make it to the meeting. Sorry the layout isn't all that clean or legible. Let me know if you can't read it at all or now without a headache. My contacts are info@danceatl.org, ot if you'd like to host an upcoming meeting!)

April 25 Discussion with Suzanne Van Atten A&E Editor at the AJC, and Thomas Bell, Partner at Chronicle LLC
Strategies for media need to emphasize the changes in media because of the internet
A brief history of recent changes:
Most dramatic changes in newspapers, they're thinner these days and where before the critics were niche, now tend to be overall "arts"
salaries weren't from the sales of papers but from advertising and classifieds in particular
the papers always lost money on dance reviews anyway, but did it because they could afford it
craigs list happened
how do the critical pieces fit into the new business model? a new model was needed
to pitch for a print review on a show you need to explain why it's of interest to the general public
why dance matters--specifically
doesn't have to be reductive, but needs a good communication of the relevance
60% or so of costs before went into printing and distribution of papers
news organizations that thrive now will figure out how to do it all online, especially revenue
the good news is that because online, the cost doesn't increase for size of the article, a review can actually be longer than it might have been in the printed paper
online people might be interested in video of rehearsal or dress rehearsal
you can get a flip camera to make creating content easier
online there's also a proliferation of independent media outlets like Burnaway.org and INTown
the possibility of citizen journalism--DIY easier now online
social media--traditional media picks it up if it seems interesting or popular
take advantage of the small paths
Suzanne comments that the nuts and bolts of everything may change but things remain the same-send the press release! there's more dance in the community than she's aware of, so let her know.
Email svanatten@ajc.com
her job now is to assign freelancers. needs to know at least 3 weeks out
find the fine line between being persistent with contacting her and being a pain in the ass.
Call or send a personal note to follow up after sending a release. give her an angle, a person with a story
things we mentioned earlier in the meeting, the autism and dance angle is good
new initiatives are good as are things going on in the "burbs" right now
collaborative events are more likely to get coverage
it would also be great to have a video clip
you can call and ask whom to talk to
DanceATL--media contacts as a membership benefit??
what's interesting? depends on how much intown/out etc.
get to the point, 2 sec to read--you can add an attachment with an additional backgrounder
good access for a journalist attending a show
what's a realistic expectation for what you'll get? limited--not a review most likely
if quoting, make sure to say where something was published
reviews are much more likely if you can do over more than one weekend
as a writer it's frustrating to do a preview, but the more resources that are available in the process, the easier it is for the writer
Blake B.--it's sad that we've lost reviews. we have to find other ways to document work.
Suzanne: and want it to be quality to get coverage, broad acessibility, not just of interest to the dance community.
Looking for interesting stories. Dance can be difficult to write about, need to find a universal story angle.
artistically revolutionary could be it but otherwise, reciprocal relationship, make sure to tell our friends to read the story too
if people don't click it's a problem with the overall editors, though they may realize there's a small, loyal audience
Tom B.--Writing about dance is really about translation from dance to words and you're translating for an audience who doesn't speak the language at all.
Cynthia Perry: Tom B's press release for Blake D.'s show "Your Head is Full of Stars" was best ever: clearly defined, pulled you in, facts up front
learn lessons from industry on promotion
Suzanne welcomes communication
Tom thinks we need to take matters into our own hands and think about our story then communicate it.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Blogging the process of choreography?

With this post (obviously against the idea): "Blogging about the Process of Choreography--Ugh!" Wendy Perron of Dance Magazine has started a debate on choreographers using blogs to detail their process of creating work. Dance Theater Workshop has responded and points also to Culturebot on the same topic. It's an interesting question both from the artists' side, whether blogging might actually disrupt the process as Ms. Perron suggests, or could actually help form ideas if someone's mind works in words as well as body in movement. And from the audience side, does getting a look into the nitty gritty day-to-day process of making dances make the end product more or less interesting/engaging? On one hand, there's possibly a feeling of "oh well, I know what they were going for from the blog and I totally don't see it" but on the other, as one commenter on Culturebot points out, getting into the process might be a great educational tool for those not as familiar with dance. I guess one problem with that argument is, if someone's not that knowledgeable or engaged in dance to begin with, would they seek out and spend the time to read a blog that goes into detail on the process? Good questions. And a very practical one that follows, if we don't blog about our process, what can we possibly update folks about on a regular basis? What would our online content be if what we're doing IS process, but we can't write about it?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Ballethnic's Cultural Cul de Sac

roem reviewed

Here's Cynthia Perry's review of gloATL's newest site-specific dance/art "roem" at the High Museum campus last weekend. The Woodruff estimated 2,000 people were there on Friday night. 2,000 people at one dance performance! Ok, so maybe some of the Nutcrackers out there pull in that many easily, but that there were such crowds for a piece that didn't have cute kids in it on sweltering nights outside in July is certainly impressive. Of course I hear it made it well nigh impossible to actually move for the dancers, but they got smart and brought in crowd control for Saturday's event.

Busy weekend! Dance for Life Expo and DanceATL meeting

This weekend is a busy one! Saturday afternoon at Atlantic Station is the Dance for Life Expo, in conjunction with Nigel Lithgoe of So You Think You Can Dance's National Dance Day (see my earlier post). There will be performances by local studios and a dance competition with the routine you can find video to learn online at dizzyfeetfoundation.org. DanceATL will have the dance table set up in one of the tents, so you can drop by and see us if you make it by!

And Sunday is the DanceATL bi-monthly meeting at 7 at 7 Stages back space (the black box). The performance will be by Blake Beckham and the topic is "Let's Talk Tech" with Joseph Futral: "A conversation with Joseph Futral to explore and understand the technical theatre side of dance and help dance artists communicate with stage technicians and designers in order to produce the most professional performance possible. This is as much for dancers as choreographers and artistic directors. Everyone involved in a performance affects and is affected by the things considered "technical". 
You can grab drinks and snacks at JavaLords out front and it's $5 at the door or free if you're a DanceATL member! 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

More sad nat'l news

The Ailey School has lost its director for the last 26 years, Denise Jefferson. The Ailey School memorial site has photos, video clip and links to other articles about her passing and a link to their blog where you can share memories.

National Dance Day

So there's a movement, led by Nigel Lythgoe producer of So You Think You Can Dance and Dizzy Feet Foundation founder and Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes (D-DC), to make July 31 "National Dance Day". Here in Atlanta that day there's a Dance For Life Expo at Atlantic Station (and sponsors Fox 5, which airs SYTYCD and 105.7 The Groove) complete with performances, info tables and a dance contest where the winner wins a trip to LA to see SYTYCD live.

Yay for more dance exposure and attention. Two things I was wondering though, first, why is it a different day than the International Dance Day on April 29 (spearheaded by UNESCO's Dance Council since 1982)? And secondly, if events like this are supposed to be for amateurs who've never danced but also dance students and professionals, why is it during the summer when dance students are out of school (though possibly attending summer workshops if they're lucky :) and most professional companies are in the off-season? SYTYCD may be airing, but the rest of us aren't necessarily dancing all that much on July 31. The April date is much more in the thick of things as far as being recital and performance season generally. But, I guess having two days to celebrate dance, internationally and nationally, while proving we're out of synch with the rest of the world (or just that we don't want to compete with National Shrimp Scampi Day-no really, google April 29 and see what you get!), does mean there are two days to celebrate dance, so more attention for our favorite hobby/profession. The more the merrier, right?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Daryl Foster writes about dancers in Atlanta

Here's an article in ArtsCriticATL.com written by LIFT co-founder Daryl Foster about a big problem for dancers in Atlanta: finding enough work to stay and BE dancers in Atlanta. It's something that DanceATL wants to help address by supporting the community and helping it grow. HOW? There's a critical mass that needs to be reached, where dancers and dance companies can gain support from the community at large. Or is that just my audience development brain talking?

Friday, July 9, 2010

More online dance videos

A site launched today, DancePulp, that has video interviews with lots of (mostly classical or contemporary ballet) dancers and choreographers etc. So if you're interested in hearing some behind the scenes sort of stories from Wendy Whelan, Christopher Wheeldon etc., this is the place to go (and the newest video is Safi Thomas on hip hop, so I assume future episodes won't just be ballet.) 

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dance Informa Magazine

I was contacted by Dance Informa Magazine, an online dance magazine based originally in Australia that has recently expanded to the US, about promoting their sweepstakes (see below.) It's pretty interesting--they chose Atlanta to be their base of operations in the US. I didn't ask what the rationale was for the location choice, but I'd like to think it's Atlanta's happening dance scene! :)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Double edged sword of gov't financing

Dance New Amsterdam in NYC is facing eviction. Here's an article about the situation that explains how the city's money helped build the new space DNA is in, only to turn around and pull the plug, leaving them in the lurch. You can see DNA's press statement and sign their online petition (or donate, of course!) on the DNA site. So as much as we all would love to see any new funding streams, including some of the ones proposed both by Atlanta a few years back (pre-recession, that's never gonna happen now) and at the state level in the recent session of the GA legislature (put your support behind it when it comes up again!) we need to also pay attention to whether the funds will be short-term or if we at least hope they can be sustainable. We (the arts community) will take either, of course, it's just a matter of planning to fit the available sources.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Year anniversary!

Hard to believe it's been a year since I started posting mine and your thoughts about dance in Atlanta on this blog! So over the last year, what's happened? Well, we're calling ourselves DanceATL now, and we have members! We need to solidify everything for the incorporation and nonprofit status (workshop about that with GA Lawyers for the Arts coming up.) We're *THAT* close to having the actual website ready to go, and we've enjoyed connecting with everyone who joined us at the meetings in Feb., Apr. and June-performers, speakers and guests.We also had the dance table set up at 28 events (counting all nights of a run as 1 event) from Sept. 2009 to April 2010!

A HUGE thank you to everyone who has been involved in making all this work!! We're all working on this as volunteers in addition to everything else we've got going on (and we all know how busy we stay with classes, rehearsals etc etc on top of other jobs usually.)

So now that we've got things this much underway, what do you think is our next direction? How can we serve the dance community for the next year and beyond?

(Oh, and I was curious about the new blogger templates so I switched to something new and a cleaner design. The blue is also close to the one in our logo!)

Lots of great video

ADF has a video blog "May we have this CyberDance?" that includes interviews with the artists who're performing at the festival this summer (including Pilobolus this week) and other snippets from behind the scenes. Certainly makes me wish I could be up there at least to see some of the performances if not to take the classes! I have some friends who live up that way still but I don't know that I've convinced any of them to go see things so I can live vicariously. :P I guess this video blog is some of that at least! And on the subject of video online taking the place of live performance (or augmenting it) here's a link to the NEA's report about the subject of audiences and their online vs. live viewing behaviors.

Getting up to date

So I've missed posting a few things because of a trip out of town, etc. We didn't have a big turnout for the DanceATL meeting, as expected, there were too many other things going on. Including brooks & company dance's beltline performance (preview posted belatedly here from ArtsCriticATL.com) and Beacon Dance at Eyedrum. But we had a good discussion, some of it on topic about the idea of a dance pass through DanceATL. One suggestion was more of a cupon book that folks could buy for a small price that would offer discounts to shows (and possibly other things that go along with it like restaurants close to venues etc.) This version is of course much less complicated that creating some sort of centralized ticketing. (Not to mention AtlanTIX is around for those companies that are members of ACPA.)

Another question that arose was whether we needed to discount things at all or merely bundle them together somehow. Everyone likes discounts from an audience perspective, but on the other hand we don't want to devalue our art, especially just the local productions, which tend to be less expensive than larger venues' productions who have to pay to bring companies from out of town. We don't want to encourage the idea that the local dance is less "worthy" than the imported-- but without the discount what's the incentive to buy a dance pass?

Also, on the calendar issue, we decided that it seems that the first weekend of many months is much less crowded event-wise than later ones, so we'll be holding the DanceATL bi-monthly meetings on the 1st Sunday of every other month, starting Aug. 1. We're looking for a space and a short performance--anyone like to host the meeting and perform? There was also the suggestion of having a community class taught by the performing group/choreographer some other time during that same month. Just to let people experience each other's work from the inside, and hopefully to help build community as we move together as well.

Also another article from ArtsCriticATL.com about this past weekend's happenings. This time about Zoetic's Choreography showcase and specifically about CORE Concert Dance Company's (led by Bala Sarasvati, from Athens) work in it.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Next meeting, June 27

So the next DanceATL meeting will be Sunday, June 27 at 7 pm at CORE  Studios in Decatur. Gathering Wild will be performing. I've already sent out an email and I hope some folks can make it, but as people responded, I've found out it wasn't really the best weekend because there's a lot going on. I'm glad there is, I just should've paid more attention before choosing to have the meeting then! The discussion for the meeting with be just that same issue--I want to get all the event info for next season that you guys have already so we can put it all on a big calendar and see what's up. Maybe we can plan the next few DanceATL meetings so they don't conflict with as many things? And then of course I'll also have all the events (that are confirmed dates at least) to put on the google calendar too. And we can also discuss the possibility of DanceATL creating a Dance Pass for all or part of the season. Sound good?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

gloATL NY performance reviews

From ArtsCriticATL and Cynthia Perry a review of gloATL's work "Halo" at New York's DUO Multicultural Arts Center.
And from the NY Times, another look at the piece by Roslyn Sulcas. 

From DanceUSA, passing of Jonathan Wolken

It is with great sadness that we share the news about the passing of Jonathan Wolken, co-founder of Pilobolus Dance Theatre. He died Sunday night in New York after being ill for many years with myelofibrosis, a disorder of the bone marrow.

Pilobolus originated when Wolken, a Dartmouth philosophy major, and fellow student Moses Pendleton met at a dance class taught by Alison Chase. The men began performing after graduation in 1971 and were later joined by fellow students Robby Barnett and Michael Tracy and dance teachers Martha Clark and Chase in 1973. They would form an unusual artistic collaborative from which works emerged from a free-spirited group dynamic.

The company relocated to Western Connecticut in the mid-'70s. First Clark in 1978 and then Pendleton in 1983 would move on to create their own dance companies, but the quartet would remain for many years creating works that became known for their athleticism, sensuality and theatricality.

A brief obituary is available from the Hartford Courant.
Wolken was an inspiring artist and great pioneer of the dance field. He will be truly missed.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

gloATL work in NYC

Cynthia Perry's ArtsCriticATL.com article about gloATL's upcoming work, premiering in NYC but created in ATL.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Slow summer?

So we're officially into summer, in which most dance folks take off after a busy season and possibly attend workshops and the like. Is that true? Let me know what's up if you've got things going on. And you can always post on the DanceATL Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/danceatl with events!
And I haven't posted anything in a week, sorry about that. But there certainly is less going on to post. I did, however, go ahead and update the google calendar at danceatl.org. It's got seasons for the ATL Ballet, Ferst Center and Rialto in there and the ongoing classes are still listed. An idea for June's meeting, instead of having a panel discussion, how about we all take turns telling each other what we're doing next season? Put up a big paper calendar and write everything we know of on it. My intern who'll be back in the fall (unless there's someone who wants to help out for the summer, please??!) can then just go ahead and enter it on the calendar. And I think that will spark some discussion, just talking about what we're going to be doing. What do you guys think?

Thursday, May 13, 2010


I borrowed this from my friend and ex-CORE dancer jhon r. stronks, and he's made a facebook page for it. So go and "like" it, and take up the saying and make it yours- "yay dance"! :)

LIFT preview

Preview of this weekend's performance LIFT from ArtsCriticATL.com.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A funny take on dance crit

From Dance Mag and Ohad Naharin: "Ohad's Advice to Critics"

An interseting twist to the dance criticism discussion

Here's a link I just got through a Dance Mag tweet: "We Stink! by KT Niehoff" from Seattle's The Stranger. (An aside, KT was almost the third of the choreographers commissioned for THREE that CORE premiered last season until scheduling changes made it impossible.) KT goes off on the reviewer from this Seattle weekly for a review her work received.  The comments are the most interesting part (aside from the stripper comment) from a lot of folks saying that the broader audience of the paper doesn't even want to read dance reviews, much less ones that are really in-depth or specific to the history of dance etc. The feedback reminds me of the comment from Tom Bell at our last event (which I mean to transcribe sometime, I promise!) about how he felt his job back when he wrote about dance for Creative Loafing was to "translate" what he saw on stage for the readers.

KT writes, "Help us to think more about our actions, ask more from our relationships, and get more from our interactions. Learn more about the art form of contemporary dance, which has the unique ability to free our minds to think nonlinearly and push into raw emotion, involuntary kinetic kickback and dream states. They "teach" this natural way of thinking out of us in school so completely we are actually afraid of it ("I don't know anything about dance"—i.e.—"I am scared if there isn't an actual plotline I could get it 'wrong' and look like an asshole")."

And as much as I obviously like freeing my mind by watching dance, I think for the uninclined to contemporary art and dance in particular, that just is asking for too much effort. I don't think it's necessarily that people are scared of looking dumb if there's no plot, I just think it's just easier to have things spoon fed to you where you don't have to think. I agree with KT we are "taught" to be passive and "dumb" as an audience in general--in most things we consume on TV etc. are pretty mindless. I think the biggest question is how can you convince people who aren't inclined at the start to put in the effort (but at least some of whom we have to believe would really get it once they did) that it really can be worth it?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Atlanta Ballet this weekend: Sheer Exhilaration

A preview of the Atlanta Ballet's upcoming show this weekend, from ArtsCriticATL.com and another from the Marietta Daily Journal.
And then there's Lift and Fieldwork Showcase mid-May and we're into the summer, when a lot of dance takes off for the season. Though there actually are a few things going on coming up, a couple of summer performances and some workshops. The intern has officially taken off for the summer, though, so I need to get around to some updating to the Danceatl.org google calendar. Check back there and let me know if you notice anything missing!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Moulin Rouge, the ballet

Here's a preview of Atlanta Ballet's upcoming season with Moulin Rouge the ballet and both story ballets and contemporary choreography rounding out the line-up.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Review of Ballethnic

Here's a review from last weekend's performance by Ballethnic from ArtsCriticATL.com by Cynthia Bond Perry. She tells us, "Some good news: [Calvin] Gentry is returning to Atlanta where he plans to pursue his college degree while performing with Ballethnic." Yay for people moving (back) here or staying here to dance!

And thanks to everyone who came out to the Barre 2 Bar this Sunday evening. The discussion was informative and I will post some notes when I get time to transcribe them (I would make my lovely intern Arielle do it, but she was at the event and unfortunately, I think that used up her hours for this week. And it's her last day today so thank you, Arielle! Because of her hard work, we have the google calendar at danceatl.org mostly up to date. I hope to be joined soon by a summer intern who can keep it up.)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tonight's panel

I'm excited about tonight's panel at the DanceATL and Atlanta Ballet "Barre 2 Bar" event at Park Tavern. We have Thomas Bell, writer extraordinare, and since the last post we've confirmed Suzanne VanAtten, Arts & Entertainment Editor at the AJC, and Brian Wallenberg, dancer with the Ballet and their Social Media Director. So we should have all forms of media covered, so bring questions and let's strategize how to best work together to let people know that there's DANCE happening here in Atlanta!! :)

Here's the updated flyer (also with photo credits, yes yes!)

Monday, April 19, 2010

An Opportunity to Engage with the Arts Community at MONDAY's March - a message from Atlanta Artist, Blake Beckham

I'm not going to put her cell phone number up here, but I'm pasting the email. If you want to contact her, please do so via email or email me at info@danceatl.org to get her cell phone number. Hope to see you dancing at the Capitol tomorrow!

From Blake:

I'm writing to find out if you know about Monday's march on the capitol protesting the elimination of Georgia Council for the Arts. I am working with keif & friends to put together a guerrilla performance. If you are interested in sharing your work, please call my cell phone or email me back with yours.

Here's the idea:
Roll up a truck and park it downtown (Brought to you by Dance Truck). Activate it as a platform for performing arts. Dance, music, readings, theater...open to it all. Lets speak with our actions, make our work present. Heighten visibility. Show the vibrancy and diversity of arts across Georgia. Expect the unexpected. Viral videos and tweets shoot across town.
Today I will be doing the outreach to arts orgs and individual artists. Groups who want to participate need to CONFIRM with me or keif. There will be a check-in process at the truck (or another central location) so we can keep performers rolling on & off  - and the action going - 

Performers must be willing to use the raw space of the truck which will likely be 7 x 12 ft. Audio and tech specs are tbd. Right now we don't know if we'll have the capacity for plugging in bands. We're asking for offerings/happenings of five minutes or less to allow for lots of participation. If you really want to present something longer or conceptual, just let me know. 

If parking the truck turns out to be a bust, we'll move into the streets and on the steps. 

Please know that you will need to be open in terms of the time commitment. We meet at The Rialto at 1pm, and then will walk to the capitol. We don't really know what to expect in terms of the duration of the event after that.

If performing is not in the cards, I hope you will just ATTEND
CALL ME! I need help pulling this off and am very excited about the possibilities.

Rialto Center season line up (all of it, but including dance)

From the AJC and Ms. Perry, an overview of the Rialto's season coming up. The dance includes Urban Bush Women and Taylor, flamenco and Brazilian music/dance. Taylor was here a couple years ago at the Rialto and Urban Bush Women was here a few years back with Emory for a residency and performances, but always good to have a chance to see them both (I didn't make either one of those last time I don't think...)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Next weekend, next DanceATL event!

March on the capitol for arts--or maybe dancing in the streets?? Monday!

Facebook event page about the march for GA Council for the Arts on Monday from 1-3 p.m. It starts at the Rialto and goes to the Capitol. We're thinking about bringing the Dance Truck (or a smaller version of it anyway) to give a literal platform for artists to get some visibility doing what they do best, make art!

The link for contacting your representatives. They won't be in session on Monday but they will be voting on Tuesday, so come out to show your support for continued funding for the Georgia Council for the Arts. Being the only state without an arts agency/funder will be so embarrassing otherwise! :(  Not to mention the economic impact of more lost jobs and the cultural impact of loss of programming!

For today's nonpolitical blog entry: Ferst, dance and tech

The Ferst Center's dance offerings next season previewed, including a dance and technology partnership, from Cynthia Bond Perry and artscriticatl.com.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

More about the end of GCA--act now!

The email update I received this morning from GACAA:

GA Council for the Arts Budget Zeroed Out - Please Act NOW

The House Appropriations Committee voted yesterday to eliminate the Georgia Council for the Arts budget for FY 2011. GCA will not exist.
This means:

1 - Georgia will be the only state and territory that will have no state arts agency.

2 - We will lose the Grassroots Arts Program that ensures there is arts programming in every Georgia County.

3 - Georgia will lose tax money that is reinvested in our state through the National Endowment for the Arts. This money is entirely contingent on the GCA budget being at least $900,000. This money from the NEA funds programs in every Georgia County.
4 - We will lose even more jobs in this economic crisis.
If you value the arts in Georgia, please follow the "Take Action" link on this page to contact your legislators and make clear the impact of the loss of GCA funds to your organization and to our state. 
Remember that investing in the arts pays off both in tax revenue, jobs, tourism - it's one industry that is alive and well in spite of the overall economy.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

This weekend is HOT and next weekend is scalding!

Check out the list of performances for this weekend and next on danceatl.org (still just the google calendar...working on the rest of the website, again, please send info about classes, spaces etc.) I think we can split up the dance table stuff for this weekend, but next weekend there's just too much! Whew! So look for it this weekend at Anthology and Ground Delivery, and next weekend at the Emory Dance Company show (since the intern can take it easily since she's in it.) I think I can take it over to the Inman Park Dance Fest and Aly has Shorts 5. Can anyone cover any of the other shows? If so, let me know and we'll work out a rendezvous to get you the goods.
And to cap off all this lovely dancing, I'd like to invite you all to the 2nd DanceATL meeting on the evening of the 25th. If you're at the Inman Park Dance Festival you can come right after it, we're going to start around 7. Our speaker, Mr. Tom Bell, will be leading a discussion about dance coverage in town (with possible additional guests) and the performance will be by Project 7 Dance. Let's get some folks out (even if it's a bit last minute, sorry guys) and fill that big ole room with dancers and dance lovers on the 25th!

No more GCA? at all? Seriously?!

So you may have heard, or maybe you haven't, that the GA Assembly is at the point of cutting out the Georgia Council for the Arts ENTIRELY. I repost an email:

Dear Arts Advocates and Arts Supporters:

We have learned that actions are underway in the State legislature to eliminate the Georgia Council for the Arts.

This will mean that Georgia will be the only state and/or territory in the nation that will have no state arts agency.

Please contact your state legislators immediately to let them know that our state needs and deserves an arts council.

Laura Lieberman, Immediate Past President

Georgia Assembly of Community Arts Agencies

Here's the link to take action 
And here's an article about the situation from ArtsCriticATL.com

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Trey McIntyre Project this weekend

I got behind on posting, but here's an interview from Cynthia Perry with Trey McIntyre dancer, John Michael Schert. Look for the DanceATL table there and pick up info about all the amazing performances by local dancers happening in two more weeks! (Also, we are tentatively having the next DanceATL meeting on Sunday, Apr. 25, so save the evening to come meet up with your Atlanta dance friends!)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

NY Times: dancers tweet

This article was in the printed edition yesterday of the NY Times (not in the arts section but below the fold on the front page!) Does the backstage aspect make the performances more interesting? They seem to say so. Sort of similar to the tabloid celebrity interviews "what's your favorite food?" Something about humanizing the artist perhaps? I haven't gone to follow these dancers on Twitter yet...I wonder how many new followers they got because of the article??

Monday, March 29, 2010

April 29, International Dance Day

Next month it's Dance Day! Here's the announcement from the International Dance Council (part of UNSECO, with one of the most outdated websites still functioning: www.cid-unseco.org.)

"The United Nations proclaimed 2010 as International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures and designated UNESCO as lead agency in this celebration, having regard to its experience of more than 60 years in advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples.

Irina Bokova, the new Director-General of UNESCO, has proposed a universal vision, which she has called the “new humanism”; a vision open to the entire human community, providing a humanist response to globalization and crisis, aiming at the safeguarding of social cohesion and the preservation of peace.

Dance, being a central part of every culture, constitutes the ideal means for bringing together people from different countries. Festivals promote in the most lively manner reciprocal knowledge and respect of diversity; there are hundreds of millions attending international dance festivals each year. Teachers offering classes in foreign countries provide immediate bridges of understanding ingrained into the bodies of dancers; there are tens of thousands of dance teachers crossing national borders yearly. Congresses and open conferences provide opportunities to showcase one's work to an audience of peers; there are dozens of international meetings of dance researchers, historians and critics in any given year.

Even outside festivals, classes or conferences, simply watching on television a dance from a foreign country offers the most striking, appealing and convincing image of another ethnic group.

For vividly illustrating cultural diversity, for embodying rapprochement, there is no better means than dance."

Prof. Alkis Raftis
President of the International Dance Council CID

This is similar to Dance/USA's conference theme this year "Dancing Across Borders." I guess it's the hot topic right now? So is anyone doing anything international or crossing cultural boundaries they'd like to share? CORE's going to Guatemala in May and the ABUNDANCE festival in Sweden in June. Or is anyone working with folks here who are from other countries? Good Moves is teaching dance to some refugee girls from an international school in Decatur.

And how are you going to celebrate Dance Day in general? What should DanceATL do??

Friday, March 26, 2010


Ivan at KSU sent me this link to an article about the piece in this weekend's Atlanta Ballet show.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Advocacy alert--help pass HB 1049 and support the arts in GA

HB 1049 - Please call TODAY

Friends -the Rules Committee meeting has been pushed to tomorrow, Thursday, 2pm. We have one more day to continue calls & emails! Our lobbyist says KEEP THE HEAT ON!! We are still not on the Rules agenda - HB1049 will die if we do not make it on the Rules agenda this week.  If you have not contacted members of the Rules Committee please do so ASAP.

ACTION NEEDED IMMEDIATELY:  Email/Call members of the RULES Committee asking for SUPPORT of HB1049 (See members & contact information listed below)
The message should be brief-add a personal note on why this is important to you.
Subject: Support HB1049
Message:  With strong bi-partisan support, please move HB 1049 to the Rules Committee agenda. Support  HB1049 this year because it provides our county with an economic development tool kit that will not only stabilize the cultural industry but will support a range of economic development initiatives so desperately needed in our own community.

Rules Committee:
House Rules Committee (contact list)
available here.

To read more about HB1049:
Atlanta Business Chronicle article
Marietta Daily Journal article
Bill status and full text from the Georgia General Assembly website
About economic impact of Arts in Georgia

Atlanta Ballet Four Seasons and Celeste Miller too

Two more previews for all the dance taking place this weekend from Blake Beckham and Creative Loafing--the Atlanta Ballet's Four Seasons and more and Celeste Miller's show at 7 Stages, The Annunciation...Sort of: Mary Says No.

More on dance criticism, a whole institute, actually

Thanks to Douglas Scott, who brought this to my attention:
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and American Dance Festival (ADF) recently announced they are seeking applicants for the 2010 NEA Arts Journalism Institute for Dance Criticism for professional print, online, radio, and television journalists. The Institute will offer journalists immersion in one of the world's premiere modern dance festivals, held on the campus of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.

The program is designed for professional journalists interested in refining their skills in writing about dance and analyzing choreography. During the program, fellows will write reviews, observe classes, participate in movement sessions, meet with choreographers, funders, and other dance professionals, and analyze the role of today's dance critic.

To apply, applicants must submit the following materials: a letter specifying reasons for wishing to attend the institute, a resume, three samples of dance criticism, and two references with names, addresses, and phone numbers. All applications must be received by Friday, April 16.

More dance videos

This has come up a couple places the last few days so I guess they're doing a big push to get viewers on Tendu TV. As far as I can tell their mission is to take dance to the computer-savvy masses. News is that they'll be putting Dance on Camera entries from the past on Hulu. That's kinda cool for most of us who didn't go to the Dance on Camera events to begin with. And it's not just your prime time TV online. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Preview of Pilobolus

Blake Beckham's preview for Creative Loafing of the Pilobolus show coming up this Thursday night at the Ferst Center. And does anyone want to take the DanceATL table and bring it back? (I don't know that I can get tickets for the volunteer for this one, they tend to sell out!)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Emory Arts Criticism Symposium

I want to thank everyone at Emory Creativity and the Arts for hosting the symposium on arts criticism today. I found the discussion really interesting, both on the panel and with the wide variety of people present, professors, students, artists, arts administrators, and of course editors and arts writers. My suggestion is to continue the topic of the future of arts criticism and focus it on dance in Atlanta specifically at the next DanceATL meeting in April (date to be announced hopefully soon!) I hope that people find this a useful topic to address? Please comment!

Today's symposium was on the role of the academy (higher education, though the early exposure to arts in elementary etc. came up many times as being very important and currently being reduced or completely eliminated.) From a practical level, those of us in small dance companies or making work as individual artists have a harder time getting coverage for what we do for one because we often can't afford to do more than a one-shot show, and also because as newspapers reduce their staff, the single writer left to cover all disciplines can only focus so much on dance. Though fortunately we do have two dance writers in town again, one of whom, Blake Beckham, was on today's panel. A question on the practical side was what we can do to continue to support critical writing about arts. One thought is to follow the model of Dance Source Houston, who uses some of their membership and other funding support to pay writers to cover the dance in Houston. Is that a model we would be interested in pursuing here? It is necessary especially in a vacuum where there are little to no voices speaking about dance online or in print. We have come out of that vacuum to resume some coverage, thank you to the editors and writers who are working to do that, but I'm sure no one would resent more voices being added to the discussion!
And now it's a beautiful day and I'm going to the park with my daughter! Enjoy spring! (before it rains again...)