June 2018 In Dance

This year NDP also established a new, an- nual fund for grantees to support additional touring partners in regions that usually re- ceive less dance touring including the South, Southwest, Midwest, Hawaii, and Alaska. While new sources of touring support have developed in the last few years, chore- ographers continue to face a number of chal- lenges when trying to tour work. Notably, costs of living have increased while touring fees have remained somewhat consistent over the past decade, making it more challeng- ing for touring to be a profitable enterprise. While touring in the 1970s and 1980s could be a viable source of income and a means of amortizing creation costs over multiple years, it now often barely enables a choreographer to break even without significant grant and fundraising support. Moreover, when work- ing with freelance dancers it can be hard for a team to commit to multiple weeks on the road as they balance additional work, teaching, and family schedules. Overall there seems to be a sincere relationship between the diminishing stability of large-scale com- panies and touring support—with touring in- creasingly a financially risky endeavor large companies are less able to support consistent work for dancers, leading them to take free- lance jobs that destabilize the market and complicate schedules, making it even harder to tour when the rare opportunity arises. There are few large companies—Alvin Ailey, Mark Morris Dance Group, and Paul Taylor being examples—that continue to have sta- ble, consecutive company models, primarily because of their robust touring schedules. As January approached after a successful 2017 touring Tesseract domestically together Rashaun Mitchell + Silas Riener and I con- sidered participating in APAP. The annual conference of the Association of Performance

Arts Professionals in New York City is a high-intensity convening of presenters and dance companies from around the world who, in the span of 3-4 days, go to count- less performances and meetings in hopes of making connections that will lead to touring opportunities. Begun in the 1960s as a consortium of college-based present- ers, it has grown into one of the largest international marketplaces for perfor- mance, with its frantic pace often leading to partial showings in cramped studios and hurried conversations that, at least in my experience, rarely lead to future com- missions, though I know artists for whom it has been fruitful. Nevertheless, with a desire to make the leap to international touring we screened the 3D film (technical requirements of the work made it impos- sible to do a partial staged performance and dancers were busy with other show- ings) and hoped for the best. While receiv- ing financial support makes touring pos- sible, the first step is always capturing the interest of a curator or presenter, a pro- cess that I imagine has in some ways re- mained consistent over the past years and in other ways radically changed as the landscape for touring has shifted. In a future article for In Dance I’ll seek to explore what work is chosen for tour- ing, why, and how that process of pitch- ing to presenters has changed in a round- table conversation with choreographers, funders, and presenters. KATY DAMMERS is the Assistant Curator and Ar- chive Manager at The Kitchen. She also works as the General Manager for Rashaun Mitchell + Silas Riener and is part of the inaugural Dance Writing Laboratory at the National Center for Choreogra- phy in Akron, Ohio.


Koresh Dance Company / photo by Bicking

CubaCaribe Festival of Dance and Music / photo by Andy Mogg

Two weeks of performance celebrating the cultural traditions of the Caribbean and its Diaspora Unified by the theme, The Movements of Migration, this year’s festival artists will perform works examining migration throughout the Caribbean diaspora. “The history of humanity is one of movement, of migrations in search of neces- sities like food, refuge, safety, a better climate and survival. Today we see the migrations of people complicated with differing ideologies of borders, nationhood and belonging,” says Artistic Director Ramón Ramos Alayo. “In the Caribbean diaspora, migrations were in response to slavery and gave birth to new cultures, customs and artistic expressions, including some of the greatest master works the world has known. This hybrid, mixed and syncretized sensibility is at the heart of Caribbean culture.”


WEEKEND 1 Fri-Sat, Jun 15-16, 7pm; Sun, Jun 17, 4pm Odell Johnson Performing Arts Cen- ter at Laney College, Oakland Alayo Dance Company will perform the World Premiere of Calle , co-cho- reographed by Ramos and Jamaica Itule, featuring seven dancers and live music, and exploring the gap between “high art” and “street art,” concert dance and dances that happen in the street or calle. Also performing Goodbye (2016) and Manos de Mujeres Cubanas (world premiere) which delves into the complex role of Cuban women today and celebrates how their powerful hands – literally and meta- phorically – continue to sustain. WEEKEND 2 Fri-Sat, Jun 22-23, 8pm Brava Theater, SF Performing on this program are Aguas Da Bahia (Director, Tania Santiago), La Cali Dance (Director, Yismari Tellez Ramos), El Wah Movement Dance The- ater (Director, Collete Eloi), Nicaragua Danza, Hijos de Maiz (Director, Luis Leon), Alafia Dance Ensemble (Direc- tor, Mariella Morales), Dimensions Dance Theater (Director, Deborah Vaughn) and Dandha da Hora & Yabás Dance Co.,Cheza Nami Foundation, Musicians-SambaDá (Director, Dandha Da Hora).

Theater Showing and Discussion Thu, Jun 28, 7pm Museum of the African Diaspora, SF Artist talk and excerpts of the work in progress by poet, performance artist, and playwright Paul Flores, We Have Iré – an exploration of Cuban artists, immigration and Afro-Cuban religious themes. Featuring DJ Leydis, Ramón Ramos Alayo, recorded music by Yosvani Terry and video by Eli Jacobs- Fantauzzi. Lecture: Current Conditions for Cul- tural Exchanges Between Cuba and U.S. with Bill Martinez Wed, Jun 27, 7pm Museum of the African Diaspora, SF Bill Martinez is an immigration at- torney who has also produced and managed cultural events in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1973. Marti- nez has worked in the Community Law Collective (’74-’79), New College of California School of Law (’79-’83) and the Volunteer Legal Services Program of the Bar Association of San Francisco (’84-’93). In 1981, he co-founded the Encuentro del Canto Popular, a San Francisco-based Latin American music festival. His work with the Encuentro led him to become one of the nation’s leading experts in U.S.-Cuba cultural exchanges and artists’ visas. He co- founded the Latino Entertainment Partners, which produced historically significant concerts of Cuban artists.


2017 Dance with Pride Contingent photos by Jay Adams

Rhythm & Motion together with Dancers’ Group and other local dance organizations are gathering a contingent of danc- ers for the 2018 San Francisco Pride Parade.

This year’s parade theme is Generations of Strength.

Anyone can be a part of the dance contingent – no previous experience required! Rhythm & Motion will lead participants in dancing along the parade route. Learn the moves online and at free rehearsals.

Details and registration at rhythmandmotion.com



in dance JUN 2018

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