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The Dance Community Wants You to Get Out the Vote

Without the regular bustle of the fall performance season, much of the dance community has a rare amount of free time on its hands—and it's being put to good use. Many artists and organizations are redirecting their energy from the rehearsal studio to an extremely important cause: urging the community to vote. And, of course, they're doing it with a signature dance flair.

Here are just a few of the get-out-the-vote efforts and events happening online and across the country. For more arts-related resources about voting, including the deadline to register in your state, check out Dance/USA's November 2020 Election Toolkit.


Dance the Vote

Dance the Vote, based in St. Louis, Missouri, has commissioned a mix of local and national choreographers to create works intended to inspire participation in the election. The first few episodes, available on YouTube, include groups like Versa-Style Dance Company and Heidi Latsky Dance, with more to come.

DISCO RIOT's Move American

Leading up to the presidential election, San Diego–based organization DISCO RIOT is presenting Move American, a series of short dance films addressing social-justice, political and human-rights issues. New films will be released each Monday through November 2. One of these is Derion Loman's "By any means necessary," a visceral duet with Simon Greenberg that tackles voter suppression against a stark desert background.

Paul Taylor Dance Company

Paul Taylor Dance Company took to Instagram to pose a simple but poignant message: "To have a voice, we must vote!"

Pro Dance League's Turnout the Vote

Courtesy Pro Dance League

Online dance-class platform Pro Dance League's election efforts are all about the numbers. Its goal? To register at least 1,000 new voters through its Turnout the Vote campaign.

Dance Lab New York and Supermajority

Choreographic incubator Dance Lab New York has partnered with Supermajority, a women's activism group, for an October 2 virtual fundraiser called Celebrating Freedom of Expression. The evening will be hosted by Misty Copeland and includes a first look at Jeannette, a brand-new musical based on the life of Jeannette Rankin, the first woman elected to Congress. For an extra dose of inspiration, the event will feature choreography by Karla Puno Garcia, Karen Sieber and Yusha-Marie Sorzano. Tickets are available for purchase here.

American Ballet Theatre

The dancers of American Ballet Theatre have taken to social media to remind us that voting isn't just about picking who will lead. It's about standing up for the issues that are most important to you.

Pacific Northwest Ballet

Whether you're voting by mail, in person or dropping your ballot at an official box, Pacific Northwest Ballet doesn't want anyone to forget this final step: the celebratory voting dance. Exercising your right to vote is always cause for celebration.

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Courtesy Ava Noble

Go Behind the Scenes of USC Kaufman’s Virtual Dance Festival

Now more than ever, the students of USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance are embodying their program's vision: "The New Movement."

As the coronavirus pandemic stretches on, the dance world continues to be faced with unprecedented challenges, but USC Kaufman's faculty and BFA students haven't shied away from them. While many schools have had to cancel events or scale them back to live-from-my-living-room streams, USC Kaufman has embraced the situation and taken on impressive endeavors, like expanding its online recruitment efforts.

November 1 to 13, USC Kaufman will present A/Part To/Gather, a virtual festival featuring world premieres from esteemed faculty and guest choreographers, student dance films and much more. All semester long, they've rehearsed via Zoom from their respective student apartments or hometowns. And they haven't solely been dancing. "You have a rehearsal process, and then a filming process, and a production process of putting it together," says assistant professor of practice Jennifer McQuiston Lott of the prerecorded and professionally edited festival.

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