Program for the 2020 Dance Magazine Awards

Welcome to the 2020 Dance Magazine Awards

A tradition dating back to 1954, the Dance Magazine Awards recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to the world of dance.

Thank you to our sponsors First Republic and Freed of London, and to Jody and John Arnhold | Arnhold Foundation

All net proceeds go to the Harkness Promise Awards, which provide support to early-career choreographers. To make a donation, visit

Welcome Remarks

Joanna Harp, CRO & Publisher, Dance Media


Montage of choreography by Alonzo King for Alonzo King LINES Ballet including:

Sand (2016)

Music: Charles Loyd and Jason Moran

Dancers: Adji Cissoko, Robb Beresford

Lighting Design: Axel Morgenthaler

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

Biophony (2015)

Music: Bernie Krause

Dancer: Courtney Henry

Lighting Design: Axel Morgenthaler

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

The Propelled Heart (2015)

Music: Lisa Fischer and JC Maillard

Dancers: Jeffrey Van Sciver, Michael Montgomery and Company

Lighting Design: Axel Morgenthaler

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

Pole Star (2019)

Music: Van-Anh Vo

Dancers: Babatunji and Company

Video Design: Jamie Lyons

Lighting: Dylan Phillips

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

Triangle of Squinches (2011)

Music: Mickey Hart

Dancer: Keelan Whitmore

Set Design: Christopher Haas

Lighting: Axel Morgenthaler

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

Figures of Speech (2017)

Music: Philip Perkins and Alexander MacSween

Dancers: Michael Montgomery and Company

Lighting: David Finn

Costumes: Robert Rosenwasser

William Forsythe presenting to ALONZO KING


Excerpt from Mr. TOL E. RAncE

Choreographed and performed by Camille A. Brown

Music by Brandon McCune, Kurt "KC" Clayton, Jonathan Melville Pratt, and Scott Patterson

Live accompaniment by Scott Patterson

Dramaturgy by Talvin Wilks and Kamilah Forbes

Theater coaching by J. Michael Kinsey

Set design by Philip Treviño

Costume design by Carolyn Mechka Cherry

Lighting by Burke Wilmore

Animation by Isabela Dos Santos

Filmed by Nel Shelby

Theresa Ruth Howard Presenting to CAMILLE A. BROWN


Excerpt from Lazuli Sky

Choreographed by Will Tuckett for Birmingham Royal Ballet

Music by John Adams

Designs by Samuel Wyer and Nina Dunn

Lighting by Peter Teigen

Ben Stevenson Presenting to CARLOS ACOSTA


Kyle Marshall Excerpts:


Choreographed and performed by Kyle Marshall

Costumes by Meagan Woods

Text: "I've Been to the Mountaintop" by Martin Luther King Jr.


Choreographed by Kyle Marshall

Performed by Oluwadamilare Ayorinde, Kyle Marshall and Myssi Robinson

Babylon—a playlist of scores/Jah (in progress)

Choreographed and performed by Kyle Marshall

Marjani Forté-Saunders Excerpts:

A Prophet's Tale: Portrait of the Lyricist (in progress)

Choreographed and performed by Marjani Forté-Saunders

Music by Everett Saunders

being Here…

Choreographed by Marjani Forté-Saunders

Performed by Rebecca Bliss, Tendayi Kuumba, Jasmine Hearn, Autumn Scoggan, Alice Sheppard, and Samantha Speis

Music by Everett Saunders

Set design by Johann Mittnacht

Lighting design by Carol Mullins



Laurieann Gibson teaching at The Main Event

Courtesy Brian Friedman

Brian Friedman Presenting to LAURIEANN GIBSON


Video for Darren Walker compiled by Miami City Ballet

Copyright © 2020 Alexander Iziliaev

Lourdes Lopez Presenting to DARREN WALKER


Excerpt from Church

Choreographed by Debbie Allen and Terry Beeman

Performed by DADA Ensemble 2013

George Faison Presenting to DEBBIE ALLEN

Closing Remarks

Jennifer Stahl, Editor in Chief, Dance Magazine

The selection committee for the 2020 Dance Magazine Awards includes:

Dance Magazine contributor Joseph Carman

The Dance Edit editor in chief Margaret Fuhrer

Dance Media publisher/CRO Joanna Harp

MoBBallet founder Theresa Ruth Howard

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre artistic director Susan Jaffe

Dance Magazine editor at large Wendy Perron

Former American Dance Festival director Charles L. Reinhart

Dance Magazine editor in chief and Dance Media content director Jennifer Stahl

Dance Magazine Awards team:

Nicole Buggé, Josephine Daño, Kelsey Grills, Joanna Harp, Amy Jones, Jennifer Stahl

Dance Magazine Awards produced by Nel Shelby Productions:

Producer/Director/Editor Nel Shelby

Editor Caroline Haidet

Project Manager Cherylynn Tsushima

Latest Posts

Stark Photo Productions, Courtesy Harlequin

Why Your Barre Can Make or Break Your At-Home Dance Training

Throughout the pandemic, Shelby Williams, of Royal Ballet of Flanders (aka "Biscuit Ballerina"), has been sharing videos that capture the pitfalls of dancers working from home: slipping on linoleum, kicking over lamps and even taking windows apart at the "barre." "Dancers aren't known to be graceful all of the time," says Mandy Blackmon, PT, DPT, OSC, CMTPT, head physical therapist/medical director for Atlanta Ballet. "They tend to fall and trip."

Many dancers have tried to make their home spaces as safe as possible for class and rehearsal by setting up a piece of marley, like Harlequin's Dance Mat, to work on. But there's another element needed for taking thorough ballet classes at home: a portable barre.

"Using a barre is kinda Ballet 101," says 16-year-old Haley Dale, a student in her second year at American Ballet Theatre's Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School. She'd bought a portable barre from Harlequin to use at her parents' home in Northern Virginia even before the pandemic hit. "Before I got it, honestly I would stay away from doing barre work at home. Now I'm able to do it all the time."

Blackmon bought her 15-year-old stepdaughter a freestanding Professional Series Ballet Barre from Harlequin early on in quarantine. "I was worried about her injuring herself without one," she admits.

What exactly makes Harlequin's barres an at-home must-have, and hanging on to a chair or countertop so risky? Here are five major differences dancers will notice right away.

December 2020