How much should you personalize the audition material, imbue it with a sense of who you are, express? After all, isn’t that exactly what art asks of artists?
My recent book, Shifting Cultural Power: Questions and Case Studies in Performance, imagines equity-based models in dance that decenter whiteness.
Getting commissioned to create a brand-new piece sounds like a dream to most freelance choreographers. You get to work with talented dancers, in studio space you don’t have to reserve yourself, sometimes with carte blanche regarding choreographic themes, music and even cast size. But, at least in concert dance, these gigs typically operate on a […]
An artistic residency sounds like a dream: You get concentrated time and space to work on your choreography, often with artists of other disciplines to serve as collaborators or encourage new modes of thinking, usually within an idyllic and distraction-free setting. It’s no surprise, then, that the application process can be competitive and daunting. Do […]
Like most children, Billy Bell tried a bit of everything. Sports, martial arts, academics, dance classes and video games all mixed together into one happy, busy, West Palm Beach upbringing. But when it came to picking which interest to follow into adulthood, he felt he had to choose between two worlds. Through the door on […]
There’s something about Sean Bankhead‘s choreography that moves you to your feet. Through intricate footwork, a twerk moment or a groove typical to Atlanta dance styles, he makes the lyrics, the melody and every instrument playing come alive. “He wants you to feel the music exactly how he hears it in his head,” says JaQuel […]
Lately I’ve been having recurring dreams: I’m in an audition and I can’t remember the combination. Or, I’m rehearsing for an upcoming show, onstage, and I don’t know what comes next. Each time I wake up relieved that it was only a dream. However, this is the reality of how I often felt throughout my […]
Nine years ago, Del Mak decided he was done performing for artists like Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and One Direction. “I’d done everything I wanted to, and I was tired of the rat race,” he says. “My body was starting to hurt.” The next obvious step? Choreography. Though “obvious” doesn’t mean “easy.” For commercial dancers looking […]