Hannah Varga at Djerassi preview
(Photo by Bari Lee)
The Women Ballet Choreographers Residency at Djerassi
"Where are all the women choreographers?"
...asks Dance Magazine, as well as numerous other news and arts publications, dance companies and schools. Among choreographers in the ballet world, women are a minority group.
Kathryn Roszak's Danse Lumière has presented a first step in addressing this, by developing the Women Ballet Choreographers Residency. The inaugural Residency was held at the Djerassi Resident Artists Program on May 15, 2016. During this successful event women choreographers screened their works and presented ballets in open rehearsal.
Participants included choreographers Julia Adam; Dalia Rawson, Executive Director of The New Ballet School and The New Ballet School Studio Company; Lissa Resnick, from No Strings Attached; Amy Seiwert, Artistic Director of Imagery; and Priya Shah from AileyCamp.
Collaborating artists and designers joined the above choreographers for a panel discussion. Panel participants inculded Katja Björner, formerly of Royal Swedish Ballet and star of "The Dancer"; Greta Schoenberg, Founder and Director of Programming for the San Francisco Dance Film Festival; film producer Kate Duhamel; visual artist Deborah O'Grady; and choreographer Myles Thatcher. There was also a video by Naomie Kremer.
Two dance companies and directors who present and promote works by women were recognized and honored. Mr. Thatcher, as ally ("I'm a feminist, and everyone should be"), made the presentations to Celia Fushille, Artistic Director of Smuin Ballet; and Lauren Jonas, Artistic Director of Diablo Ballet.
A residency preview took place at Djerassi in September 2015, with choreographers Rawson, Resnick, and Roszak. Following class with Ms. Rawson, dances were created in a beautiful dance studio and in the surrounding landscape at Woodside, CA. There was also a special fundraiser preview held in May, one week before the inaugural event.
Kathryn Roszak says, "This residency program highlights contemporary ballets by women. We plan to help women artists to further develop their choreography while giving them greater opportunity and visibility."
Related articles following the inaugural Residency:
Moving Forward: Women Ballet Choreographers - by Kathryn Roszak at Dancers' Group.
Women Choreographers Soar at Djerassi Resident Artists Program - by Kathryn Roszak at Theatre Bay Area.
Who Gets to Have a Voice? - an interview with Kathryn Roszak by Emmaly Wiederholt at Stance on Dance.
Ballet Geek, 15 May 2016 - a review of the inaugural Residency by attendee Carrie Gaiser Casey.
In Ballet, Women Rise by Stepping Out of Line - Story Exchange article includes our Residency honoree Celia Fushille.
Moving Forward - Future Residency Events:
The next Women Ballet Choreographers Residency will take place on May 6th & 7th, 2017 at the Djerassi Resident Artists Program. Please watch this space for further details.
Also, Kathryn Roszak's Danse Lumière is pleased to announce that Moving Forward: Women Ballet Choreographers East and West will take place at the 92nd Street Y in New York City on April 28, 2017.
Please consider a Donation:
You can help cover the costs of these important events and ensure their success by donating to Danse Lumière.
Donate any amount by check, payable to "Poetry Flash/Danse Lumière".
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- Thank You -
More images from the Djerassi preview, September 2015:
Hannah Varga, Keryn Breiterman-Loader and Shanise Dews at Djerassi preview, September 2015
(Photo by Bari Lee; "Ouroborus" sculpture by Sebastian Mendes, 2005)
Brennan Wall, The Studio Company (Photo by Bari Lee; "Faeries" sculpture by Derek Jackson, 2002)
Kathryn Roszak observes rehearsal at the Djerassi preview, September 2015 (Photo by Bari Lee)
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