Welcome

By Wayne Hazzard

April 15, 2019, PUBLISHED BY IN DANCE

Sharing is powerful.

And the wonderful part is that sharing comes naturally—like when a child eagerly shoves their ice cream cone towards your mouth, or when a stranger smiles to comfort because you’re pushed aside by someone needing the last seat on the bus. The forever lovely sharing of warm-smiles can quickly shift to more complex shares. Especially conversations that question the ways we think about the moving body.

Sharing is how we come together to participate in dance class. Sure, there’s a teacher, and yet the gift of the 90 minutes, or so, together is that everyone in class is finding ways to engage bone and muscle that aligns in a specific aesthetic that is primal and guided by numerous histories. Sharing allows us to learn.

I am often on the search for ways to illuminate my ideas – yes, sharing has an agenda. These ideas run the gamut. A basic share for me takes the form of a meal and conversation. This connection through the act of nourishing our bodies harkens to the very beginnings of society.

If an artist is interested in being considered for a grant or some other form of support – like a residency – they must articulate a vision of what they are creating. This sharing must come across as realistic and aspirational, grounded in thoughts of why, where, and how they will make this future-public presentation a reality. They must fully share their most precious ideas. Or do they? A cherished reference to one person can be incoherent and unattainable to another person. A common hope is that talking about dances not yet made should be something natural and so much a part of everyday experience that its intimacy becomes matter of fact.

What makes sharing easy for some artists and challenging for other artists? Already I’ve implied a judgement in the notion that to not share – bare your soul – means that you might not be worthy of support. Sharing is risky.

Ultimately my share here goes to the crux of what sharing is about – to feel equal in the equation of the share, to trust who you are sharing with, and that what is stated will be taken as it’s intended—meaning someone will understand what you are sharing no matter how it’s stated.

Now we are at the place of sharing where thoughts shatter into millions of different ways to think about this concept—the ability to speak the same language in a share. If someone doesn’t understand our share/language/moment, is this the only time to state what we believe? To state our vision? Probably. And this means that sharing can come at a cost – a simple example is the smile that goes unanswered. And the more complex example is the grant proposal that’s rejected. And if rejected, does this mean the risk was not worth it? Do you not share anymore? These are the chances each artist takes at every step of creation.

Sharing is powerful. And within these pages we are eager to share a bevy of opportunities to engage with workshops, performances, and ideas that will assuredly inform your own sharing. My hope is that you discover something that engages and compels.

Step forward and dare to share.

 

This article appeared in the May 2019 issue of In Dance.


Wayne Hazzard is a native Californian and as a co-founder is proud to continue his work with the Bay Area dance community as the executive director of Dancers’ Group. Hazzard is a leader in the service field who is known for his work with fiscal sponsorship and on new program development. Hazzard had a distinguished 20-year career performing the works of many notable choreographers including Ed Mock, June Watanabe, Emily Keeler, Aaron Osborne, Joe Goode and Margaret Jenkins. Coinciding with his life as a dancer, Hazzard has and continues to work as an advocate for dance.

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