Welcome

By Wayne Hazzard

May 16, 2019, PUBLISHED BY IN DANCE

I have hope. I worry. I have hope. I worry. I have hope.

Does this cycle resonate? With desires to create, to manifest dreams, comes a simultaneous action to worry. I worry about the “what ifs”— that may or may not need to be worried about, yet. Does this imagining of less than optimistic scenarios — will I have enough money to pay everyone? will anyone come see the performance? — serve as a hope of preventing them from happening? If I imagine the worst, then the worst can’t happen—right?

If, like me, you might be seeking a bit of solace and inspiration, I recommend diving into each of this month’s articles. Be subversive and start with the last piece on page 12. Poet and educator Aries Jordan sheds more light on the pervasiveness of body shaming and the call for Fat Liberation. Jordan writes that, “the dance world is historically known for its harsh norms of body shaming and rigid standards for ‘acceptable dancing bodies.’” Jordan’s article includes the inspiring voices of co-artistic directors of Big Moves Dance Company, Matilda St. John and Jessica Judd.

Bodies in motion are often described as animalistic. In June, Sonsheree Giles and Sebastian Grubb seek to expand concepts of gendered dancing and have titled their new work, Fabric Animal. In an interview with choreographer Nancy Karp, Giles and Grubb reveal ways they work together that “takes the individual outside a human cultured context and more into having a body-through-time, and being woven through time to a history of a species, history of our families, history of our own lives, and how the of weaving of those things comes to the present moment, which for us is this show.”

Beasts abound amongs us, metaphorical and real. Damara Ganley, a longtime colleague and collaborator with Melecio Estrella and Andrew Ward—who work under the banner of Fog Beast—has interviewed Beast collaborators to “gain insights and glimpses into the making of their new work, The Big Reveal, a performance-as conference-as ritual, to be held at the Asian Art Museum in mid July.” Estrella reveals the group’s interest in investigating lineage “so much of the way we live and think is inherited from who and what came before.” Dance meet Darwin.

Growing up I was obsessed with twins and triplets and quintuplets, you get the idea. So I was thrilled when Sima Belmar expressed an interest to write about twin sisters Molly and Aviva Rose-Williams. Belmar’s in-depth conversation with the sisters deeply satisfied my ongoing curiosity of twin similarities. That the twin sisters create work that is based in circus arts brought back teenage fantasies of performing in a ‘circus.’ Do we all have these?

Life can change in a moment. And when it does a new journey begins. Healing is often the first part of this journey. We’re eager to share Juan Manuel Aldape Muñoz’s story that lays bare what it’s like to survive falling three stories. When this happened he was “evacuated out of Mexico and spent four months bed-bound to recover from complex fractures sustained on the right-side leg, hip, and elbow—all of which required major reconstruction surgeries.” Muñoz’s self described near-death experience has “left me with new disabilities and sensibilities.”

In Dance continues as a forum to showcase an array of voices, providing ways to understand and reveal animalistic desires. Thank you so much to the past, present and future chroniclers and makers.

I have hope.

 

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


Wayne Hazzard, Executive Director Wayne 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; and he was acknowledged as a 2015 Gerbode Professional Development Fellow. Before his manifold career in arts management, Hazzard had a distinguished 20-year career performing with many notable choreographers and companies including the Joe Goode Performance Group, Margaret Jenkins Dance Co, Ed Mock & Co, June Watanabe, Emily Keeler, Aaron Osborne and more. Coinciding with his life as a dancer, Hazzard has and continues to work as an advocate for dance. For his unique artistic vision, Hazzard has received numerous awards, including an Isadora Duncan Award for his innovation, dedication, and contribution to the field of dance. And a Sangam Arts 2018 Mosaic America Impact Award. Hazzard has served as an advisor and panelist with such organizations as the Center for Cultural Innovation, DanceUSA, National Endowment for the Arts, California Arts Council, San Francisco Arts Commission, City of San José Office of Cultural Affairs, and Dance Advance in Philadelphia. He was recently appointed to serve on the Funding Advisory Committee for the City of Oakland.

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