Four-Way Choreography Exchange

Year: 2024-2025
DanceForce Member: Kim Engel
Artists: TBA
Community Partners: TBA
Audience: 400
Counties: Albany, Dutchess, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady

Dance in the Capital Region is undergoing significant changes. Despite efforts, audiences have been waning and aging for many years. From a presenter perspective, the region is losing one presenting venue due to staffing issues and another is anticipating cutbacks in dance programming for financial and other reasons. The region could be on the cusp of experiencing much less dance performance activity over the next few years and into the future.

On the flip side, there is new strength in the region’s landscape from the educational institutions with dance programs. Fresh talent has been brought to the region in both leadership and teaching roles. Working and performing artists are becoming more a part of the faculty at such institutions. Dance programs are emboldened by success in expanding their programming and collaborating with visiting artists and venues. A palpable energy, effort and enthusiasm is bubbling to the surface in these dance programs and a desire to do, and be, more.

The Four-Way Choreography Exchange project aims to embrace this vitality and is being envisioned as follows:

  • Three to four area colleges/universities with dance programs will participate
  • One artist from each institution will be selected to create new work or set choreography
  • Each choreographer’s work will be bestowed on students at an institution other than their own
  • Students at each participating institution will be involved and will be selected by audition or some other means
  • A videographer will be selected to document the process between each choreographer and group of students
  • A lighting designer will be selected to work with each of the choreographers to illuminate their choreography

One Capital Region venue will be selected to host a performance of all of the works in the project. Short video clips will be interspersed between the choreographic works showing the process behind each work and interviews with those involved.

This project will serve to celebrate the artistic talent in the region by using local choreographers and students at educational institutions. It will enhance the dance performances in the area by adding a new type of presentation to the slate of offerings. It is anticipated, and very desired, that this type of project will help build audience for dance in our local venues and that those new audiences will be heavily slanted towards younger patrons, specifically those of college age, thus helping to defy the current aging out of the region’s dance audience. The project aims to build camaraderie between the institutions – feeding their aspirations, bolstering their current strength and using all of it to the advantage of the region.

While planning is in its early stages, it is expected that the timeline of the project will span from the fall through winter with a potential culmination in February or March. Ultimately, this will be decided by the institutions involved along with the chosen venue.