Dance Critics Association Co-Conference Information

The World Dance Alliance – Americas and Dance Critics Association are delighted to announce that we will be integrating our conference programming for the 2013 conference in Vancouver, BC.  All participants that register for either of the conferences are now able to attend all the co-conferences activities at no extra cost!  


Friday, August 2

10:00 am – 11:20 am: Judith R. Marcuse Studio

 “Consider Your Audience: A Pas de Trois: Dancers-Audience-Critics”
Panel: Gigi Berardi, Doug Fullington, and Erin Jorgensen

Join PNB’s Doug Fullington (Education Programs Manager and Assistant to Artistic Director Peter Boal), On the Boards’ Erin Jorgensen (Communications Director), and dance writer Gigi Berardi in an open forum/discussion addressing important roles and niches for administrative and artistic staff and dancers, audiences, and critics — in making and selling dance. Admittedly, the critic’s audience is the reader, and the dancer’s audience is the viewer, and sometimes, reader and viewer are one and the same. The Forum will encourage discussion around provocative questions such as: How much do dance audiences, much less critics, influence marketing and artistic decisions? When and where is there space (literally and figuratively) for the dance critic, the dance feature writer? To what extent do dance writers help create dance persona — why, for example, do writers tend to interview the same dancers over and over? It would seem that here, too, both audiences and critics have their favorite dance personalities. Whither all else, and market be damned?

GIGI BERARDI’s academic background and performing experience allow her to combine her professional interests with her interests in dance, as both critic and writer. She has written over 200 articles for publications including Dance Magazine, Dance International, the Los Angeles Times, the Anchorage Daily News, The Bellingham Herald, IDEA Today, LA Weekly, and scientific journals such as Journal of Dance Medicine & Science, Kinesiology and Medicine for Dance, Dance Research Journal, and Impulse: The International Journal of Dance Science, Education, and Medicine. She has written as a national advocacy columnist for the Dance Critics Association Newsletter and served on performing arts panels for the Alaska State Council on the Arts. She currently serves as a contributing editor and writer for Dance Magazine and writes regularly for Dance International. A professor at Western Washington University, she has written several books, Finding Balance (Routledge), and her current book project, entitled A Cultivated Life.

DOUG FULLINGTON is Education Programs Manager and Assistant to Artistic Director Peter Boal at Pacific Northwest Ballet in Seattle. He is responsible for developing PNB’s audience education programs and is also on the consulting staff of Pacific Northwest Ballet School as dance historian. Doug is a fluent reader of Stepanov notation and has contributed reconstructed dances to The Daughter of Pharaoh for the Bolshoi Ballet (2001); Le jardin animé for PNB School (2004); Le Corsaire for the Bavarian State Ballet (2007); and Giselle for PNB (2011). In 2014, he will collaborate with Alexei Ratmansky on Paquita for the Bavarian State Ballet. Doug’s writings on the Stepanov notations have been published in Ballet Alert!, Ballet Review, Dance View,and Dancing Times. He has also presented several lecture-demonstrations about Stepanov notation on the Guggenheim Museum’s Works and Process series.

ERIN JORGENSEN has worked at On the Boards, an internationally-known presenting house for contemporary dance, theater and music, for over a decade. She currently works in communications, social media, and design, working to find the best ways to connect innovative artists with a sometimes art-shy public. As a Seattle-based musician, she has worked with artists ranging from indie-rockers Built to Spill to sound engineer/maverick Steve Fisk. She studied percussion performance and music composition at Western Washington University in Bellingham, WA.

11:30 am – 12:50 pm: Judith R. Marcuse Studio

“Who Are Dance Critics Today?”
Panel: Carolyn Kelemen, Sandra Kurtz, Mariko Nagashima, and Brian Schaefer
Moderator: George Jackson

Dance criticism today is more diverse than it has ever been. Reviewers for traditional newspaper and magazines are still read in print but today also on screen. Radio and television reviews have always been rare, but many reviews appear primarily on screen, both at organized Internet websites and as independent Internet blogs. Some of the bloggers disavow being critics at all. Pay for Internet reviewing is limited to nonexistent. Why do people do it? The panelists will debate what they believe are the most urgent things a review should accomplish. Are there qualifications for being a dance critic – having taken technique class, having performed and choreographed? Or does being a dancer and dance maker as well as a critic constitute conflict of interest? Can one learn to see dance or is it an inborn gift? Are there different yet valid ways of seeing? How distinct is dance criticism from dance reporting and dance history? Should reviewers remember that future history is being written and carefully distinguish between subjective and objective comments? Why do people read reviews? The panel’s aim is to explore the richness and resonance of dance criticism today.

Becoming aware of criticism at the University of Chicago (“the unexamined pleasure is not worth enjoying”), GEORGE JACKSON began writing on dance for the campus newspaper in 1950. Since then he has reviewed for the general media (Washington Star, Washington Post, Times of London, NPR, PBS) and for specialized sources (Ballet Review, Dance Chronicle, Dance Magazine,, Dancing Times, et al.). He has resided in Austria (where he figure skated as a child), Britain and the USA (where he worked as microbiologist and editor, and took ballet). Recently he started writing novels.

CAROLYN KELEMEN followed James Rouse’s dream to Columbia, Md., in 1970 and soon begin writing about dance for Patuxent Publishing newspapers. Her master’s degree in dance was earned at Mills College in Oakland, Calif. She currently teaches arts and humanities at Howard Community College in Maryland and reviews dance and theater for the online DC Metro Theater Arts. In 1972 she formed the Interfaith Housing Ballet Company and staged one of the New City’s first dance benefits at Merriweather Post Pavilion. In 1999 she won a Howie Award for her support of the arts, and in 2006 she was inducted into the Howard County Women’s Hall of Fame for her efforts on behalf of “A Labor of Love” to a benefit people living with HIV/AIDS in Howard County MD.

MARIKO NAGASHIMA is a dance writer, performer, and teacher based in Seattle. She is the Editorial Director and Manager of the website SeattleDances, the only site dedicated solely to dance in the Seattle area. Her performance credits include lotusbody, Ashani Dances, and ARC Dance, as well as works by Edgar Zendejas and Alex Ketley. She holds a BFA in Ballet and BS in Biology from the University of Utah, where she was also a contributing writer to the Daily Utah Chronicle. Mariko attended the Dance Critics Association conference as a Gary Parks Scholarship winner in 2012, has written for the DCA News, and is currently a member of the DCA Board.

Some people go to Israel to study religion, some go for the politics, BRIAN SCHAEFER went for the dance. He has been living in Tel Aviv for the past three years, covering arts, culture and the LGBT community for TimeOut Israel, Haaretz daily newspaper and contributing as a freelancer to the New York Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, Dance Magazine and OUT magazine. Prior to adventures in the Middle East, he received an NEA Arts Journalism fellowship in Dance Criticism and received degrees in Dance and Communication from the University of California, San Diego. He recently received his Masters in Literature/Creative Writing at Bar Ilan University in Israel and was a finalist for this year’s Livingston Award for Young Journalists in International Reporting. He has been a Board Member of the DCA since 2011.

2:00 pm – 3:20 pm: Judith R. Marcuse Studio

Spotlight on Vancouver”
Panel: Alexander Ferguson, Peter Dickinson, and Deborah Meyers

Moderator: Sarah Todd

Vancouver, BC is an artistic hub of the West coast.  This panel celebrates and examines this artistic vitality through the lens of dance writing in the city. Sarah Todd, curator of Western Front Gallery in Vancouver, moderates this exciting panel about Vancouver as a microcosm of the larger dance world. This discussion will focus on local dance writing and criticism, as well as the impact of social media and fan-based writing on the Vancouver arts scene. Todd and panelists Alexander Ferguson, Peter Dickinson, and Deborah Meyers will discuss the limited resources for peer-reviewed or editor-reviewed local dance critique. Among the questions to be examined are: Who is writing in Vancouver, and why? Who is reading, and why?

PETER DICKINSON is Professor of English at Simon Fraser University, where he also teaches in the School for the Contemporary Arts. He is the author, most recently, of World Stages, Local Audiences: Essays on Performance, Place, and Politics (Manchester University Press, 2010), and he blogs about Vancouver performance at

SARAH TODD is a curator and writer currently based in Vancouver. She went to school at the Ontario College of Art and Design and the University of British Columbia, and has worked at a number of institutions including InterAccess Electronic Media Arts Centre, XPACE Cultural Centre, and The Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery. Sarah has presented independent curatorial projects at the Toronto Free Gallery, The Dance Centre, Vtape Video Resource Centre, The Goethe Institut Satellite and Kunstverein Munchen. She is currently the curator of Media Arts at Western Front and a programmer at Pacific Cinematheque’s Dim Cinema. Sarah contributes regularly to‘s Art + Technology blog and a range of publications including C Magazine and the Dance Current.

3:30 pm – 4:50 pm: Judith R. Marcuse Studio

“The Proof is in the Process”
Panel: Victoria Farr Brown, Zoe Scofield, Annie Wilson
Moderator: Lynn Matluck Brooks

A recent development in contemporary dance practice involves choreographers inviting writers and even audiences to observe their creation process. Writers, in turn, document, blog, and weigh in on the process, which informs both their own reviews and the dance itself. In this panel, three artists/writers involved in such processes describe the ways their work interweaves dancing and writing, focusing on creative process. They investigate ways such work affects the final product’s accessibility and response from both critics and audiences. How does the ground for evaluation shift under such circumstances? How does this writing-dancing, process-based work shape dance presentation? Join Princess Grace award-winning choreographer Zoe Scofield, and dance writers Victoria Farr Brown, Annie Wilson, and moderator Lynn Matluck Brooks in a discussion of these varied and shifting processes.

LYNN MATLUCK BROOKS, the Arthur and Katherine Shadek Humanities Professor at Franklin & Marshall College, founded the college’s Dance Program in 1984. She holds bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees from the University of Wisconsin and Temple University. A Certified Movement Analyst and dance historian, she has held grants from the Fulbright/Hayes Commission, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Brooks has been a performance reviewer for Dance Magazine, editor of Dance Research Journal, and Dance Chronicle, and is the author of many articles and books. A choreographer, researcher, and teacher, her interests include modern dance, historical dance, and social history of dance. In 2007, Brooks received the Bradley R. Dewey Award for Outstanding Scholarship at Franklin & Marshall College. Currently, she is also a writer and editor for the Philadelphia-based project,

VICTORIA FARR BROWN is a writer, mostly of fiction, who lives in Seattle and Martha’s Vineyard. Her loves are dance, philosophy, the Vineyard, travel, food, friends, and family. She writes the “e-whims” blog for Whim W’him Dance Company (directed by Olivier Wever and founded in 2009) in Seattle. WhimW’Him is now affiliated with Intiman Theatre. Victoria’s blogs are about ideas, whimsical or otherwise, that occur to her in the course of watching the company grow.

ZOE SCOFIELD studied ballet and modern dance at Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts in Boston. She has danced with Prometheus Dance and Bill James among other choreographers in Toronto, Boston and Seattle.  Scofield has received the Mariam McGlone Emerging Choreographer Award from Wesleyan University, Artist Trusts GAP Grant and Artist Fellowship Award, City Arts Innovator Award, Seattle Magazine’s Spotlight Award, The Strangers Genius Award short list, Alpert Award Residency and the Princess Grace Foundation Choreography Award. As collaborators in the Seattle-based company Zoe/Juniper, Scofield and Juniper Shuey have shown their work at Howard House, SOFA Gallery, Soil Gallery, TBA Festival and the Tacoma Art Museum.

ANNIE WILSON is a Philadelphia-based performer, creator, author, yoga instructor, bartender, and maybe, one day, a BodyTalk practitioner. She is a graduate of the Process Project (Bethany Merola’s improve-film-story project). In 2010 she traveled to Amsterdam to study improvisation with Katie Duck, and was supported in part by the PA Council on the Arts, friends, colleagues, and mentors. The blog from that experience can be found at She often tries to insert intellectual discourse where it doesn’t belong and looks forward to a project that focuses on it.

Saturday, August 3

10:00 am- 12:50 pm: Stephen A. Jarislowsky Studio

Shifting Strategies: Dance Writing for the Web vs. Print”
Presentation & Class

Starting with a basic intro to dance writing, this panel will discuss how writing for the web affects writing style. How does it differ from traditional journalism? Is it possible to write a review in 140 characters? Join the DCA in this forum/class that will discuss how to capitalize on the better parts of our constantly changing media landscape. With time to practice your own writing skills, this panel is sure to hone your approach to writing about dance.

2:00 pm – 3:20 pm: Stephen A. Jarislowsky Studio

“The DCA and Higher Education”
Panel: Lodi McClellan, Jennifer Salk, and Henry Daniel

Moderator: Mariko Nagashima

College is the perfect time to train aspiring artists to look at dance critically, as the critical thinking process has applications in  practicing, performing, watching, creating, and writing about dance. Because dancers are able to internalize the physicality of choreography when they witness it, they are able to write about dance from a unique place of understanding. Getting them to write about it, however, can be challenging. When pitted against academic studies of dance technique and choreographic composition, writing well-crafted dance criticism is not always a student’s top priority. This higher education panel discussion aims to address this issue and to answer questions such as: How are universities encouraging young dancers to become young writers?  Is there room for the DCA to become a presence in educating dance critics through college programs? And how can this process be facilitated? Join the DCA and educators from a range of universities for a forum about dance writing and its visibility in higher education. Faculty members from the University of Washington, Cornish College of the Arts, and Simon Fraser University will be featured on this panel.

HENRY DANIEL began his career in Trinidad as an actor with Derek Walcott’s Trinidad Theatre Workshop and Astor Johnson’s Repertory Dance Theatre of Trinidad and Tobago. In the USA he was a member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Centre Workshop, the Bernhard Ballet, and soloist with the José Limón Dance Company of New York, among others. In Germany he founded and directed Henry Daniel and Dancers while continuing to work as a member of Tanzproject München, Tanztheater Freiburg, and Assistant Director, Choreographer, and Dancer for Tanztheater Münster. In the UK he founded and directed the performance group Full Performing Bodies. Henry attended the Boston Conservatory of Music and the Juilliard School in the USA, and has an MA in Dance Studies from City University, The Laban Centre, London, as well as a Ph.D. in Dance, Performance Studies and New Technology from Bristol University’s Department of Drama: Theatre, Film, Television. He is currently Professor of Dance and Performance Studies at SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts and Principal Investigator for Project Barca, a SSHRC funded Research/Creation initiative (2011-2014).

MARIKO NAGASHIMA is a dance writer, performer, and teacher based in Seattle. She is the Editorial Director and Manager of the website SeattleDances, the only site dedicated solely to dance in the Seattle area. Her performance credits include lotusbody, Ashani Dances, and ARC Dance, as well as works by Edgar Zendejas and Alex Ketley. She holds a BFA in Ballet and BS in Biology from the University of Utah, where she was also a contributing writer to the Daily Utah Chronicle. Mariko attended the Dance Critics Association conference as a Gary Parks Scholarship winner in 2012, has written for the DCA News, and is currently a member of the DCA Board.

LODI McCLELLAN, Professor at Cornish College of the Arts, has been teaching dance technique for over thirty years in colleges and private studios on both coasts.  In addition, she has taught Dance History and Criticism to Pacific Northwest Ballet summer students and was an Artist-in-Residence at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, choreographing on and teaching modern dance to engineers.  Lodi’s performance credits include the University of Washington’s Chamber Dance Company, the Mark Morris Dance Group, Beth Soll and Company, Bill Evans, Llory Wilson, Wade Madsen, and Georgia Ragsdale, among others.  Her dance writing credits include the Seattle Weekly, Eastside Week, Dance International, The International Dictionary of Modern Dance, Curve, and DanceNet , which she also co-edited, and many pre-performance lectures for a variety of venues.  She received her BA in Dance from Mount Holyoke College and her MFA in Dance, specializing in dance criticism, from the University of Washington.

JENNIFER SALK, MFA, is an associate professor and the Donald R. Petersen Endowed Professor at the University of Washington in Seattle. She has taught master classes and choreographed  for companies and schools around the country, Europe, and South America, and is on faculty at  Florida Dance Festival and Staibdance Italian Summer Dance Intensive. She is currently touring   with Mark Haim. Her DVD How to Teach Experiential Anatomy in the Technique Class is in its second printing.  Salk recently returned from a Fulbright sponsored residency at Mimar Sinan University State Conservatory in Istanbul. She received the Distinguished Teaching Award at UW in 2006. Salk employs embodied writing skills in all of her course work in an effort to nurture the next generation of dance writers.

3:30 pm – 4:50 pm: Studio 7

 “What’s In a Name?  ‘Branding’ in the Dance World”
Panel: Tonya Lockyer, Ashani Mfuko, and Max Wyman

Moderator: Sandra Kurtz

How does a dance company establish its identity in a world that is increasingly dependent on social media?  And how does that identity change over time?  This panel will examine that process from the point of view of both artists and critics.  Moderated by Sandra Kurtz, (Seattle Weekly), panelists will include Max Wyman (Vancouver critic and cultural commentator) Tonya Lockyer (Executive Director, Velocity Dance Center, Seattle) and Ashani Mfuko, (“Dancerpreneur” and online branding specialist (@AshaniMfuko), with other participants to be announced.

SANDRA KURTZ has been watching dance and writing about it, in Seattle and elsewhere, since the 1970s.  She has taught on the dance faculties of the University of Washington and Cornish College, helped to found the Northwest Dance Coalition, and served on the boards of the Dance Critics Association and the Society of Dance History Scholars.

TONYA LOCKYER has served as Executive/Artistic Director of Velocity since 2011, leading the revitalization of Seattle’s premier contemporary dance center. Lockyer has overseen the artistic expansion of Velocity including: the development of Velocity’s first humanities programs, initiating an Artist-in-Residence program and Next Dance Cinema festival, launching an online journal for choreographic culture, commissioning and developing more than forty new performance works, installation and film; and the curation of over a hundred contemporary performances by established and emerging artists including zoe | juniper, Keith Hennessy, and Faye Driscoll. Lockyer participates on numerous state and local arts panels and is a sought out speaker on contemporary dance and cultural vitality. An Affiliated Faculty Member of Cornish College of the Arts, Lockyer is published in international journals and exhibition catalogues.. She holds an MFA from The University of Washington and is a Certified Movement Analyst.

ASHANI MFUKO is a Professional Dancer/Dance Instructor, Social Media Marketing Strategist, Online Branding Specialist, Business Coach, Writer, and Executive Producer. She is the Founder of Kiner Enterprises, a dance marketing, branding, & media company, and the Host and Executive Producer of the “Inside New York City Dance” television show on MNN. She has been featured in Dance Mogul magazine, Inside Woman magazine, & Dance Studio Life magazine, as well as various dance blogs online. She is the author & creator of the, “Finance Your Dance: How To Turn Your Passion Into Profit“ e-book & workshop, and her dance blog won the Reader’s Choice, “Top Dance Business Blog” of the year award, two years in a row. Ashani is currently on staff at the Joffrey Ballet School in New York city, & teaches Advanced Jazz classes for their Jazz & Contemporary program & Ballet trainee program. She also consults as their Social Media Marketing Strategist & Manager.

MAX WYMAN is a Vancouver writer and one of Canada’s leading cultural commentators. Among his books are Dance Canada: An Illustrated History (named one of the “165 Great Canadian Books of the Century” in 2000); Evelyn Hart: An Intimate Biography; Revealing Dance (a selection from three decades of writing about dance);  and The Defiant Imagination: Why Culture Matters, a passionate manifesto asserting the central importance of the arts and culture to modern society. A former member of the board of the Canada Council for the Arts, he was President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, 2002-2006. Deeply involved in the international movement to reposition the arts at the heart of the educational curriculum, he serves on  the steering committee of the International Network for Research in Arts Education (INRAE) and co-edited the first INRAE international yearbook (2013). For his services to the arts he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2001 and received an honorary D. Litt. from Simon Fraser University in 2003.