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panies based inthe city; the restructuring of veterandance groups like TexasBallet Theater andDallasBlackDance Theatre; and the creationof local dance festivals, includingRhythmInFusionFestival (RIFF) andDallas DanceFest (DDF).All of these factors arehelping to transformDallas into a grand destinationfor dance.Keeping this inmind theDanceCouncil ofNorthTexas (DCNT), inpartnershipwiththeCity ofDallasOffice of CulturalAffairs, is planning to delivermore vitality, diversity and excel- lence indancewiththe second annualDDFwhichtakes place September 4-6, 2015 atDallasCity PerformanceHall. This prestigious event features performances onFriday and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m. and concludes Sunday afternoonwiththeDanceCouncilHonors.


The impact of the festival isn’t just felt around theDallas-FortWorth Metroplex but across the regionaswell.Houston-basedMETdance (for- merlyHoustonMetropolitanDanceCompany), a former participant in TheDallasMorningNewsFestival,was disappointedwhenthat festival dis- banded in2004 as ithad looked forward to performing forDallas audi- ences.But artistic directorMarlanaDoyle says, “Wewere grateful to be a part ofDDF last year andhad the thrill of enjoying theDallas audiences and arts community insuchanamazing venue once again.METdance appreciates the efforts of theDallasDanceCouncil and looks forward to celebrating the arts inTexas.”

KimiNikaidoh, artistic director ofBruceWoodDance Projecthere in Dallas, adds, “Giventhe all-consumingnature of running anarts organi- zation, it’s impossible to seewhat all of themany other groups inthe area are accomplishing.DallasDanceFest bringsus all out of our respective “workshops” and givesus the chance to be inspired and challenged by eachother.”

Curated by top dance professionals LaurenAnderson, FredDarsow, Bridget L.Moore andCatherine Turocy,DDF2015will feature 20 excep- tional artists and companies fromall across the regionincluding - Houston,Austin,Oklahoma,Alabama, and theDallas-FortWorth Metroplex.Audiences canexpect eachperformance to be aunique and thrilling display of dance styles including - classical ballet,modern, tap, hip-hop, traditional Indiandance andBallet Folklórico. The programs will also feature performances bywell-knownand belovedDallas insti- tutions suchasDallasBlackDance Theatre andBruceWoodDance Project alongwithsomenewnames including theDallasCowboys Rhythm&BluesDancers.

“Itwas incredible to see sucha tremendous response toDDF2014,” says DCNT PresidentKirtHathaway. “TheDanceCouncilmade the decision to re-implement thiswonderful dance event after ithad sat idle for so many years.Withthe inclusionof theDanceCouncilHonors,DDFhas immediately become one ofDCNT’smarquis events. Producing sucha wonderfulweekend of dancewouldnothave beenpossible if the organ- izationhadnot experienced suchgrowthover the past several years. It truly shows that there is a great commitment by the board and staff to support dance inNorth Texas and beyond. This year promises to be evenmore exciting.“

page 16 Aug-Oct 2015

he perceptionof dance inDallashas changed dramatically over the last five years largely due to the development of theDallas ArtsDistrict; the rise inthenumber of professional dance com-

he second annualDallasDanceFest promisesmore variety and exceptional dancing fromindividuals and groups throughout the region.

Pictured:Booker T.WashingtonHSPVARepertory II. Photo:BrianGuilliaux This year’s participants include:

BalletEnsemble ofTexas (Coppell, TX) – Formed inMay 2001 under the leadership of Lisa Slagle, the company’s goal is to present quality ballet performances for the local communities and to provide advanced ballet studentswith the opportunity to prepare for a career in dance. It is the official company of theBalletAcademy of Texas.

BellHouseArts, Inc. (Owasso,OK) – Founded byRachelBruce Johnson, TheBellHouse is a collaborative dance and art cooperative dedicated to creating opportunity for artistic exchange.At TheBell House,we are interested in the collaboration of ideas, people and movement language that challenge the status quo and conventional ways ofmaking art by elevating art as a process. Its fostersmeeting points for artistic connection between people rather than elevating the art as product in order to activate the transformative nature ofmove- ment that can be experienced both in the practice, performance and witness of dance.

BookerT.WashingtonHighSchool forPerforming andVisual ArtsRepertoryDanceCompany I&II (Dallas, TX) –BTWHSPVA is “the cradle of theDallasArtsDistrict.” In2015, the schoolwas awarded the TexasCommissionontheArtsMedal ofHonor for exem- plary training inArtsEducation. The department’s philosophy is to provide a broad dance educationthat challenges the students artistical- ly, intellectually, and physically and to prepare qualified students for collegiate and professional careers indance and related professions.

BruceWoodDanceProject (Dallas, TX) –BWDPwas launched in 2011 to champion the vision, leadership and artistry of nationally acclaimed Texan dance-makerBruceWood.BWDP picked upwhere the successful FortWorth-basedBruceWoodDanceCompany left off.

DANCE!NORTHTEXAS a publicationof the dance council ofnorthtexas vol 18 •no 3

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