Author: jessilliams

Grant writer by day and dancepreneur by night.

EVERYTHING IS GROUNDED IN MY SUBJECTVITY: Ali Rosa-Salas

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In this episode of Pod de Deux, Clara and Jessica interviewed performance curator, Ali Rosa-Salas, who serves as the Director of Performance Programs at Abrons Arts Center.  We spoke about the many roles of a performance curator and how Ali approaches her work at Abrons as she strives to create a place for inquiry and community.  In the process, we learned about the history of Henry Street Settlement and its founder, Lillian Wald. Clara joined Ali and Jessica via skype from Minnesota where she was visiting her family for Thanksgiving.

Ali oversees the curation of Abrons Arts Center’s performance season with Artistic Director Craig Peterson and manages artist relations. As an independent curator, she has produced visual art exhibitions, performances, and public programs at Danspace Project’s Food For Thought Series, AFROPUNK AFTER DARK 2015, Knockdown Center, MoCADA, MINKA Brooklyn, Weeksville Heritage Center, and more. She has also organized discursive events as an Alumnae Fellow at the Barnard Center for Research on Women, with Movement Research as part of their Studies Project platform, and the DISCOURSE series as the Associate Curator of the 2017 American Realness Festival. Ali was co-founder of the curatorial platform MAMI (2016-2017), which produced a music compilation, an exhibition, performances, and nightlife with NON WORLDWIDE, Fake Accent, BUFU, BBZ London, GET ARTISTS PAID, and over 150 DJs, artists, collectives, and activists. She graduated from Barnard with a B.A. in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and interdisciplinary concentrations in Dance and Race/Ethnic Studies.  She is currently an M.A. candidate at the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance at Wesleyan University. 

Check out the array of forthcoming performances on Abron’s Arts Center’s website!

This episode was recorded at Btoven Music studio.

WE’RE THERE TO CELEBRATE: Ben Oddo and Michael Mahany of Dance Network

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In this episode we spoke to Ben Oddo, Content Manager of Dance Network as well as Michael Mahany, NYC Dance Network Correspondent. We learned how co-founders, Julie Stadler and David Medeiros, formed Dance Network. Michael shared his favorite moments as a correspondent and journalist of dance in New York City, as well as his passion for dance, wine, and cooking.  Ben and Michael spoke about the network’s growing dance content and future plans for the platform.

We are also so excited to announce our new partnership with Dance Network which will be launched with the release of this episode!  Pod de Deux will now be featured on Dance Network along with their family of programs.

Dance Network is the first-ever, over-the-top, digital network dedicated to showcasing all styles and genres of dance. Dance Network’s goal is to help dance lovers celebrate together. Featuring over 400 hours of original and licensed video content, live event coverage, revealing blogs, and The Barretender, an in-house podcast featuring in-depth interviews with leaders in the world of dance, Dance Network is becoming the premier outlet for dance entertainment, lifestyle, education and inspiration.

Dance Network offers viewers across the globe access to its content for $6.99 a month. This includes original shows, dance competitions, feature films, documentaries, video instructional, blogs, news, podcasts, and live streaming all at your fingertips.
This episode was recorded at Btoven Studio in Manhattan.

REACH FARTHER: Fran Kirmser

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In this episode, we interview Fran Kirmser, co-author of the new book, A Life in Dance: A Practical Guide. Fran revealed how a class assignment turned into a quest with Rebecca Stenn to create a resource book for dancers. Fran read from the book and shared some stories from contributing artists.  Throughout our conversation, we talked about the various strengths and skills dancers possess that they can rely on to make their own life in dance and beyond.  Look for the book on Amazon and www.alifeindance.com (more…)

Sarah Benvenuti

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Jessica and Sarah Benvenuti, founder of Benvenuti Arts, met up for a friendly chat and drink on a rooftop bar in New York City.  Sarah shared her seasoned approach to fundraising for small arts organizations and artists while sharing helpful tips for artists interested in increasing their fundraising impact.  They talked about practical fundraising strategies, donor and audience engagement, the case for support, grant writing, crowdfunding, fiscal sponsorship, and more.  Artists, this is not an episode to miss! (more…)

Jennifer Tipton

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Jessica had the pleasure of interviewing lighting designer Jennifer Tipton, who was recently nominated for a Tony award for her work on A Doll’s House Part 2 (on Broadway through July 23rd).  Jessica and Jennifer chatted over coffee about many aspects of her process starting with her approach to collaboration with directors and choregraphers, to how she gets inspiration, key differences in lighting dance and theater, as well as trends in lighting, and tricks of the trade. (more…)

DANCE ON CAMERA FESTIVAL, 2017!

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Marie’s Attitude by Kristi Grunditz

Jessica and Clara returned to the Dance on Camera Festival this year. We were on-site on Saturday, February 4th, interviewing interns, filmmakers, dancers and audience members about a range of films including documentary, narrative and choreography.  Here’s a quick breakdown of the topics you’ll hear covered in this episode, as well as an extended version with information about each segment after the “Read More” tag:

Minute 0-5:40 – Into Sunlight (feature)

5:40-15:54 – Jonah (short)

15:54-39:53 – Marie’s Attitude (feature) and Broken Memories (short)

39:53-54:14 – VR (Virtual Reality) Projects

54:14-End – Shorts Program (various short films) (more…)

Bonus episode: Barak Heymann, Producer of Mr. Gaga

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Jessica caught Tomer and Barak Heymann (the Producer and Film Director duo of Heymann Brothers Films) after a Q&A at Film Society of Lincoln Center while promoting the release of Mr. Gaga, their acclaimed documentary film about Ohad Naharin.  Naharin is is the long-standing Artistic Director of Batsheva Dance Company and subject of the film which follows his life from childhood until the present.  Jessica interviewed Barak and learned more about the filmmaking process, where the idea for the film came about, how Tomer selected archival footage, and how Ohad reacted to seeing the film for the first time.

Do not miss this film! It is screening at Film Forum and Lincoln Center through February 16th.   Learn more about Mr. Gaga at http://www.mrgagathefilm.com/.  And learn more about Tomer and Barak’s films at http://heymannfilms.com/.