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Leading a new era of international cultural exchange by exporting
American creativity and crafting global relationships.
July 2021

ADA Featured in U.S. Department of State Article

American Dance Abroad is thrilled to be working with the U.S. Department of State on its Virtual American Dance Academy project. "This project has been an unusual and exciting international model that successfully overcame COVID-19 to bring the best of American street dance to talented students in N. Macedonia.  We were delighted to work with the Arts Envoy team, the U.S. Embassy in Skopje, and especially Ivana Balabanova, who envisioned the project and worked on the ground to make it come alive,” said ADA Co-Directors Carolelinda Dickey and Andrea Snyder.

The full article from the Department of State can be seen below or by clicking here.

Entertainment Industry Professionals Lead Virtual Dance Academy in North Macedonia

In North Macedonia, local dancers and dance clubs are getting ready to “graduate” from the Virtual American Dance Academy (VADA), enthusiastically working on their dance hall techniques with King Kayak, aka Wendell Bullen, a renowned New York City-based dancer, artist, choreographer, and entrepreneur originally from the West Indies. VADA is not a formal dance school, it is rather a virtual project of ECA’s Arts Envoy program, in the Cultural Programs Division of the Office of Professional and Cultural Exchanges. By bringing the best of American street dance styles along with lessons and discussions on the business of dance, from starting a dance studio to dancing professionally, this unique online ECA exchange program is forging stronger U.S.-Macedonian ties and providing tools and know how to help young people build the creative industries in North Macedonia.

The program is the result of collaboration between the U.S. Embassy in Skopje and local dancer and teacher Ivana Balabanova from the Beatrix Cultural Center, who saw an opportunity to inspire Macedonian youth by engaging them in what they loved – American street dance and hip hop – with an emphasis on how to turn a talent for dance into a business. The Arts Envoy program provided the vehicle for this effort, using virtual platforms to cost-effectively bring multiple U.S. dance artists and instructors to North Macedonia for workshops on dance, culture, the history of hip hop, and arts entrepreneurship. From February to June 2021, under the leadership of American Dance Abroad Co-Directors Carolelinda Dickey and Andrea Snyder, the program brought to North Macedonia weekly workshops in popping, hip hop musicality and improv, house dance, waving, and dance hall, from outstanding artists such as Marie Poppins, SlimBoogie, Jesse Sykes, and Nubian Néné.

An important goal for U.S. Embassy Skopje is to help North Macedonia build a strong and diversified economy and become increasingly self-reliant. One way to support that objective was to provide creative opportunities to young people to minimize economic migration and the brain drain from which the country suffers. That is the heart of the Virtual American Dance Academy: building capacity through dance and promoting the growth of a successful arts industry. In addition to workshops on dance technique, the program was also designed to transfer knowledge and knowhow on the business and entrepreneurship of dance. In April, a three-week lecture symposium brought participants together with artists such as Ephrat Asherie and Princeton University professor and choreographer-in-residence Raphael Xavier, who spoke to the local participants about individual professional development and project development. Artist Staycee Pearl lectured on the mechanics of building a school, and Ken Foster and Thomas Cavanagh focused on institutional management. In addition to the business of dance, VADA also covered the history and culture of American street dance and hip hop, providing the critical background of the dance styles the world loves and reflecting the ideals of a diverse, democratic, and inclusive society.

The Virtual American Dance Academy will conclude on June 29 with a virtual panel discussion of dance experts. Representing a broad spectrum of the American dance community, the experts will inspire the students with personal success stories of creating new artistic and business ventures along with examples of community engagement.

Awards and Special Recognitions

Recognizing awards and special recognitions received by American artists both at home and abroad.
Click here to submit an award for inclusion
2021 McKnight Choreographer and Dancer Fellows Named
McKnight Artist Fellowships deliver significant financial assistance to mid-career individuals whose work demonstrates artistic excellence. As a result, three Choreographer Fellows and three Dancer Fellows will individually receive $25,000 to set aside time for study, reflection, experimentation, exploration, to take advantage of an opportunity or work on a new project. 

2021 Choreographer Fellows
 In addition to the $25,000 fellowship award, each Choreographer Fellow is eligible to apply for additional support for research and development of their work through a new program. The opportunity offers a supported trip to New York City during the APAP conference, as well as funds for renting dance space and/or engaging collaborators or staff in the creative process.

photo by V. Paul Virtucio
Ananya Chatterjea

Ananya Chatterjea’s work as choreographer, dancer, and thinker brings together Contemporary Dance, social justice choreography, and a commitment to healing justice. She is the artistic director of Ananya Dance Theatre, a Twin Cities-based professional dance company of BIPOC women, womxn & femme artists, and co-founder of the Shawngrām Institute for Performance and Social Justice.

photo by Bobby Rogers
Alanna Morris-Van Tassel

Alanna Morris-Van Tassel is a Brooklyn native and Saint Paul-based artist excavating cultural retention and fragmentation within their Caribbean diasporic identity. Morris-Van Tassel was a performer with TU Dance from 2007-2017, featured in works by Kyle Abraham, Gioconda Barbuto, Camille A. Brown, Ronald K. Brown, Greggory Dolbashian, Katrin Hall, Francesca Harper, Dwight Rhoden, and Uri Sands. In 2020 she served as the company's Artistic Associate and is a founding Teaching Artist at The School at TU Dance Center.

photo by Bill Cameron
Darrius Strong

Darrius Strong is a Twin Cities-based choreographer, dancer, and educator whose creative work has been chosen for the Walker Art Centers, Choreographers’ Evening, and Rhythmically Speaking. He was featured in the 2015 New Griots Festival and an American Standard Bill Board advertisement in New York City’s Time Square in 2016. He was also a 2017 Momentum New Works recipient. Strong has created works for Threads Dance Project, Flying Foot Forum, Alternative Motion Projects, TU Dance, and James Sewell Ballet. Strong is a grateful recipient of a 2019 Jerome Hill Fellowship.
2021 Dancer Fellows
In addition to the $25,000 fellowship award, the Fellowship Program will also provide funds for each Dancer Fellow to commission a choreographer of their choice to create a new solo dance work specifically for them.

photo by Isabel Fajardo
Alexandra Eady

Alexandra Eady was born and raised in Minneapolis and began dancing at the age of seven. While in high school at St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists, she was introduced to the contemporary dance technique of Yorchhā created by Ananya Chatterjea, the Artistic Director of Ananya Dance Theatre. In 2011, she became a company member with Ananya Dance Theatre and continues to perform, teach and tour with the company. Ananya Dance Theatre’s commitment to social justice and intentional choreographic creations is what fuels her performance on stage.

photo by Nir Arieli
Hassan Ingraham

Hassan Ingraham, born and raised in Miami, FL, first discovered dance while attending Charles R. Drew Middle School. He continued his dance training at the New World School of the Arts and then received his Bachelor of Fine Arts at The Juilliard School in New York City. Hassan has worked with various prominent artists from the likes of Alexander Ekman, Christopher Huggins, Darrell Grand Moultrie, Dwight Rhoden, among many others. He has been a guest artist with Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Theater, Urban Spectrum Theater Company, and Peter London Global Dance Company. He was a dance specialist at the Promise Academy at the Harlem Children’s Zone and a faculty member at the Harlem School of the Arts. In 2011, Hassan moved to Minnesota to join TU Dance, where he danced with the company for 5 years. He also has been teaching ballet, modern, and jazz techniques for over 15 years.

David Stalter Jr.

David Stalter Jr., born and raised in Minnesota. He started dancing in 2012, the summer after freshman year of high school, dancing as an outlet to express himself. He’s self-taught, teaching himself all sorts of styles like Hip Hop Freestyle, Animation, Breaking, House, and many more. He’s danced with the 612 Timberwolves crew, where he’s danced with G-Eazy, Lil Jon, and Skee-Lo he’s currently been dancing for 7-8 years.

Dormeshia Wins Jacob's Pillow Dance Award

Jacob's Pillow announced Dormeshia as the recipient of the 2021 Jacob's Pillow Dance Award. The Award, presented each year to an artist of exceptional vision and achievement, carries a cash prize of $25,000 which the artist can use in any way they wish. Dormeshia is a dynamic tap dancer, choreographer, and instructor who has been lauded as the best of her generation, both by her peers and esteemed dance critics. Her performances have appeared on the Broadway stage, in films, and in choreography for artists including Savion Glover and Gregory Hines.
Helen Simoneau is recipient of a National Endowment of the Arts grant and a Guggenheim Fellowship
Helen Simoneau, founder and artistic director of Helen Simoneau Danse, has been awarded a $15,000 Arts Projects Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and a Guggenheim Fellowship.  

The NEA grant will support a new choreographic work, “Delicate Power.” It is among the more than 1,100 projects across America totaling nearly $27 million that were funded during this second round of Grants for Arts Projects for fiscal year 2021.

For the Guggenheim Fellowship, Simoneau was chosen from nearly 3,000 candidates through a rigorous peer-review process. She is among a diverse group of 184 artists, writers, scholars, and scientists in this year's fellowship class. Created in 1925 by Senator Simon and Olga Guggenheim in memory of their son John Simon Guggenheim, the Foundation has offered fellowships to exceptional individuals in pursuit of scholarship in any field of knowledge and creation in any art form, under the freest possible conditions.

Her work has been presented nationally and internationally at The Guggenheim Museum and Joyce SoHoin New York City;  Dance Place in Washington, D.C; Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out in Massachusetts; Tangente in Montréal; the Aoyama Round Theatre in Tokyo; the L.I.G. Art Hall Busan in South Korea;  PACT-Zollverein in Essen, Germany;  Athens International Dance Festival in Greece;  and the Shanghai Dance Festival in  China. Simoneau was awarded first place for choreography at the Internationales Solo-Tanz-Theater Festival in Stuttgart, Germany. She was recently a fellow at Ailey’s New Directions Choreography Lab and is the current choreography fellow at New York City Center.

Upcoming Events and Opportunities

Visit American Dance Abroad's Events & Opportunities page for all the latest deadlines. Contact to submit an opportunity for inclusion.

Camargo Foundation
Open Call for Residency Program
Due: October 1, 2021
Learn more
Ensibuko Arts Festival
Open Call for Festival Submissions
Due Rolling
Learn more
Cindanza 2021
Open Call for Video Submissions
Due: August 24, 2021
Learn More
China SPAF
Open Call for Pitch Session Applications
Due: July 31, 2021
Learn more
ACT Festival
Open Call for Festival Applications
Due December 13, 2021
Learn more
International Contemporary Dance Festival of Mexico City
Open Call for Festival Applications
Due: August 31, 2021
Learn more
*The inclusion of an opportunity or event posted on American Dance Abroad's newsletter should not be interpreted as an endorsement of that opportunity. American Dance Abroad has created this listing in an effort to increase access to and knowledge about international opportunities.

News From the Field  

American Dance Abroad brings you links to relevant COVID-19 articles of international importance. Please send us your suggestions for new links to include next month.

Dance Data Project has come out with an Artistic and Executive Leadership Report detailing the gender distribution among directors at the largest 100 ballet companies, as well as the pay gap between male and female leaders.
Created in response to the sociopolitical events of 2020, but reflective of a foreknown reality for Black dance artists, this week the series celebrates its one-year anniversary of documenting voices that are often unheard, perspectives that are not often prioritized, and ways of telling that are often overlooked.

650 people who attended the Aspen Valley disco in the Dutch city of Enschede had to prove they were vaccinated or COVID-free, but 165 have already tested positive in the aftermath.

While most dancers have been able to keep dancing from home through the pandemic, this change in setting has had an impact on their movement quality. As many make their way back to studios, the time spent in their living rooms often shows in their bodies and approach.
At least 14 unions representing actors, musicians, stagehands and other Broadway workers are still negotiating with producers over safety precautions. Public health guidance is continually evolving, but producers must also contend with what workers and audience members need to satisfy their comfort levels as they return to the historic buildings that house Broadway shows.

Virtual U.S. Dance Presentations of Note

Chicago Dance Makers Forum
Ten artists and their collaborators premiere new works created during the first half of 2021 through Chicago Dancemakers Forum’s 2021 Digital Dance Grants program. These local dance creators and their projects reflect a spirit of collaboration, experimentation, and artistic exploration in using digital technologies during the era of COVID-19.

July 16 - October 2021

6pm CT


  Register Here

Ayako Kato MuCCC, an annual contemporary dance festival, returns as an online event curated by Laurie MacFarlane and Ruben Ornelas. On July 2, Chicago's Art Union Humanscape Duo, Ayako Kato, dance, & Jason Roebke, double bass, will present "Eclipse" along with Mariah Steele/Quicksilver Dance, Ruben T. Ornelas (O/E), Jenna Hanlon, and BIODANCE.
June 30-July 2: Live Streaming
July 3-10: On Demand

Register Here

Sara Zalek This series focuses on the moments of co-creation and gives the artists a play-space to discover new ways of working together and interacting with the audience. The performance itself demonstrates the power of working together in the unknown, possibilities for Queering space, and the beauty in re-starting while making art! Date:
August 14, 2021

Learn More Here

Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival The 2021 festival extends well beyond the Jacob’s Pillow grounds. This summer, watch full performances on-demand, join livestream presentations and community events, and hear from the artists themselves in the signature PillowTalks series.  Date:
July 1- September 23

Free - $15
Learn More Here

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