Dance/NYC Announces Disability. Dance. Artistry. Residency Program

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Dance/NYC Announces Disability. Dance. Artistry. Residency Program


Dance/NYC and its program partners Gibney and Spaceworks are pleased to announce the Disability. Dance. Artistry Residency Program, made possible by the generous support of the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs CreateNYC Disability Forward Fund. Through the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation, Dance/NYC will award residencies to up to six (6) dance artists with spinal cord injury (SCI) and/or dance ensembles working with artists with SCI. Through the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs CreateNYC Disability Forward Fund, Dance/NYC will open the residency opportunity to up to two (2) more disabled artists. The purpose of the residency program is to expand opportunities for dancers with SCI and other disabilities, and to advance accessibility and inclusion within the larger dance, residency, and presenting communities.

Inspired by a Neilsen Foundation grant to the Vermont Studio Center to establish residencies for visual artists and writers with SCI, Dance/NYC’s new program will advance the cultural ecosystem to expressly and equitably foster opportunities for disabled dance artists. It responds directly to recent research, Performing Disability. Dance. Artistry. (Dance.NYC/PerformingDDA18), which underscores the need and opportunity to engage residency centers in the professional development and training of disabled artists and to provide critical training to presenters, driving mentorship and shared learning among artists and presenters.

“With this program, Dance/NYC continues to put disability front and center as a positive artistic and generative force,” says Elissa D. Hecker, Board Chair of Dance/NYC. “We aim to develop a program model that could be scaled up to serve both current and future artists living with spinal cord injury and the wider field of integrated and disability dance artists.”

In early December, Dance/NYC will issue open applications for:

Craig H. Neilsen Foundation Residencies
Individual dance artists and/or dance ensembles working with artists with SCI to apply for six-month residencies for the period of March 15, 2019 to September 15, 2019. Residencies will be awarded to up to six (6) dance artists to support their creative process.

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs CreateNYC Disability Forward Fund Residencies
Disabled dance artists or integrated dance companies, regardless of disability, to apply for three-month residencies for the period of March 15, 2019 to June 15, 2019. Residencies will be awarded to up to two (2) dance artists to support their creative process.

Benefits include honoraria of $5,000 per participant, an additional stipend of $1,000 for personal care assistant(s) if needed, up to 60 hours of rehearsal time at one of the partnering dance centers, a ten-class card at Gibney, administrative space, and marketing support.

Applications will be considered for only one residency program, per applicant. A copy of the applicant’s U.S. IRS Determination letter, which proves the entity's 501(c)(3) designation or tax-exempt status under Internal Revenue Code Section 170(c)(1) is required for proof of fiscal sponsorship. For details on how to become fiscally sponsored, please visit Dance.NYC. The program’s goals are artistic, and applicants with primarily therapeutic or educational goals will not be considered. Additional information about eligibility and application requirements will be available in December. The application will be available on Dance/NYC’s website at Dance.NYC.

The deadline for application submission is January 4, 2019 at 11:59 p.m. EST.

About Dance/NYC (Dance.NYC)
Dance/NYC’s mission is to promote the knowledge, appreciation, practice, and performance of dance in the metropolitan New York City area. It embeds values of justice, equity, and inclusion into all aspects of the organization. It works in alliance with Dance/USA, the national service organization for professional dance.

Visit Dance.NYC/DDA for details on Dance/NYC’s Disability. Dance. Artistry initiative.

About Gibney (
Founded in 1991, Gibney is a performing arts and social justice organization. Its mission is to tap into the vast potential of movement, creativity, and performance to effect social change and personal transformation through three interrelated areas of activity - Community Action, Company and Centers. Community Action is a worldwide leader in arts and social action and since 1999 has used dance to give voice to survivors of intimate partner violence through empowering creative workshops. More recently its Hands are for Holding program uses dance as a tool for anti-violence advocacy and to promote healthy and respectful relationships among underserved New York City youth. Gibney Dance Company is a new model that actives dancers as Artistic Associates whose work comprises artistry, advocacy and activism. Gibney Centers provide a powerhouse of cultural support for the performing arts community and the City itself with three remarkable spaces – Gibney Studios at 890 Broadway; Agnes Varis Performing Arts Center, and adjacent Next Phase Space at 280 Broadway. The Centers comprise 52,000 square feet and feature 23 studios, 4 performance spaces, a Gallery, Community Action Hub, Learning and Leadership Studio, and Digital Media Lab.

About Spaceworks (
Established in 2011, Spaceworks is a nonprofit organization that builds & operates subsidized creative workspace for New Yorkers. It does this in partnership with artists, cultural workers, and neighborhood residents. Spaceworks currently operates 5 multidisciplinary workspaces in Brooklyn and Queens, with additional projects in pre-development across New York City.

About the Craig H. Neilsen Foundation (
Craig H. Neilsen Foundation’s funding is dedicated to supporting both programs and scientific research to improve the quality of life for those affected by and living with spinal cord injury.

About the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs CreateNYC Disability Forward Fund (
The Department of Cultural Affairs (DCLA) inaugural CreateNYC Disability Forward Fund was designed to support new and ongoing programmatic efforts in fiscal year 2019 to engage people with disabilities as artists, cultural workers, and audience members. The program is a result of the development of the City’s cultural plan, CreateNYC. In particular, the plan's first-year priorities, include an expanded diversity, equity, and inclusion agenda that expressly addresses disability and disability artistry, to build greater diversity across the cultural sector.

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