Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Outcomes: Dance/NYC 2012 Symposium


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Dance/NYC's State of NYC Dance Symposium, held February 26, 2012 at Gibney Dance Center, featured sessions that, inspired by findings from Dance/NYC's industry report, State of NYC Dance, interrogated the current circumstances for artistry, audiences and management in NYC dance. Please see below for videos and other symposium outcomes.

Opening Session

Gina Gibney, Artistic Director, Gibney Dance and Gibney Dance Center
Lane Harwell, Director, Dance/NYC
Lisa Robb, Executive Director, New York State Council on the Arts

Download Lane's PowerPoint Presentation.

Data on NYC Dance

This panel interrogates Dance/NYC’s evolving body of research, including the State of NYC Dance, published in the fall 2011, based on New York State Cultural Data Project data on nonprofit dance. The panel will spotlight preliminary findings on fiscally sponsored artists, an employment report on NYC dance workers, 21-35, led by Dance/NYC Junior Committee, and new national findings from Dance/USA. What are the data on NYC dance and how are they and modes of collection and analysis changing? What can they tell us about activity, audiences, finances and resources? How can we use these data to advocate funding and policy development and improve industry management?

Julia Kelly, Dancer and Former Chair, Dance/NYC Junior Committee
Kerry McCarthy, Program Officer for Education, Arts & Human Justice, The New York Community Trust (Moderator)
Ian David Moss, Research Director, Fractured Atlas
Victoria Smith, Manager of Research, Dance/USA

Download Julia's PowerPoint Presentation.
Download Ian's PowerPoint Presentation.
Download Victoria's PowerPoint Presentation.



Meet the Press

Moderated by the National Endowment for the Arts’ Jamie Bennett, the panel brought together the Star-Ledger’s Robert Johnson, Dance Magazine’s Wendy Perron, The New York Times’ Brian Siebert, and choreographer, educator and blogger Gus Solomons, Jr. to discuss the current state of dance and the current state of dance coverage as journalism (and specifically arts journalism) experiences seismic shifts. The panel explored questions, such as, who gets to be a critic, and who gets to be covered in our rapidly evolving media and technological landscape? Are we experiencing an abundance or a dearth of opportunities for NYC dance artists to be seen? What is the role of the critic in creating community?

Jamie Bennett, Chief of Staff and Director of Public Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts (Moderator)
Robert Johnson, Dance Critic and Former Board Member, Dance Critics Association, The Star-Ledger
Wendy Perron, Editor-in-Chief, Dance Magazine
Brian Seibert, Dance Critic, The New York Times
Gus Solomons, Jr., Dancer, Choreographer, Dance Writer and Arts Professor at NYU/Tisch School of the Arts

This panel instigated a wide response, including the following article:

Read Zip the Snark by Eva Yaa Asantewaa (March 7, 2012)



Arts audiences are changing. This panel was a discussion of audiences for NYC dance in the larger context of cultural consumption. Panelists offered creative, analytical and service perspectives, and some new tools to better understand and reach audiences. Are there best practices for building NYC audiences in 2012? What’s happening and what’s possible? How can we build a community of practice? How can we engage local, on tour and virtual audiences, improving the numbers and levels of engagement?

Suzanne Callahan, Founder, Callahan Consulting for the Arts (Moderator)
Arthur Cohen, Chief Executive Officer, La Placa Cohen
Terence McFarland, Executive Director, LA Stage Alliance
Elizabeth Streb, Chairman of STREB, Inc. and Artistic Director for STREB Lab for Action Mechanics, Action Architect

Download Arthur's PowerPoint Presentation.
Download Terence's PowerPoint Presentation.



Dance/NYC research brings to light a strong start up culture in NYC dance. As demonstrated by revenue diversity, barter economies, and smaller groups’ disproportionately high level of new creation—premiers and commissions—entrepreneurship is alive. This panel examined new case stories and entrepreneurial approaches to dance-making and management that can help shape our future. What are our opportunities to innovate? What makes a good investment in dance? What models and resources can be borrowed from other sectors and industries to bolster NYC dance? How can we, individually and collectively, adapt and be the change we want to see in NYC dance?

Vin Cipolla, President, Municipal Art Society of New York
Emma Dunch, President, Dunch Arts, LLC (Moderator)
Carla Peterson, Artistic Director, New York Live Arts
Edwin Torres, Associate Director for New York City Opportunities Fund, Rockefeller Foundation

Read the Dance/NYC thought piece, Making NYC Dance Service Now and the Case for Entrepreneurship.


Dance Workforce Census: Earnings Among Individuals, Ages 21-35
Dance/NYC Junior Committee


The Dance/NYC Junior Committee provided a special session to share and discuss its Dance Workforce Census: Earnings Among Individuals, Ages 21-35 that was completed in spring 2011. The Junior Committee reviewed startling findings of the survey and discussed possible solutions, partnerships and perspectives to help this emerging demographic thrive in the city it loves.

Benn Rasmussen, Co-Curator, RoofTop Dance, Dance/NYC Junior Committee
Kaylen Ratto, Director of External Affairs, Youth America Grand Prix and Member, Dance/NYC Junior Committee
Kate Wilfert, Associate, The Philanthropy Centre at JPMorgan Private Bank and Member, Dance/NYC Junior Committee


Watch #SKYNOVA Backstage at the Symposium Interviews.

View the event's Facebook Photo Album with photos by Christopher Duggan.

Read a collection of Symposium Tweets on Storify.


Symposium partners include: Arts & Culture Consultants’ Network (ACCN), Christopher Duggan Photography, Dance/NYC Junior Committee, Edwards & Skybetter | Change Agency and #SKYNOVA, Gibney Dance Center and Nel Shelby Productions.
                                              Logos for: Gibney Dane Center, Dance/NYC Junior Committee, Nel Shelby Productions, Christopher Duggan, and Edwards & Skybetter

The Andrew W. Mellow Foundation
provided leadership support for the symposium. The program is also supported, in part, by public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts; and by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; and made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

                                                Logos for NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, NYSCA, and ArtWorks



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