Announcing the 24th Season of the NC Dance Festival!

August 18, 2014 § Leave a comment

5 artists, 5 shows, 4 cities


Photo of Leah Wilks by Chris Walt

Photo of Leah Wilks by Chris Walt

The NC Dance Festival (NCDF) is looking forward to the 24th Season! Each season, NC-based professional choreographers are chosen in a blind adjudication process to participate in the annual NCDF statewide tour. The following artists/companies have been chosen for the 24th season of the NC Dance Festival, which begins in September 2014:

Kristen Jeppsen Groves in collaboration with Defero Dance Collective (Fayetteville & Raleigh)
Gaspard Louis/Gaspard & Dancers (Durham)
Diego Carrasco Schoch (Durham)
Sara Tourek (Greensboro)
Leah Wilks (Durham)


The companies and choreographers included on the 2014-15 NC Dance Festival touring roster will be presented at four different NC locales. Host institutions will also invite artists from their own areas to participate in the concerts locally. Following is a listing of dates and places:

Raleigh, NC

September 20, 2014 7:30pm
Jones Auditorium, Meredith College

Featuring: Diego Carrasco Dance, Gaspard&Dancers, Kristen Jeppsen Groves (in collaboration with Defero Dance Collective), Sara Ruth Tourek, VECTOR (Leah Wilks).

Local group Black Box Dance Theatre will also present work.

Boone, NC

October 24-25, 2014, 7:30pm
Valborg Theatre, Appalachian State University

Friday: Diego Carrasco Dance, Sara Ruth Tourek, VECTOR (Leah Wilks) and others

Saturday: Gaspard&Dancers, Kristen Jeppsen Groves (in collaboration with Defero Dance Collective) and others

Greensboro, NC

November 1, 2014, 7:30pm
Aycock Auditorium, UNC-Greensboro

Featuring: Diego Carrasco Dance, Gaspard&Dancers, Kristen Jeppsen Groves (in collaboration with Defero Dance Collective), Sara Ruth Tourek, VECTOR (Leah Wilks).

Local artist Amy Beasley and Audience Choice Show winner Elissa Edwards will also present work.

Charlotte, NC

January 24, 2015, 7:30pm
Robinson Hall, UNC-Charlotte

Featuring: Diego Carrasco Dance, Gaspard&Dancers, Kristen Jeppsen Groves (in collaboration with Defero Dance Collective), Sara Ruth Tourek, VECTOR (Leah Wilks) and others.

Check our website for Outreach classes and chances to speak with the artists in each site.

Come and see the NCDF in your neighborhood and support “Dance Local” artists!

North Carolina Dance Companies (Wilmington)

August 5, 2014 § Leave a comment

Wilmington is a port city in and is the county seat of New Hanover County in coastal southeastern North Carolina. Wilmington is the home of EUE Screen Gems Studios, the largest domestic television and movie production facility outside of California. Today we are focusing on three companies currently based in Wilmington, NC: Alban Elved Dance Company, Forward Motion Dance Company, and Techmoja Dance and Theater Company.

Alban Elved Dance Company (AEDC)


According to its website,  Alban Elved Dance Company (AEDC) was founded in Berlin, Germany in 1997 by artistic director and choreographer Karola Lüttringhaus to form an outlet for her diverse artistic pursuits. Ms Lüttringhaus creates dance-theatre that blends multiple art forms with a truly unique and visceral kinetic voice that seeks to extract the psychology of human existence and distills it into an arcane and dynamic elegance that embraces intellect and instinct in equal measure. Her work is fiercely physical, tracing the changeable electricity of thought and sensation that underlies human interaction and interpersonal relationships. Merging American experiences with her European roots she draws the viewer into enchanting, startling and evocative psychological landscapes.

AEDC is now based in Wilmington and pursues the creation of interdisciplinary art experiences through a continuous search for what lies beneath the surface of life to fulfill one of humanities most fundamental needs: meaningful exchange with other people.

AEDC is helping to coordinate the SARUS FESTIVAL  that will be held on August 21st-24th in Wilmington and will also be performing. Also, don’t forget to check out Karola Lüttringhaus’ class schedule on her website. She teaches a wide range of classes from African to Modern dance.

Techmoja Dance and Theater Company


Directed by Kevin Green, Techmoja Dance and Theater Company provides an outlet for creative artists of all ethnicities, whether trained or untrained, with hopes of fostering an abundance of talent. The company’s main goal is to produce quality performance for both the spectator and the performer.

Forward Motion Dance Company


Forward Motion Dance Company, Inc., is a Wilmington, NC, based non-profit 501(c)(3) dance organization whose mission is to provide local and regional communities with quality modern contemporary dance and education in the art of dance, as well as enhance the local arts community by providing performance opportunities for area dancers and performance artists.

The company was founded by dancer and choreographer Tracey Varga in 2001 and incorporated in 2004, although Tracey has been dancing and choreographing in Wilmington since relocating from Seattle in 1996. Forward Motion Dance sponsors and co-sponsors public arts performances such as “Arts Sensation”, and offers education for schools and community organizations including the Wilmington School of Ballet, DREAMS of Wilmington, The Dance Cooperative, and the YWCA Lower Cape Fear.

On September 12-13, 2014, Forward Motion Dance Company will hold their Annual Performance in Wilmington, NC. There is more information to come on their annual performance, with three performances showcasing the talents of Choreographer Tracey Varga and local dance and music artists when it gets closer to the performance. Click here to view some videos from last years performance.

Let us know if there are any other Wilmington area companies we have forgotten to mention. This concludes our blog post series of the dance companies in North Carolina!

Dance Project is accepting applications for Fall Internships!

August 1, 2014 § Leave a comment

DP blogheader

Fall 2014 Internship Opportunities

Work in beautiful downtown Greensboro with Dance Project, Inc.!!

The Dance Project is now accepting applications for internships during the Fall of 2014! Assistance is needed August 11th-December 1st (dates may be negotiable). These internships will provide opportunities to work for a non-profit organization and gain insight into the life of arts administration. An ideal intern candidate would be reliable and prompt, with strong verbal and written communication skills, and an interest in working with a community-minded organization. Dance Project, Inc. is an organization with three activities: a school, a festival, and a dance company. Working in this atmosphere provides invaluable experience with the multiple facets of an arts career. For more information:


Available positions include:

School Operations

Assist the School Director with administration of a non-profit community dance program. Activities include: assisting with marketing and communications, planning for spring programming, costuming for performances, and assisting with billing and attendance reports. Must be computer-proficient (Microsoft Word and Excel), detail-oriented, demonstrate good interpersonal communication skills, and work well independently. Approximately 8 hours/week.

Program Assistance

Assist the Program Director with wide-ranging tasks involved in the administration of a busy non-profit arts organization.  Activities include: coordination and evaluation of the NC Dance Festival tour; assisting with marketing and communications, particularly online and social media presence.  Intern may also assist with assembling grant applications.  Must have excellent writing and editing skills, be creative, detail-oriented, and work well independently.  Previous experience with social media sites highly preferred. Knowledge of Microsoft Word and Excel required.  Approximately 6-8 hours/week.


In addition to gaining experience, interns may take free dance classes at our School, and, with faculty approval, may apply for academic credit (45 hours of work = 1 credit, 90 hours = 2 credits, and 135 hours = 3 credits).


To apply, submit a letter of interest and resume to the address below. Please indicate the position(s) you are interested in being considered for.

Dance Project, Inc.
Attn: Lauren Trollinger
200 N. Davie Street, #7
Greensboro, NC 27401

North Carolina Dance Companies (Triangle Continued)

July 29, 2014 § Leave a comment

Today we are going to focus on nine more dance companies from the Triangle area:  BLACK IRISH, Code f.a.d. Company, ShaLeigh Dance Works, Black Box Dance, Bellan Contemporary Dance Theatre, African American Dance Ensemble, Defero Dance Collective, Footnotes Tap Ensemble, and SOULOWORKS.



BLACK IRISH is a Raleigh-based contemporary hip hop company focusing in BI’CHH (bee-chay) movement (BLACK IRISH Contemporary Hip Hop). BI’CHH is choreographically characterized by intricate movement invention, emphasis in musicality, innovation in anatomical initiation and utilization of orthogonal lines. As a contemporary company, BLACK IRISH is continuously exploring movement as well as adapting traditional genres to enhance and define this continuously evolving dance genre. BLACK IRISH has been theorized to have been the descent of both Spanish and Irish Ancestry. Their mission is to expose contemporary dance in an ever evolving world of dance and promote contemporary movement as it continues to inspire the public. They hope to elevate the ideals of all viewers and dreamers of what people think dance is, should be and can be if you aspire for greatness and scale.



Code f.a.d. Company (where f.a.d. in an acronym for film—art—dance) is a group of artists committed to combining film, visual art, and dance into precisely designed performance experiences. Artistic Director Autumn Mist Belk is a choreographer, dancer, filmmaker, and graphic designer and has previously shown her choreography and visual artwork in venues across the United States. Belk earned her B.A. in dance and studio art from the University of Alabama and her M.F.A. in dance from the University of Maryland. In addition to leading Code f.a.d. Company, Belk is on faculty at NC State University, where she teaches dance, yoga, Pilates, and other health and fitness courses.

Code f.a.d. Company’s mission is:
• to create multimedia, movement-based artwork for performance and exhibition, enriching the community and the lives of artists and audiences;
• to educate youth and the greater community in the art of dance through performances and workshops in schools, community centers, and festivals; and
• to provide professional-level dance instruction to its members and qualified community participants.

Click here to view excerpts from previous evening-length works. Company auditions for upcoming 2014-2015 season are August 3rd. Click here for more information.

ShaLeigh Dance Works


According to the website, ShaLeigh Dance Works was founded in 2005. The company emerged onto the North Carolina dance scene with a premiere of Returning at the Broach Theater in Greensboro, NC. Since then, the intimate ensemble ranging from 3 to 7 performers has toured its growing repertoire in six cities along the east coast. The company is currently based Durham, NC.

Led by choreographer and visual artist ShaLeigh Comerford, the company’s work has been described as dance theatre with a “stark and inventive” physical language by the Raleigh News & Observer. The diverse repertoire builds on an intense collaboration with the performers and often explores the personal and political landscape of violence.



Black Box Dance, based in Raleigh, NC, was formerly known as Even Exchange Dance Theater 1997-2013. After 15 wonderful, collaborative, and creative years, EEDT is transitioning to a different sort of dance company. Under the artistic direction of company member, Michelle Pearson, Even Exchange will be getting a new name, include new artists and dancers, and new partnerships. However, many aspects of EEDT’s former work will continue in the community, stage, and studio.

Black Box Dance’s mission is to celebrate dance through creating, teaching and performing works that interpret, influence and inspire those within their local and global communities.

Bellan Contemporary Dance Theatre


Bellan Contemporary Dance Theatre is a Durham-based contemporary dance company committed to the continued growth of dance as art. The company provides emerging and master choreographers, dancers and artists an inclusive environment for the creation, development, curation and presentation of groundbreaking, multi-genre, multi-media collaborations to worldwide audiences.

The vision of Bellan is to be a leading creative and performing arts organization that entertains and educates audiences around the world. Bellan aims to create and perform unique, dynamic, world-class creative works on stage, film and in the community. Click here to learn about Bellan’s process.

African American Dance Ensemble


African American Dance Ensemble (AADE) is an African dance company based in Durham, NC. The story of the African American Dance Ensemble begins with Chuck Davis, a native of Raleigh, N.C., whose path from Raleigh’s all black Ligon High School through Howard University’s Theater and Dance Program eventually led him to New York City and the world of professional dance.

AADE’s mission is to preserve and share the finest traditions of African and African American Dance and Music through research, education, performance and entertainment; to focus on the health and education of our community. Their purpose is to help the youth become more active through dance and the arts. With their motto: “Peace, Love, Respect for Everybody” the Ensemble celebrates traditional African culture, aesthetics and values to encourage cross-cultural dialogue, cooperation and understanding.

The African American Dance Ensemble offers a variety of programs for special Events! - National and International touring, Corporate Retreats, Seminars, Concerts, Workshops and Residencies for Charter and Public Schools and all grades from K-12, as well as Colleges and Universities. They are currently in the NCAC Artist Directory, United Arts of Wake County Directory, Cumberland County Directory and CAPS in Durham, NC.

Defero Dance Collective


Defero Dance Collective (DD Collective) is a contemporary dance company, comprised of working dance professionals, students, scientists, teachers, accountants, and writers, based in Raleigh, North Carolina, who span locations, backgrounds, and ages. The Collective’s dancers come from strong artistic and technical backgrounds in dance, and their mission is to use this training for the good of their local community – to empathize with all the intricacies of the human experience, to affect social and relational change, to push the boundaries of dance in North Carolina and to simply entertain and celebrate movement. Defero means ‘to carry, to bear, to bring, to hand over, to communicate, and to offer.’ The Collective strives to represent whatever is good, true, and beautiful, bringing a greater understanding of the human experience to the Triangle community through movement.

DD Collective is currently partnering with Kristen Groves for the North Carolina Dance Festival on Tour. The North Carolina Dance Festival on Tour performances are in Raleigh September 20th, Boone October 24th & 25th, Greensboro November 1st, and January 24, 2015!

If you are interested in joining Defero Dance as a company member you can contact DD Collective at



Footnotes Tap Ensemble, a non-profit professional tap company, was founded by Robin Vail and Mimi Benjamin in 2002. The Ensemble’s mission is to promote, educate and perform this truly unique American dance art through annual ensemble concerts, community concerts and tap workshops.

Footnotes brings varied and highly-acclaimed repertoire, and affordable workshops to the community. Footnotes’ commissioned works include pieces from Michelle Dorrance, Josh Hilberman, Robert Perera, Dorothy Wasserman, Lane Alexander and Gene Medler, Director of the highly acclaimed North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble. Footnotes performs mostly in the Triangle region of North Carolina and occasionally out of state. Many of their festival and community shows are free, and we produce an annual full-length concert. Footnotes is holding auditions on August 17th at 6pm at Ballet School of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC for those that are interested! For more information contact



SOULOWORKS/Andrea E. Woods & Dancers is a modern dance company based in Durham, NC with a mission to create and perform group and solo works using dance, music, spoken word and multimedia as contemporary African American folklore. Woods is committed to performing in theaters was well as universities, community centers, schools and libraries.

The dances have a generous worldview while centralizing and affirming a positive reflection of African Diasporic culture. Woods calls her dances SOULOWORKS because they are works from the heart, works from the soul.


Along with these dance companies, there are also many independent choreographers working in the Triangle area who present their work in variety of formal and informal settings. Let us know if there are any other Triangle area companies we have forgotten to mention!

We will be wrapping up this series on blog posts with the dance companies in Wilmington, NC next week!

North Carolina Dance Companies (Triangle)

July 22, 2014 § Leave a comment


The North Carolina Research Triangle Region consists of the area within Chapel Hill, Durham, and Raleigh. The Triangle region is ranked among the best places in the nation to live and to do business in North Carolina. This well-developed region has a lot of dance companies and project-based work. Today, we are going to focus on nine diverse dance companies: The Kearns Dance Project, Natalie Marrone &The Dance Cure, Gaspard & Dancers, nosi DANCE theater, Renay Aumiller Dances, Justin Turnow & COMPANY, VECTOR, Carrasco Dance Works, and Carolina Ballet.

1dff79_7cd7933a68ed9f4f33bbbfb9a79f30da.jpg_srz_p_150_150_75_22_0.50_1.20_0The Kearns Dance Project (KDP)


According to the website, the Kearns Dance Project (KDP) is a North Carolina non-profit corporation based in Burlington, a member of the N.C. Center for Nonprofits, a member of the NC Arts Council Touring Directory, and a member of the NC Dance Alliance. The company works with a variety of dancers and designers on a per project basis.

KDP makes innovative and dynamic dance. The mission of KDP is three-fold: First, to enrich, educate and entertain audiences by producing innovative and dynamic choreography. Second, to create collaborative opportunities for artists to develop talents in all aspects of dance production. Third, to provide thought-provoking educational outreach programs to the greater community through the art of dance. Click here to view a clip of previous work by director Lauren Kearns.

The first annual company season will feature two signature duets Swinging on a Bench and Twister as well as the premiere of a new duet Kapow…Pow…Bam…Zap! and the full-length A Hot Topic of ConversationKDP Season Premiere Performance is on November 13-14, 2014 @7:30pm at PSI Theatre in Durham, NC. Make sure to see the show!

logo_homeNatalie Marrone & The Dance Cure


Natalie Marrone and The Dance Cure is a contemporary, all female performance company based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina dedicated to the creation of culturally driven dances that bring to life the broader scope of human experience.

According to the website, the company was established in 1998 and thrives on performing and teaching an accessible yet diverse body of dances that explore the many rites of passage woven through the fabric of human experience. Marrone’s Italian ethnicity serves as the point of the departure for most of the company’s choreographic creations which fuse the athleticism of contemporary dance with folk dances, myths and rituals of her southern Italian background. The all female company can be seen throughout the state of North Carolina inspiring a broad participation in dance which nurtures individual expression, celebrates diversity, and passionately pursues community unity.

Click here to view demo clips of some of Natalie’s work.

5801c46b5827fb64e9d7dbe66a514089Gaspard & Dancers


According to the website, the company, formed in 2009 by Gaspard Louis, is based in Durham North Carolina. In a city with a rich, diverse community of artists, performers and creative energies, opportunities for collaboration abound. They’ve worked with local musicians, composers, photographers, dance and film festivals.

Gaspard & Dancers’ vision is to create, perform, and teach movement that is physically inventive, emotionally dynamic, and inspiring to people of all ages and backgrounds. Inclusion is central to the mission of Gaspard&Dancers. Through performances, demonstrations, workshops and long-term residencies within the community and around the world, their goal is to expand the creative potential of all who see and share in their work. Click here to see pictures and video clips from some of Gaspard’s work.

Recently, the company performed at the American Dance Festival at Duke University in June. Next the company will have their Fifth annual performances at Duke University Reynolds Theater September 25 & 26 as well as joining other North Carolina local artists in North Carolina Dance Festival on Tour 2014-2015. The North Carolina Dance Festival on Tour performances are in Raleigh September 20th, Boone October 24th & 25th, Greensboro November 1st, and January 24, 2015!

logo_onWHnosi DANCE theater


nosi DANCE theater (nDt) is a multi-faceted contemporary dance company ushering in a new era of dance. Their goal is to broaden the dance community, thru its participants, audiences and exposure showing the wondrous diversity of our world.

According to its website, nDt idea emerged in 2005 by artistic director Allison R. Daniels “to keep professional dance thriving in the Triangle all year and expose the importance of all arts in our community, for ALL audiences-making them a more powerful force for our culture & world.” The company is based in Durham, NC, Daniels’ hometown.

Along with the company nDt has a education/outreach sector called nosi educates which conducts an array of school programs, workshops/residencies, and master classes. They believe that all people contribute to movement individually, from children to adults, we each have a special flow. nosi educates programs are taliored to fit your needs as they may be scheduled alone or together. A 3-day residency may be programmed with a performance and interactive workshops for a complete experience.   

Click here to view excerpts of Daniels’ work.

Renay Aumiller Dances (RAD)


Renay Aumiller Dances (RAD) is a Durham-based contemporary dance company that strives to create innovative and thought-provoking choreography for concert stages and alternative venues. RAD was founded June 1, 2012 but has been extremely successful.

Renay says “through my dance works, I seek to represent learned human behavior through an amalgam of classical beauty and ugly truths. Seeking movement as unique and unrelenting as the individual human anatomy, my goal is to shift perspectives of beauty. I experiment with the illusion of order amid chaotic movement. My aesthetic shifts between aggressive physicality and awkward fluidity; it accentuates spontaneity, absurdity and social expectations of human existence.” Click here to watch RAD repertory.

logoJustin Turnow & COMPANY


Justin Turnow & COMPANY is a contemporary dance company based in Durham, NC. By utilizing both composition and improvisation, and reconsidering existing ideas about movement and content, the goal of artistic director Justin Tornow is to experiment with the formality of modern and contemporary dance. COMPANY is currently comprised of 4 dance artists developing and presenting new work at various local and regional performances. COMPANY aims to organize and present events that showcase a range of quality, relevant art both in the Durham, NC area and through touring efforts. A curated dance festival for local and regional artists is in the works for 2015.

Justin Tornow and COMPANY also present a recurring, multi-disciplinary artist series in Durham, NC called PROMPTS. For each event, a prompt is issued to the arts community: any artist can sign up to present a response to the prompt. PROMPTS events are open to the public by donation, and are meant to foster the creation of new work, collaboration, and to rally more community support for the area’s working artists. The next PROMPTS is on Friday, August 22th, 2014 at  7-9pm at The Carrack Modern Art in Durham.



VECTOR is a Durham-based multi-media dance company creating work that questions the rules and societal norms that shape our daily lives.  Directed by visual artist Jon Haas and choreographer Leah Wilks, the company uses highly physical, detail-oriented movement in combination with video, audio documentary, motion-tracking, and projections to create participatory installations, evening-length performances and dance films.  Their recent projects include Still Point (2013), Secrets I Never Told My Mother (2012), and the upcoming HABITUS (2015).

Jon and Leah met in 2011 working on the production Mau A Malawi: Stories of AIDS Through Music at Memorial Hall in Chapel Hill. Through the craziness of mounting a cross-disciplinary show in a very short period of time they decided they liked working together. From 2011-2013 they collaborated on projects as their own separate companies LeahWilksDance and HaaStudios, and then finally decided to join forces under the moniker VECTOR in 2014.

Along with Gaspard & Dancers and Carrasco Dance Works, Leah Wilks will be performing a solo entitled Mess in the North Carolina Dance Festival starting in September. Click here to view past works!

Diego Carrasco Dance


Diego Carrasco Dance s is a Durham-based Modern dance company founded by choreographer Diego Carrasco. His works have been described as “…excellent pieces distinguished by their kinetic force, structural craft and sensitive musicality.” Click here to view Diego’s past works.

Diego Carrasco Dance will be on tour with the 2014-2015 season for North Carolina Dance Festival. The North Carolina Dance Festival on Tour performances are in Raleigh September 20th, Boone October 24th & 25th, Greensboro November 1st, and January 24, 2015!

carolina-balletCarolina Ballet


According to its website, Carolina Ballet is one of America’s premiere arts organizations. Launched as a professional dance company in 1997 under the direction of Artistic Director/CEO Robert Weiss, Carolina Ballet has since garnered critical praise from the national and international media, staged 80 world premiere ballets, and toured internationally in China and Hungary. Weiss, former artistic director of the Pennsylvania Ballet and principal dancer at New York City Ballet under the legendary George Balanchine, programs traditional ballets by legendary masters and new works by contemporary choreographers.

Carolina Ballet’s mission is to perform world-class professional ballet, entertaining and enlightening audiences in Raleigh, the Triangle region, the State of North Carolina, and beyond. It will accomplish this mission by:

  • attracting, developing, and retaining excellent dancers and artistic personnel combined with a fiscally responsible management and board of directors;
  • commissioning new works by innovative choreographers;
  • presenting traditional ballets of legendary masters;
  • educating current and future audiences through programs for school-aged children and other performance outreach activities.

On September 11-28, 2014, Carolina Ballet will open their 17th season with the beloved Russian folktale, Firebird. This mesmerizing ballet is set to the groundbreaking score by Igor Stravinsky and choreographed by their very own Artistic Director, Robert Weiss. This program will also feature new ballets by Zalman Raffael and Robert Weiss. Click here to view the 2014-2015 season performances.

This is just the beginning. Tune in next week to view more dance companies in the Triangle area.


North Carolina Dance Companies (Piedmont Triad)

July 16, 2014 § Leave a comment

The North Carolina Piedmont Triad area consists of the region within and surrounding the three major cities Greensboro, Wintson-Salam, and High Point. It is a metropolitan area that is connected by Interstates 40, 85, 73, & 74. While this area is small there are some fantastic dance companies. Today we are focusing on: Jan Van Dyke Group, Greensboro Ballet, Cyrus Art Production, TERRANOVA Dance Theatre, Helen Simoneau Danse, Sidelong Dance Company, Winston-Salem Festival Ballet, High Point Ballet, and John Gamble Dance Theater.

vanJan Van Dyke Group


The Van Dyke Dance Group is a division of Dance Project, Inc., a non-profit organization under the direction of Jan Van Dyke, with three activities: a statewide dance festival, a dance school and a professional dance company.

The company members, selected by invitation, are all local artists with strong performance and educational experience, with the commitment, precision, and energy necessary to perform Van Dyke’s choreography. Several of the company dancers have been with Van Dyke since the earliest performances, investing their careers in the Triad, and giving the Group a maturity and depth not often seen in regional dance performance.

Van Dyke’s choreography, known for dynamic energy and rhythmic precision, seems to live within its musical form, bringing both the movement and the music to a new plane. Her dances are highly structured and meticulously crafted while the movement vocabulary is quick, vigorous and driving. THE WASHINGTON POST has described her use of form as “…immaculate. Thematic variation and recapitulation, counterpoint and consonance occur so naturally that one is hardly aware of the strict structure until the end.”

The Van Dyke Dance Group is preparing for their Fall concert at the UNCG Dance Theater, September 11-12. They (Dance Project) are in the midst of an ambitious fundraiser–to raise $10,000 during the month of July! Click here for more information on the organization and to donate.

37_20120801185631_3790_largeGreensboro Ballet


Within the Greensboro Ballet is a company and non-profit ballet school (only one in Greensboro area) that offers dance education to children of all ages as well as adults, while the company is professional dancers who share the love of expressing human thought and emotion through the international language of ballet performance.

At the end of every season around end of May, Greensboro Ballet hold an audition for the next season. For the upcoming 2014-2015 season, Greensboro ballet is performing classical ballets and 20th century works by the renowned George Balanchine. To see more information about the performances click here.

titleCyrus Art Production


According to their website, Cyrus Art Production LLC produces live performance, visual art, guest lecture series, community outreach, classes, and inspiring cultural events. Directed by UNCG Associate Professor Duane Cyrus, a former member of both Alvin Ailey and Martha Graham dance companies, this group brings a diverse and fluid cultural perspective to its audiences, providing an experience that goes beyond the limitations of one specific medium or art form to build a community for creative expression.

Artist development and entrepreneurship in the arts are an important part of the Cyrus Art Production ethos. Duane Cyrus regularly presents development seminars and courses for artists to develop career management and sustainability skills. Coupled with high standards of excellence for dance and theatrical performance, Cyrus Art Production is fostering a more integrated approach to artist development and presentation.

Cyrus Art Production’s next performance is Dance Gala Greensboro 2014 on September 26 at 7pm! This is their fall season concert at Aycock Auditorium located at 408 Tate Street, Greensboro, NC.Check out Cyrus Art Production’s one minute promo video to see some of their work and behind the scenes footage!

TERRANOVA Dance Theatre (TDT)


TERRANOVA Dance Theatre is directed by Jen Guy Metcalf, Assistant Professor at Elon University, where she teaches Ballet, Pointe, Dance for the Camera, and directs the fall dance concert. According to its website, TERRANOVA Dance Theatre is a company that strives to create innovative work for a variety of spaces including the STAGE (concert dance), SITE (site-specific dance) and SCREEN (dance for camera). The company name derived from TERRA: earth, land, territory, ground, place, topography, etc. and IN(NOVA)TION: featuring new method; introducing new ideas; original and creative in thinking.

Check out the Trailer from TDT’s dance films entitled “The Window of the 11th Floor”.

Helen Simoneau Danse


According to Helen Simoneau Danse’s FaceBook page, Simoneau’s work has been described as “unique and striking” (danceviewtimes blog) and “a treat of choreographic craft and imagery” (exploredance online magazine).

Based in both North Carolina and New York City, the company is committed to presenting innovative dances works by Québécois choreographer and founder Helen Simoneau. In addition to an annual company season in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Simoneau’s works has been presented in Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Greece, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, and has toured throughout Germany, Asia, and the United States. As a dance maker, she is interested in the intricacies of human relationships and explores the ways we, as individuals, interact and relate to the larger group.

Click here to view some excerpts of some of Helen Simoneau’s work.

Sidelong Dance Company


According to their website, Sidelong Dance Company brings a new esthetic and fresh ideas to the modern dance scene of the Piedmont Triad. Based in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, this professional company draws on the expertise of dancers living and working in our community. Sidelong Dance performances combine an extensive catalog of pieces choreographed by director Karla Coghill, company members, and assorted guest artists with frequent premieres to keep programs fresh, yet familiar.

Sidelong Dance has an active outreach program and brings both live performances and workshops to groups within our community who may not otherwise have the opportunity to experience the joy of dance.

Winston-Salem Festival Ballet


Winston-Salem Festival Ballet (WSFB) has two sectors: the Company and the School. According to their website, WSFB is a professional dance company under the direction of founder and artistic director, Gary Taylor, committed to excellence in the performing arts and providing extraordinary performances that are accessible and enjoyable. Their mission is to create and inspire, engage and excite their audiences, as they experience the art of dance. The School offers an exciting place to learn for dancers ages 3 to adult.

WSFB has a boutique company approach to performance and hires dancers on an as-needed project basis determined by the skill set of the role, and keeps a database of dancer resumes as a resource. They invite interested dancers to send in a resume, full body and head shot, along with a video link. Professional dancers are also invited to inquire about classes with the director.

High Point Ballet


According to the website, High Point Ballet is a non-profit under the direction of a board of directors, representative of the community, and is responsible for developing the season’s activities and performance schedule. The company serves as a valuable resource for artistically focused individuals aspiring to a career in dance and the performing arts.

High Point Ballet provides a vast repertoire of classical and contemporary dance works as well as arts education programs for all.  Currently, over 200 members of the company have gone on to such noted schools and companies as University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Kansas City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, School of American Ballet, Boston Conservatory, Joffrey Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Nashville Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Alvin Ailey, Ballet Met, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.

John Gamble Dance Theater

John Gamble’s artistry is deeply rooted in NC’s past, present, and future dance community.  He has been dancing local in NC for 27 years! With his company John Gamble Dance Theater (JGDT), he continues to make and present work at UNCG.  He also presents work annually at the Greensboro Fringe Festival and tours with NC Dance Festival about every other year. JGDT produces evening length dances/plays that often address political and social issues.

Along with these dance companies, there are also a number of independent choreographers working in the Triad area who present their work in variety of formal and informal settings including the Greensboro Fringe Festival.

Don’t forget to check out previous post Asheville and Charlotte dance companies as well.

North Carolina Local Dance Companies (Charlotte)

July 8, 2014 § 1 Comment

Not only is Charlotte is one of the largest cities in North Carolina, but one of the largest dance hubs as well. Today, we are going to focus on some of the major companies in the area: Moving Poets Theater Charlotte, Charlotte Ballet, Baran Dance, THE MARK Dance Company, Caroline Calouche & Company, Martha Connerton/Kinetic Works Dance Company, 4thRight Dance, Triptych Collective, and Taproot Ensemble.

cropped-Moving_Poets_WebsiteHeader4Moving Poets Theater Charlotte: 


According to their website, Moving Poets is an international community of artists and creative professionals of different disciplines, cultures and age groups, based in Charlotte, USA (Moving Poets Charlotte) and in Berlin, Germany (Moving Poets Berlin). The mission of this non-profit organization is present high quality cross-disciplinary dance theater and serve as a cultural arts incubator, that brings local, national, international artists and creative professionals together, to collectively create new works to be presented to the community.

Moving Poets’ next performance will be their Fall Production Novemeber 5-8, 2014 at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, Booth Playhouse. To see a previous piece Moving Poets has performed click here.

logo_headerCharlotte Ballet:


Charlotte Ballet, formerly known at North Carolina Dance Theatre (NCDT), is a world class repertory dance ensemble located in Downtown Charlotte. According to their website, Charlotte Ballet is known for their high energy, precision and speed, as well as their ability to perform a versatile repertoire ranging from full-length classical ballets to innovative contemporary works. The Charlotte Ballet’s breathtaking beauty, boundless energy and amazing athleticism have dazzled audiences and critics the world over. They are a well-established organization that was created in the 1970’s.

Charlotte Ballet is currently working on their show DANGEROUS LIAISONS, which will be performed October 9-14, 2014 at Knights Theater. As stated on their website: Dangerous Liaisons, a dramatic and passionate story, is brought to life through the inventive choreography of Sasha Janes. Not only will you get to see spectacular dance, but you’re also in for a live music performance! Popular cellist Ben Sollee, who composed an original score for the ballet, performs live, suspended over the stage. You will be on the edge of your seats throughout this thrilling ballet, which culminates in an intense duel to the death.

Charlotte Ballet has received critical recognition nationally for excellence in programming, education and outreach, and dance training.They have school year programs, summer programs, and summer intensive along with their company. Auditions in a company class are by invitation only.  To be considered for a company class audition,you must send your resume, headshot, full body dance photo along with a video link of a classical and contemporary ballet variation. They also allow dancers to send in a video audition, but make sure to include your resume, headshot and full body dance photo along with a video link of a classical and contemporary ballet variation. All materials may be emailed to GRETCHEN JAX.

bg-logo11Baran Dance:


Baran Dance is a contemporary dance company. According to the website, Baran Dance was founded by Audrey Ipapo Baran in 2012. Baran Dance believes that dance should be inspiring and accessible, not just for avid dance patrons, but for anyone seeking a visually awing experience. They aspire to create dances to make you feel, think, possibly cry, and maybe even laugh. Baran’s work is very organic. Baran Dance seamlessly blends physicality and artistry, creating work that is available and appealing for all audiences, regardless of cultural, educational, or socioeconomic background. “We move to move YOU!”

This season Baran Dance has some great upcoming events and performances. On SundaySeptember 7th, 2014 @ 10am-4:30pm at Open Door Studios (1318-D1 Central Avenue) there is an event called So You Think You Can Baran Dance?, which will have classes in Contemporary, Jazz, Musical Theatre, and Improv for $15/class or $50/all day! If you can’t attend class you should check out Tiny Dances performance November 22 @ 8:00 pm at the Petra’s Piano Bar. Join Baran Dance for an intimate evening of dance and drinks! They will be performing solos, duets, and trios in a cabaret setting, with cameos from some of our favorite musical guests. Tiny dances… big fun! Also for dancers ages 14-18, BD2: Youth Ensemble Auditions are Sunday, September 14th, 2014 ​4​:00pm-5:30pm at Open Door Studios (Rehearsals: Sundays @ 4pm)!

THE MARK Dance Company:


According to their Facebook page, THE MARK dance company was founded in 2012 by Artistic Director, Arlynn Zachary. It is a fusion-based company encouraging the aesthetic qualities and technical applications of varied dance mediums.The company is dedicated to impacting the audience in a way that allows each person to leave the space feeling as though they have been marked by what they have just experienced. “With each step we take, there is a mark left behind.” – Arlynn Zachary

THE MARK dance company recently performed their finale performance for the Charlotte New Music Festival and Dance Co-Lab. on June 28, 2014 at JCSU Arts Factory’s Black Box Theatre. Follow THE MARK dance company on Facebook to keep up with the company and be informed!

2011 logo with slogan smallCaroline Calouche & Company (CC&Co.):


According to the website, CC&Co is Charlotte’s only aerial and contemporary dance company and school.  CC&Co. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring people of diverse backgrounds to explore beyond their boundaries through performance and education.  Our vision is to create educational opportunities for people to experience the world from a unique and artistic perspective, which will enrich their lives and the lives of those around them.

CC&Co. is currently gearing up for their CADE (Carolina Aerial and Dance Exchange) classes. The class started July 28 and run til August 1. Sign up for classes here to take class from Caroline! Also follow CC&Co. on Facebook to get updates about their upcoming season. Their first performance Rouge is in October.

imgresMartha Connerton/Kinetic Works Dance Company:


According to the website, Kinetic Works was formed in 2000. The company offers a spectrum of programs including educational experiences for schools through the Kinetyx Dance Ensemble and KinetiKids artist residencies; professional concert performances and pre-professional training through special workshops; and Connerton’s work as a contemporary choreographer and guest teacher of ballet and modern dance a make up another strand in the spectrum.

Mission Statement: Martha Connerton/Kinetic Works is a multifaceted company whose mission is to foster awareness of dance as an art form that impacts lives in a direct, positive and evolving process.

To see some of Kinetic Works’ choreography click here.

4thRight Dance:


4thRight Dance is a Modern/Contemporary company that is run by Ashley Suttlar Martin from Charlotte. According to the website, she is an Independent Artist, performing and teaching throughout the country. She holds a MFA in Dance from Temple University and a BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Virginia Commonwealth University. Ashley is a very busy woman being co-producer of FRESH performance series, teaching at Bokwa fitness and MoveStudio, and directing her own company. She currently serves on faculty at Winthrop University and the SC Governor’s School of Arts and Humanities.

In the upcoming season, their first performance of FRESH will be August 30, 2014 in Charlotte and September 30, 2014 in DC. Check out 4thRight Dance choreography reel to get a feel for their work!

tcTriptych Collective


According to their website, the Triptych Collective is a group of performance artists interested in bringing a unique blend of live music, dance performance and visual art to non-traditional spaces in order to make thought-provoking and socially-engaged performance art more widely accessible.

The Collective received a Special Projects Grant from The Arts and Science Council to support the development of Telepresence (2011), a Cultural Projects Grant to develop Sown with the Body (2012) and a Special Projects Grant to develop Tangled Elsewhere featuring the music of Radiohead (2013). In 2014 the Collective received a Cultural Innovation Grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to develop “Poor Mouth” and “The Boundaries do not Hold”.

downloadTaproot Ensemble


According to their website, Taproot creates performance art that takes risks and has an honest, clear, fresh vision. The company strives for excellence in all things out of respect for our craft and those who have gone before us. Taproot is a collective of artists looking to revitalize communities through the use of unique and original performance pieces that reflect and challenge the communities within which they function. They create art by and for their communities under the influence of cultural concerns. Their work leaves room for the audience’s imagination, but toys with spectacle. Click here to view one of their pieces!

Charlotte Dance Festival



While not strictly a company, the Charlotte Dance Festival is an organization dedicated to connecting the uniquely diverse Charlotte community with local and national dance artists as a means to enhance cultural understanding. The Charlotte Dance Festival’s mission is to create an innovative dance festival that is open to all dance genres.  The festival presents a diverse blend of established and emerging dance artists in a variety of venue styles as a means to reach a larger audience.

September 19 – 21 the Charlotte Dance Festival will partner with Festival in the Park (FITP) again to organize great dance performances for youth and professionals. The Main Stage (professional groups and Pointe Pieces) performance  is Saturday, September 20 at 3pm – 4:30pm while the Youth Talent Stage (18 and under only) performance is Saturday, September 20 at 1pm – 2:30pm and 5pm – 6:30pm and Sunday, September 21 at 1pm – 2:30pm. Click Here to Complete the Application for a chance to perform on the Main Stage and Click Here to Complete the Application for the Youth Talent Stage. If you are new to performing on the Youth Talent Stage, they will need a youtube or vimeo link to view your works for approval. If you have anymore questions you may send an email to Applications are due August 15!

Please share this blog post will your fellow dancers to expand the North Carolina dance community. Also, we welcome comments and would love to hear your feedback! Let us know if there are any other Charlotte companies we have forgotten to mention. Look for our highlights of the Triad area dance companies next week!




Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 292 other followers

%d bloggers like this: