A Baltimore Dance Incubator Is Real / State Emergency Funding / Small Budget Dance Makers / Dance is a Weapon / Social Bonding

A Baltimore Dance Incubator

I’m pleased to announce that we (I couldn’t have done it alone…) have secured a commitment from the Southwest Partnership to “generate a design that meets the 21st century needs of the dance community” at the Lord Baltimore Theater.  Importantly, this is described as a “state-of-the-art incubator for dance.”

This process (at this building) began over a year ago, with the acquisition of the property by the Southwest Partnership in April 2019.  Many of you will also be aware that I’ve been deep into the economic, artistic, and practical gaps that exist for dance and movement arts in and around Baltimore city for much longer than that, so things may move quickly from here.

The immediate next steps involve identifying potential candidates to serve on the board of directors for a new non-profit organization, and raising a first round of funding to develop the design concept to a budget-able and fund-able stage. 

To that end, I have a few immediate requests:

  • Please let me know if you have any suggested candidate board members;
  • Please let me know what your specific hopes and expectations are – this is an incubator.  What do YOU need to create a nurturing, accessible, affordable, and “state of the art” facility?  I already have a lot to work with from the Baltimore Regional Dance Survey and previous engagements, but this is an opportunity to dream big and get very specific.  No promises that your dreams will come true, but… Please do express those dreams. Now is the time to get into the very specific details.
  • If you have any experience or wisdom to share about local funding organizations for dance or cultural facilities in and around Baltimore, I’d love to learn from you…

Thanks to everyone that attended the public meetings, indulged by sometimes oblique questions, and participated in the surveys and conversations.  This made a huge difference.

State Emergency Funding

Maryland’s Governor announced an $3 million expansion of the The Maryland State Arts Council Emergency Grant Program.  https://governor.maryland.gov/2020/10/22/governor-hogan-announces-250-million-maryland-strong-economic-recovery-initiative/

Small Budget Dance Makers

Dance/NYC released their “Defining ‘Small-Budget’ Dance Makers in a Changing Dance Ecology” report a couple weeks ago.  Find that here:  https://www.dance.nyc/programs/research/2020/10/Defining-Small-Budget-Dance-Makers-in-a-Changing-Dance-Ecology-Report/

Could Dance Be a Weapon All Over Again?

Gia Kourlas opines on the relevance of the New Dance Group in 2020 – https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/22/arts/dance/dance-future-pandemic.html

Ford Foundation Commitment to Dance

The Ford Foundation leads a $156 million commitment to support Black, Latinx, Asian and Indigenous Arts Organizations ( https://www.fordfound.org/the-latest/news/sixteen-major-donors-and-foundations-commit-unprecedented-156-million-to-support-black-latinx-asian-and-indigenous-arts-organizations/ ).  Dance figures prominently in this effort – of the 20 organizations selected, four are about dance – Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ballet Hispánico, Dance Theater of Harlem, Urban Bush Women (most are museums).

Moving Together and Social Bonds

From the October issue of Scientific American, an interesting piece… “Moving in Sync Creates Surprising Social Bonds among People” –

Please #BRDS2020 and bring friends to #BRDS2020 ( https://inthedancersstudio.com/brds2020 )
Please stay home.
Please keep dancing.
Please reach out to people directly and personally. They will miss seeing/dancing/working with you. I will miss you.
Simple acts of kindness do matter. Point out beauty when you can. Bring a little joy to someone.
If there is something I can do, please let me know.