Alliance of Artists Communities, Minding the Gap

David Johnston

I spent Friday morning at Dance/USA’s 2012 Dance Forum, a pre-conference event at APAP. This event was at the Hilton New York, so bright and early after a very late opera, I hit the forum.  There were a lot of folks there I wanted to reconnect with; many who we had worked with on “We Make Do: More Time is Better, but Budget is King,” released by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in late 2010.  Time to reconnect with many in the dance community, since for the last year we’ve been focused on the musicians’ residency program.

The nicest surprise of the morning, however, was the Alliance for Artists Communities’ April ’11 report, “Mind the Gap: Artist Residencies and Dance.” Caitlin Strokosch, their Executive Director, presented the findings in the Grand Ballroom at the Hilton.  This report came out in April 2011, but for some reason I had not sat down to read it.

Very gratifying to see “We Make Do”quoted liberally in the Alliance’s report. (Heck, we’re even footnoted!) But most gratifying is to see the issues we examined being carried even further by others in the field; the horrible undersourcing of dance-makers, lack of accessible, affordable space, and the need for real honest-to-goodness research and development time for these artists.

If you haven’t looked at it yet, take a minute to do so. It’s a brisk read and Analysis and Conclusions are worth your time.


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