Dance on Camera Festival (February 12-16) returns to the Film Society of Lincoln Center with 20 features, 36 shorts, four retrospective selections, and exciting free panels. The 44th edition of the festival marks two landmark occasions: the 60th anniversary of the founding of Dance Films Association, which co-presents the festival with the Film Society of Lincoln Center, and the 20th anniversary of the partnership between the two arts organizations on this unique event.
This year’s edition presents audiences with the worlds of ballet, jazz, and contemporary dance; modern and postmodern legends and discoveries, such as the focus of the Closing Night film, Jack Walsh’s Feelings Are Facts: The Life of Yvonne Rainer; flamenco in gypsy enclaves as well as explorations into artistic expression and innovative therapy; and stories from countries where women choose to dance despite a cultural bias against it; and, in addition to spotlighting the more traditional forms of dance, the lineup also delves into the exciting world of trapeze—known as “ballet of the air”—in the Opening Night film, Tom Moore’s The Flight Fantastic.
“Celebrating dance in all its many shapes and colors is this festival’s mantra,” said Joanna Ney, co-curator, with Liz Wolff, of the 44th edition. “Diversity, passion, and commitment are, as ever, the watchwords of Dance on Camera Festival. From Carmen Amaya’s legacy as seen in her progeny in Bajarí to a remote corner of Québec where a dancing school offers life lessons, to Horizons, a salute to Cuba’s love affair with ballet, the accent is on maintaining tradition as well as looking to the future.”
“Dance on Camera Festival allows for a legacy in dance to be honored and preserved, and this year we highlight this with some of the great male dancers and pioneers: Ted Shawn in The Men Who Danced, Eugene Louis “Luigi” Faccuito in a panel discussion Luigi: Hollywood, Broadway, and Beyond, and Alvin Ailey in Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance. Their accomplishments and innovation have formed generations of great dancers,” said Liz Wolff.
Highlights of this year’s lineup include appearances by legendary ballerinas Natalia Makarova (Kirov, ABT, Royal & freelance) and Merrill Ashley (NYCB for 30 years); a tribute to the great jazz innovator Luigi (Faccuito) and a screening of Vincente Minnelli’s classic American musical The Band Wagon; Meet the Artist with award-winning choreographer Pat Birch; a screening of Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance – Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater followed by a Q&A with special guests; and an advance screening of German Kral’s Our Last Tango, featuring Maria Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes, tango’s explosive partnership that ignited audiences for over 40 years.
This year’s retrospective offerings include Bessie: A Portrait of Bessie Schonberg about the inspiring mentor and teacher; The Men Who Danced, the story of Jacob’s Pillow founder Ted Shawn and his original all-male troupe; and Lar Lubovitch at Jacob’s Pillow, featuring the choreographer and some of his signature works.
Tickets go on sale Tuesday, January 12. A pre-sale to Film Society and Dance Films Association members begins Thursday, January 7. A discount package and an all-access pass will be available.
The Flight Fantastic
Tom Moore, USA, 2015, DCP, 98m
This fascinating look at the world of the flying trapeze centers on one of its greatest acts of all time, The Flying Gaonas. First performing on a trampoline, the Gaonas went on to become a star attraction for the best circuses in the world, including Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey. Director Tom Moore brings their story to life through interviews with family members and colorful archival material gleaned from a variety of sources. The Gaonas light up the screen with their charismatic personalities as we see them pass the torch on to new generations through teaching and coaching. New York Premiere
Love Songs for Robots
Chris Lavis & Maciek Szczerbowski, Canada, 2015, digital projection, 4m
Inspired by the ballet and sculpture of avant-garde artist Oskar Schlemmer, and featuring performances and choreography by Mistaya Hemingway (La La La Human Steps), Love Songs for Robots is an attempt to create the sort of film Martians might make for humans. New York Premiere
Friday, February 12, 8:00pm (Q&A with Tom Moore, Tito Gaona, and Chela Gaona)
Feelings Are Facts: The Life of Yvonne Rainer
Jack Walsh, USA, 2015, DCP, 82m
In the 1960s, Yvonne Rainer revolutionized modern dance as a co-founder of Judson Dance Theater. There, she introduced everyday movements into the dance lexicon, creating “Trio A” and other influential pieces that initially left audiences perplexed but inspired a devoted following. In the ’70s and ’80s, Rainer turned to film, introducing narrative techniques to avant-garde works and consequently turning the genre on its head. This revealing documentary is her story. From her bohemian upbringing to her private and public life as a radical artist, Rainer broke all the rules and created new ones only to reinvent herself time and time again. At 80 years old, she still looks at dance with an explorer’s heart, choreographing pieces that continue to defy assumptions about art and performance.
Mike Kirsch, USA, 2014, digital projection, 4m
Imagine not being able to hold hands, link arms, kiss, or even touch the person you love for fear of disapproval. Mike Kirsch explores this idea as it plays out in the LGBT community, where self-censorship is an everyday reality. New York Premiere
Tuesday, February 16, 8:00pm (Q&A with Yvonne Rainer and Jack Walsh)
After the Curtain
Emelie Mahdavian, USA, 2015, digital projection, 70m
Russian, Tajik, and Shugni in English subtitles
In Emelie Mahdavian’s After the Curtain, four female dancers battle shifting cultural norms and face increasing disfavor in the Post-Soviet, predominantly Muslim nation of Tajikistan. The women weigh their love of art against economic hardship, loneliness, and social reproach in this intimate portrait, which also celebrates the rich dance and music culture of a Central Asian country largely unknown in the West. World Premiere
Plow Plant Reap
Marta Renzi, USA, 2015, digital projection, 13m
Against a majestic landscape of rolling farmlands, an all-female community comes together to join in a baptism and a roundelay. With hints of Appalachian Spring and Amish customs, the piece is performed by members of the Slippery Rock University dance department. New York Premiere
Tuesday, February 16, 3:30pm (Q&A with Emelie Mahdavian)
Eva Vila, Catalonia/Spain, 2013, DCP, 84m
Spanish with English subtitles
Flamenco is passed down along the family in the gypsy community that gave us the icon Carmen Amaya. Carmen’s spirit hovers over the extended family bearing her name—true relatives and adopted “cousins” passionate about their music and dance. The flamenco odyssey begins when Carmen’s grandniece Karime arrives in Barcelona in search of her roots. When her mother Mercedes Amaya (“Winny”) joins Karime from Mexico to put on a show with some of the city’s musical talent, they discover the spirit of Bajarí—the word for Barcelona in Caló, the language of the gypsies. New York Premiere
Saturday, February 13, 6:00pm (Q&A with Eva Vila) Director’s appearance made possible with the generous support of the Institut Ramon Llull.
Ballerina: Program 1, “Body and Soul”
Derek Bailey, UK, 1987, Digibeta, 63m
Natalia Makarova is considered one of the great ballerinas of her time, whose flawless Kirov Ballet training made her a role model for future dancers. Dance on Camera Festival celebrates her 75th year by presenting “Body and Soul,” the first segment of the Emmy-nominated Ballerina series that she conceived, wrote, and narrated for BBC TV. Unseen for many years, the four-part documentary, from which Program 1 will be shown, examines the qualities that define a true ballerina, with Makarova sharing rare footage of legendary figures Maya Plisetskaya, Margot Fonteyn, Carla Fracci, and the remarkable Sylvie Guillem when she first joined the Paris Opera Ballet. Choreographers Frederick Ashton, Jerome Robbins, and Maurice Bejart provide additional commentary.
Excerpts from Makarova’s personal archive, including selections from her signature roles in Onegin, Manon, Swan Lake, and more. (Digibeta, 20m)
Saturday, February 13, 3:15pm (Followed by an onstage appearance by Natalia Makarova)
The Band Wagon
Vincente Minnelli, USA, 1953, 35mm, 112m
One of the greatest musicals of all time, Vincente Minnelli’s The Band Wagon features stunning choreography by Michael Kidd, including the memorable “Dancing in the Dark” sequence in Central Park, and a clever script by Betty Comden and Adolph Green. The film centers on a musical movie star (Fred Astaire) who fears his career is about to hit the skids, until two friends (Oscar Levant and Nanette Fabray) write a script for him that becomes Broadway-bound. But just as things begin to look promising, an egotistical director (Jack Buchanan) joins the project and casts ballerina Gaby Gerard (Cyd Charisse) as the leading lady. Tensions rise between the two co-stars, who clash immediately and whose temperaments threaten to capsize the show.
Sunday, February 14, 8:00pm
Bessie: A Portrait of Bessie Schonberg
Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, USA, 1998, digital projection, 58m
Bessie Schonberg danced with Martha Graham until a knee injury forced her to quit and turn to teaching. For the next 70 years, her passion for dance inspired and challenged many important dancers and choreographers, including Merce Cunningham, Jerome Robbins, Meredith Monk, Lucinda Childs, and Ronald K. Brown. The prestigious New York Dance and Performance Awards, informally known as the Bessie Awards, was named in her honor. Bessie narrates her own incredible story in Chris Hegedus and D.A. Pennebaker’s documentary, which is intercut with personal and archival footage that includes her teaching choreography at Juilliard, Dance Theater Workshop, and Jacob’s Pillow.
Sue Healey, Australia, 2015, DCP, 34m
The GOLDs (Growing Old Disgracefully) are a group of lively Australians, aged 60 to 90 years, who, after retiring from a range of careers, now live to dance. Despite their aging bodies, The GOLDs demonstrate what works for them: dancing together and exercising their desire to continue learning. U.S. Premiere
Monday, February 15, 1:00pm (Q&A with D.A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus)
Dance Emergency / Damhsa na heigeandala
Deirdre Mulrooney, Ireland, 2014, DCP, 52m
Irish with English subtitles
A forgotten chapter of modern dance history is revealed in Deirdre Mulrooney’s account of Erina Brady, an Irish-German dancer who shortly before World War II brought German expressionist modern dance (Ausdruckstanz) to a conservative, neutral Ireland. There, Brady, the daughter of a former Irish priest who was initially mistaken for a Nazi spy, opened a dance school to teach the Mary Wigman technique. Her dramatic story, framed within the context of Ireland’s thriving contemporary dance scene, comes to life with scenes reenacted by the brilliant Olwen Fouéré, and choreographed by Jessica Kennedy. North American Premiere
The Birch Grove
Gabrielle Lansner, USA, 2015, DCP, 21m
In this film about the power of family ties, inspired by the eponymous novella by Polish author Jaroslaw Iwaszkiewicz, two brothers caught between love and death wrestle with their past in a dance toward reconciliation.
Friday, February 12, 6:00pm (Q&A with Deirdre Mulrooney) Director’s appearance made possible with the generous support of Culture Ireland.
The Dance Goodbye
Ron Steinman, USA, 2015, digital projection, 56m
Merrill Ashley is remembered as one of New York City Ballet’s reigning ballerinas—a leading interpreter of Balanchine roles famous for her racehorse speed and purity of style. After 30 years with the company, Ashley retired in 1997, having sustained numerous injuries during her tenure. Ron Steinman’s candid portrait raises the question, “What next?”—a dilemma so many dancers face when the body no longer works to their standards. The documentary catches Ashley in career crisis as she copes with her loss and plans her next steps, making her way from a farewell performance to rounds of doctors’ appointments, workouts, and teaching duties. A voyage of self-discovery with the ballerina as guide, The Dance Goodbye Is a treasure trove of personal photos and performance videos that bring a brilliant career to vivid life. A First Run Features release. World Premiere
Loughlan Prior, New Zealand, 2014, DCP, 13m
A dance narrative set against the backdrop of New Zealand’s coastline, Loughlan Prior’s David features two parallel storylines that examine the title character’s young life and those he has come to share it with. U.S. Premiere
Sunday, February 14, 6:00pm (Q&A with Merrill Ashley, Ron Steinman, and Eileen Douglas)
Dance with Them
Béatriz Mediavilla, Canada, 2014, digital projection, 94m
French with English subtitles
Located in a remote corner of rural Quebec, the PRELV dance school has been run by choreographer Lynn Vaillancourt for 45 years. Employing a unique approach, she teaches singing and many forms of dance, to her students—aged 4 to 20—and also offers them important life lessons, on such subjects as the spirit of cooperation and mutual respect. A black-and-white charmer, Dance with Them is full of humor and dramatic incidents involving children and teenagers on their way to young adulthood. U.S. Premiere
Tuesday, February 16, 1:00pm (Q&A with Béatriz Mediavilla)
Alejandro Alvarez & Ulrik Wivel, Denmark, 2014, DCP, 52m
Spanish with English subtitles
After transforming Madrid’s Compañía Nacional de Danza into one of the most successful dance companies in the world, Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato is fired. Soon after, Russian billionaire Vladimir Kekhman lures Duato to St. Petersburg and puts the international contemporary dance icon in charge of a major classical ballet company, making him the first foreigner to do so in over 100 years. In this revelatory documentary about an artist in transition, Duato accepts the challenge of modernizing the traditionalist Russian troupe, even as it plunges him into cultural and social isolation. U.S. Premiere
TACTUM: Elements of Dance
Krzysztof Stasiak, Poland, 2015, digital projection, 28m
Polish with English subtitles
According to Ayurveda, the Hindu science of health and medicine, there are three forces that give color to our existence: Green (Kapha), a combination of the elements of water and earth;Red (Pitta), of fire and water; and Blue (Vata), of air and ether. Inspired by this philosophy, director Krzysztof Stasiak opens a window to an imaginary world as well as to the creation of a series of dances charged with emotion and infused with serenity. U.S. Premiere
Friday, February 12, 3:30pm (Q&A with Alejandro Alvarez)
Enter the Faun
Tamar Rogoff & Daisy Wright, USA, 2014, digital projection, 68m
In Tamar Rogoff and Daisy Wright’s documentary, an unlikely collaboration between a veteran choreographer and a young actor with cerebral palsy delivers astonishing proof that everyone is capable of miraculous transformation. As Rogoff trains Gregg Mozgala to dance in her performance, the two discover that her lack of formal medical training and his fears and physical limitations are not obstacles but the impetus for her choreography and their unprecedented discoveries. Enter the Faun is the story of a joyous, obsessed journey toward opening night, challenging the boundaries of medicine and art as well as the limitations associated with disability.
Martiality, Not Fighting
Marianne M. Kim & Cheng-Chieh Yu, China, 2012, digital projection, 10m
Martiality, Not Fighting follows a young Chinese dancer performing the role of conscientious objector. Moving through the pedestrian and the abstract, he reflects on the question “to fight or not to fight.” The choreography is infused with images drawn from postmodern dance as well as the martial art Ba Gua Zhang. New York Premiere
Sunday, February 14, 3:15pm (Q&A with Tamar Rogoff and Daisy Wright)
Horizons / Horizontes
Eileen Hofer, Switzerland, 2015, DCP, 71m
Spanish with English subtitles
Since its founding, the National Ballet of Cuba has produced many remarkable dancers. Eileen Hofer’s film focuses on three generations of Cuban-born dancers who demonstrate their love and passion for ballet: legend and local hero Alicia Alonso, now 93, the prima ballerina assoluta who founded the classical ballet company; Viengsay Valdes, a rising star; and young Amanda, who dreams of being accepted to the company’s prestigious school. Interweaving their stories as if with an impressionist painter’s brush, Hofer creates a portrait of three exceptional women for whom their native soil is a source of pride, despite the hardships they endure. Archival footage of Alonso in her prime poignantly contrasts with the frail nonagenarian who can still rise to the occasion. New York Premiere
Kathy Rose, USA, 2015, digital projection, 3m
Kathy Rose’s Cubano Bas shows a mysterious rite with poetic music by Greg Boyer. New York Premiere
Saturday, February 13, 1:00pm
Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance – Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Matthew Diamond, USA, 2015, DCP, 104m
You don’t just see an Ailey performance, you feel it. And now you can experience the astounding Ailey dancers in an even deeper way as they make their big-screen debut. The program of four audience favorites includes: Wayne McGregor’s sumptuous Chroma, with a score by Jack White and Joby Talbot; Ronald K. Brown’s powerful Grace, with music by Duke Ellington, Roy Davis Jr., and Fela Kuti; artistic director Robert Battle’s humorous, high-flying Takademe; and Alvin Ailey’s beloved masterpiece, Revelations, which will rock your soul.
Panelists will include Emily Rasmussen, Producer of Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance; Alex Sarian, Director of Business Development & Operations at Lincoln Center Education; and Eduardo Vilaro, Artistic Director of Ballet Hispanico.
Monday, February 15, 6:00pm (Q&A with Matthew Diamond, Bennet Rink, and Andrew Wilk)
The Men Who Danced: The Story of Ted Shawn’s Men Dancers and the Birth of Jacob’s Pillow 1933-1940
Ron Honsa, USA, 1985, Digibeta, 30m
The Men Who Danced tells the story of modern-dance pioneer and Jacob’s Pillow founder Ted Shawn, and his mission to create an all-male dance company. Featuring interviews with eight of the original Denishawn Dancers and rarely seen footage of the company performing in the 1930s, Ron Honsa’s documentary provides powerful insight into the early days of Jacob’s Pillow and the determination and strength of character needed to build a world-renowned dance institution.
Lar Lubovitch at Jacob’s Pillow
Lawrence Ott, USA, 1981, DCP, 24m
Made to promote the Lar Lubovitch Company abroad, Lawrence Ott’s “time capsule” documentary—rarely screened in the past 35 years—features footage of signature repertory works including “Exsultate Jubilate,” “Marimba,” “Beau Danube,” and “Cavalcade,” featuring the dancers Peggy Baker, Rob Besserer, and Doug Varone. The choreographer himself appears in interview segments as well as scenes depicting him at work in the studio.
Sunday, February 14, 1:00pm (Moderated discussion with Norton Owen and Ron Honsa)
Our Last Tango
German Kral, Germany/Argentina, 2015, DCP, 84m
Spanish with English subtitles
Our Last Tango is a love story involving perhaps the most famous couple in tango history and their shared passion for the partnered dance. Now in their eighties, María Nieves Rego and Juan Carlos Copes met when they were 14 and 17, respectively, and have danced together for nearly 50 years, memorably in the Broadway smash hit Tango Argentino. Off the dance floor, they loved and hated each other in equal measure, broke up and reunited, but always generated sparks as performing partners. Now toward the end of their lives, the pair share their tempestuous personal history with a group of young tango dancers and choreographers in Buenos Aires, who transform the couple’s personal drama into sizzling dance numbers. Soul-searching interviews and documentary highlights create an unforgettable odyssey into the heart of tango. A Strand Releasing release. U.S. Premiere
Monday, February 15, 8:30pm
T.M. Rives, USA, 2015, digital projection, 59m
T.M. Rives’s documentary follows Swedish choreographer Alexander Ekman during the development of his new Swan Lake production for the Norwegian National Ballet. Rarely has there been such intimate access to the creative process; viewers are offered interviews with the opera house’s army of artists and workers as they construct costumes, sets, and even a lake on which the intrepid dancers rehearse, splashing and sliding. Every aspect of this unique production is documented, including the composition of a new score. As challenges mount, the choreographer maintains a playful mood that keeps everything humming when it is not collapsing. While the final performance is unseen, Ekman’s Swan Lake was a triumph and nominated for the Prix Benois de la Danse in 2014. New York Premiere
Dunja Jocic & Marinus Groothof, Netherlands, 2015, DCP, 17m
Dunja Jocic and Marinus Groothof’s short tells the story of a young boy’s relationship to his pet bird and to his opera diva mother, who leaves him on his own to play, dream, and possibly get into trouble. New York Premiere
Friday, February 12, 1:30pm
They Are We
Emma Christopher, Australia/Sierra Leone/Cuba, 2014, digital projection, 77m
Spanish, Mende, Krio, Gbande, and Kono with English subtitles
In Central Cuba, the Afro-Cuban ethnic group Ganga-Longoba have kept their African heritage alive in distinct song and dance despite their separation from ancestors by decades of slavery, revolution, and religious persecution. Anthropologist and director Emma Christopher films their music, while traveling across Sierra Leone, and shows people the footage to capture their recognition. In a village without road access, one African looks in wonder and says, “They are we.” Music, dance, and interviews reunite the men and women living in Cuba with their Sierra Leone kin in an overdue celebration of their shared history. An Icarus Films release.
Je suis un Cheval / I am a Horse
Esther Baker-Tarpaga, USA, 2014, digital projection, 12m
In this unique collaboration between dancer/choreographer Ibrahim Zongo and his horse Sabak, the two are filmed along the streets of Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, in a duet of incomparable beauty. World Premiere
Monday, February 15, 3:15pm (Q&A with Emma Christopher)
Shorts Program I (TRT: 67m)
The short form continues to gain ground as the ideal platform for exploring the relationship between dance and film. This year’s Short Film programs are currently stretching the boundaries of the art form. The selection includes the concrete and the abstract and reveals that filmmakers and choreographers are partnering in exciting new ways.
Saturday, February 13, 8:00pm
A Tap Dance in a Circle
Danny Gardner, USA, 2015, DCP, 3m
The Tap Stalker strikes again, this time meeting his unassuming friend on the pier and making him tap dance in a circle… in one take! World Premiere
Mitchell Rose, USA, 2015, DCP, 4m
A sci-fi aerial dance film glimpses a dark future where spambot drones chase a fleeing populace and blast ads for Viagra, hair-loss products, and other exciting values. New York Premiere
Chris Rogy, Cambodia, 2014, DCP, 7m
In Hindu mythology, Aspara is a female dancer, here depicted as peacemaker who delivers a message to the people of Cambodia, a country beset by violence.
Pablo Diconca, Canada, 2015, DCP, 6m
Drifting on a raft, a man and a woman dance instinctively and choose the only possible escape.
New York Premiere
The Song of GuQin – Chinese Ink
Alex Wu (Zhen Wu), China, 2015, DCP, 5m
Chinese classical dance is rendered through stunning ink-wash drawings in this part of a series honoring ancient Chinese culture and tradition. World Premiere
Tebe Tasi / Sea Dance
David Palazón, Timor-Leste, 2013, DCP, 9m
Tebe Tasi is a visual interpretation of “Itinerary for a landscape, a symphonic poem” performed by the Orquestra Sinfónica de Radiodifusão Portuguesa, conducted by Leonardo Barros, and recorded from a radio broadcasting in 1983 for the album Symphonic Works by Simão Barreto. U.S. Premiere
Indigo Grey: The Passage
Sean Robinson, USA, 2015, DCP, 6m
A young boy discovers a mysterious gas mask that provides a glimpse into an alternate reality.
Andrea Ward, USA, 2015, DCP, 3m
Still Light explores the ways in which movement potential and choreographic ideas underwater can differ from those on the ground, touching on concepts of weight and suspension.
Marta Renzi, USA, 2015, DCP, 6m
Exotic and erotic, playful and provocative, this duet inspired by the Kama Sutra exposes plenty but never takes itself too seriously. New York Premiere
Drew Cox & Antoine Marc, UK, 2015, DCP, 5m
A man is inhabited by memories and visions as he approaches his final hours. New York Premiere
Approaching the Puddle
Sebastian Gimmel, Germany, 2015, DCP, 9m
A curious woman, appropriately dressed for a rainy day, explores her environment in an empty parking lot. New York Premiere
A Portrait of Marc Brew
Jamiel Laurence & Lewis Landini, Scotland, 2015, DCP, 6m
A light, bright portrait of a choreographer and teacher whose dance vocabulary finds beauty in restricted movement. New York Premiere
Shorts Program II – Experimental Shorts (TRT: 66m)
Tuesday, February 16, 6:00pm
Pooh Kaye, USA, 2013, DCP, 8m
Director Pooh Kaye’s alter ego, Alexandra, struggles with garden machinery and scrambles in the dirt as she pursues her dream of a backyard duck pond. As she launches her boat, magical events sweep her off course.
Nellie Carrier, Canada, 2015, DCP, 9m
Four characters see their destiny in free fall. New York Premiere
Mortified: The Contender
Jacob Stage, Camilla Singh & Jenn Goodwin, Canada, 2015, DCP, 6m
Two women become immersed in their emotional responses to a combative world. Adopting the format of a band to encompass a range of activities, the film creates a sonic experience through movement and mayhem. New York Premiere
The Song of GuQin – Hand Dance
Alex Wu (Zhen Wu), China, 2015, DCP, 5m
From The Song of GuQin series, this segment shows the beauty of hand dance. New York Premiere
Gregory Bennett & Jennifer Nikolai, New Zealand, 2015, DCP, 4m
A dance and motion-capture collaboration, this film explores choreographic prompts and improvisation using 3-D motion-capture technology. The live dancer is inscribed into a 3-D visualization, which references both drawing practice and experimental animation–particularly Len Lye and Norman McLaren and their studies in moving image and sound. New York Premiere
Dance of the Neurons
Jody Oberfelder & Eric Siegel, USA, 2015, DCP, 5m
Twenty-four dancers embody the birth of neurons, activating the brain and body. Created in consultation with leading neuroscientists.
Martian Mating Moves
Eva Ingolf, USA, 2015, DCP, 2m
A short introduction to the mating habits of Martians. World Premiere
Snags in Palladio
Michele Manzini, Italy, 2015, DCP, 6m,
A series of moving tableaux that reflect the Platonic idea of supreme beauty, as well as its contradictory nature in the modern world. New York Premiere
Augenblick, Italy, 2014, DCP, 1m
A tailor and his wife. A day like any other: old and new customers, one after another. Then she enters. Suddenly a glimpse, a mistake… and there’s already a stitch to remove: one more word and the elbows will lightly touch. New York Premiere
Wilkie Branson, UK, 2015, DCP, 7m
A dance animation about dreams, fears, and aspirations made with over 4,000 hand-cut characters. New York Premiere
Galen Bremer, Emma Hoette & Zoe Rabinowitz, USA, 2015, DCP, 4m
On a gray day, a weathered sculpture in a public space may go unnoticed if not for the figures weaving through it. Are these two women, or one? The mystery of their circumstances ignites a curiosity for the anonymous subject. World Premiere
The Fallen Circus
Shelly Love, UK, 2015, DCP, 10m
Agnes falls from the sky, landing at the feet of a friendly juggler who tells her the story of “The Fallen Circus.” She explains that her mother was blown away by a big gust of wind and together they set off on a journey to find her. U.S. Premiere
Dance and Education in New York City High Schools:
Nel Shelby, USA, 2015, digital projection, 53m
Step inside the halls of five NYC public schools and celebrate dance! Narrated by veteran TV journalist Paula Zahn, PS Dance! is a documentary that captures what happens when students have dance in their curriculum. The journey is one of imagination, curiosity, hard work, and discipline. In these studios, dance is for every child. Created by award-winning dance filmmaker Nel Shelby, dance ambassador Jody Gottfried Arnhold, and dance education consultant Joan Finkelstein. Preceded by a screening featuring the finalists from Capturing Motion NYC, Dance Films Association’s workshop and film competition program for high-school students throughout the five boroughs. (Moderated discussion by DFA’s Vice President and Chair of Education Paul Galando with Jody Gottfried Arnhold, who is honored by Dance Films Association with a 2016 Dance in Focus Award for her exceptional contributions to the dance community through education, advocacy, and groundbreaking support of dance film.) The discussion will include a panel made up of dance filmmakers, educators, and program innovators.
Saturday, February 13, 11:00am
Dance Films Builds an Archive: DFA Member Meet Up! – Free Furman Gallery Event!
In celebration of Dance Films Association’s 60th anniversary, join us for the release of the preliminary results of our recent item level inventory and stories from the organization’s vault. Filmmakers, historians, curators, librarians, programmers, and dance and film enthusiasts alike are encouraged to attend and bring their own stories in seeking, providing, and using archival material.
Sunday, February 14, 12:00pm
Venue: Furman Gallery, 165 West 65th Street
Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance – Free Amphitheater Event!
Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance launched in the fall of 2015, distributing recorded live performances of Alvin Ailey, Ballet Hispanico, New York City Ballet, and San Francisco Ballet to more than 600 movie theaters nationwide. Join lead creatives and partners for an in-depth conversation on a transmedia approach to presenting dance in order to “bring incomparable performances representing a diverse range of American dance to audiences everywhere.”
Monday, February 15, 5:00pm
Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
Luigi: Hollywood, Broadway, and Beyond
Celebrate one of jazz technique’s great innovators, Eugene Louis “Luigi” Faccuito, with a discussion with Francis Roach, who has taught Luigi technique for over 20 years. After a devastating accident, Luigi created an exercise for his own rehabilitation, which became the first complete technique for learning jazz dance. Luigi’s talent and perseverance gave him the opportunity to work in every part of show business, from burlesque to Hollywood musicals, Broadway, and beyond.
Sunday, February 14, 5:00pm
Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
Meet the Artist With Pat Birch – Free Amphitheater Event!
Honored by Dance Films Association with the 2016 Dance in Focus award, the two-time Emmy Award-winning and five-time Tony nominated choreographer Pat Birch, perhaps best known for being the mastermind behind the hand jive in the film Grease, joins Dance on Camera Festival for Meet the Artist to share insight into her sensational career as one of the most celebrated choreographers for the screen.
Friday, February 12, 5:00pm*
*Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
Teaching Screendance: Creating a Practice-Based Pedagogy – Free Amphitheater Event!
Inspired by the hybrid practices of filmmakers Douglas Rosenberg and Katrina McPherson, this open forum focuses on ways in which the practice of screendance—in the context of a theoretical and historical framework—can lead to a pedagogy for teaching the dance genre made for the camera. Rosenberg and McPherson will lead the discussion.
Monday, February 15, 12:00pm
Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
Work-In-Progress Screening – Free Amphitheater Event!
Centered on process and discussion, this year’s Work-In-Progress screening will feature The Other Side of Stillness by Alexx Shilling | alexx makes dances, selected from Dance Films Association’s Production Grant application pool. Moderated by Yara Travieso, an award-winning multimedia director, choreographer, and filmmaker.
Saturday, February 13, 5:00pm
Venue: Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, 144 West 65th Street
Art Exhibit – Furman Gallery:
Jordan Matter: A Matter of Dance
Jordan Matter, a Manhattan-based portrait photographer selected as one of 2014’s “Top Emerging Artists” by Art Business News is the author of The New York Times best seller and international phenomenon, Dancers Among Us (Workman Publishing). The book is a collection of photographs of dancers in everyday situations around the world. O, The Oprah Magazine, Barnes & Noble, NPR, and Amazon selected it as a “Best Book,” and it has been reprinted eight times in five countries. Matter and his work have been featured on television, and in print and exhibitions throughout the world, including Reddit, Buzzfeed, ABC World News, The Today Show, the BBC, The New York Times, The Huffington Post, The Tyra Banks Show, the Hudson River Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Seoul, Korea (with two solo shows in two years). He is currently working on his follow-up book, Dancers After Dark (Workman Publishing, 2016), featuring a series of public nudes at night meant to highlight the incredible dedication and vulnerability it takes to pursue a dance career. Selections from both projects will be on display.