Screening of Jenai Cutcher’s “Thinking on Their Feet: Women of the Tap Renaissance"

Wed Mar 21 2018 - 7:00pm

The Crown Center Auditorium

Thinking On Their Feet documents stories of women breaking racial, gender, and artistic boundaries, fighting to keep tap dance alive, and instigating what is now known as the Tap Renaissance.

Jenai Cutcher’s creative practice includes dancing, choreographing, teaching, and researching histories of dance to present in a variety of media. She has performed with tap dance artists such as Brenda Bufalino, Michelle Dorrance, Barbara Duffy, John Giffin, Savion Glover, Derick Grant, Max Pollak, and Lynn Schwab and her own choreography has been presented throughout the country. Jenai has written articles for several dance publications, papers for presentation, three dance books for children, and Columbus Moves: A Brief History of Contemporary Dance. Her first feature-length documentary, Thinking On Their Feet: Women of the Tap Renaissance, explores the work of the women who resurrected and revolutionized the art of American tap dance and continue to pioneer the field. Currently, Jenai serves as the Director of the Chicago Dance History Project and teaches at Northwestern University. She has a BA in English and MFA in Dance, both from The Ohio State University.


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Student Curated Event

Thu Mar 22 2018 - 7:00pm

Corboy Law Center 206

Come immerse yourself in the dance film world from an emerging artists’ perspective. Curated by students and new filmmakers, this event will be an exploration of new trends in the art form. Join us for screenings of work as well as a moderated discussion.

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Screening of Celia Rowlson-Hall’s “(The [End) of History Illusion]” & WORKS BY SARAH C PRINZ

Fri Mar 23 2018 - 12:00pm

Mundelein Studio 409

Please join us for a screening of celebrated dance filmmaker Celia Rowlson-Hall’s “The [End) of History Illusion]”. A discussion regarding this work and its relation to the current political climate will follow the screening.

Dancer/choreographer/filmmaker Celia Rowlson-Hall is best known for her iconic choreography in the hit TV show Girls, music videos by Alicia Keys and MGMT, dynamic shorts such as “The Audition” and “Prom Night”, and the 2015 feature, MA, a movement-driven narrative of the Virgin Mary’s pilgrimage. Regarding her latest work, Rowlson-Hall reflects, “I wanted to explore commercialism in the face of fear, creating a spectacle to distract and entertain - an escape from our present day reality”.


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International Dance Film Juried Screening  

Fri Mar 23 2018 -7:00pm

Damen Cinema

Enjoy a screening of selected international dance film shorts. Following the screening, The I/M Audience Choice Award, Social Justice Award, and Special Selection Grand Jury Award will be presented. Grand Jury panelists include dance writer and Arts Alliance Illinois Communications and Engagement Director, Zachary Whittenburg; Associate Curator of Performance at The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Tara Aisha Willis; Chicago Tribune Dance Critic, Lauren Warnecke; Executive Director of Full Spectrum Features, Eugene Park; and High Concept Labs Artist in Residence, Erin Kilmurray. 






International Dance Film Juried Screening After Party

Fri Mar 23 2018 - 9:00pm

Ireland's Pub 10

Please join us for sweet and savory bombas in celebration of our selected local, national & international Dance Filmmakers. Cash bar!








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Professional Gaga Class with Bobbi Jene Smith (ADD-ON EVENT)

Sat Mar 24 2018 -11:00am

Skowronski Music Hall

Former Batsheva dancer and independent performance artist Bobbi Jene Smith will teach a professional level Gaga class. The layering of familiar movements with Gaga tasks presents fresh challenges that prompt dancers to visit unfamiliar ways of moving. Gaga deepens dancers’ awareness of physical sensations, expands a palette of available movement options, enhances ability to modulate energy, engages explosive power, and enriches movement quality with a wide range of textures.









Local Artists Works-in-Progress Showing

Sat Mar 24 2018 - 2:00pm

Mundelein Studio 409

An afternoon of local artists’ works-in-progress showings and guided discussions led by Chicago Tribune Dance Critic, Lauren Warnecke. Presenters include AJ McClenon, Erica Mott, Mariel Harari, Kristina Isabelle, and Sara Zalek. Join us for an afternoon of creative discussion and a look inside artistic processes. 








Female Figures: Then and Now Panel and Reception (FREE EVENT!)

Sat Mar 24 2018 - 5:00pm

Klarchek Information Commons 4th Floor

Join us for an evening panel and reception with renown art advocates: Deana Haggag, CEO of United States Artists; internationally acclaimed movement artist, Bobbi Jene Smith; Princess Grace Foundation Award recipient and New City's Players: 50 People Who Really Perform for Chicago 2018, Robyn Mineko Williams, and Po’Chop / Jenn Freeman, burlesque + performance artist. A moderated conversation led by Chicago Dance History Project Director, Jenai Cutcher will center on panelists’ roles as female figures in the arts, female role models throughout history, professional insights to career choices, and the perceived history of women artists’ professional joys, triumphs, and challenges.





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Screening of Elvira Lind’s award-winning documentary Bobbi Jene and Q&A

Sat Mar 24 2018 - 7:30pm

Damen Cinema

After a decade of stardom in Israel, American dancer Bobbi Jene decides to leave behind her prominent position at the world-famous Batsheva Dance Company, as well as the love of her life, to return to the U.S. to create her own boundary breaking art. Tracking the personal and professional challenges that await her, Elvira Lind’s film lovingly and intimately documents the dilemmas and inevitable consequences of ambition. Bobbi Jene delves into what it takes for a woman to gain her own independence in the extremely competitive world of dance and to find self-fulfillment in the process.





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Physically Integrated dance workshop

Sun Mar 25 2018 - 10:00am

Mundelein Palm Court

Bobbi Jene Smith will lead a community dance class open to all movers. Special guests will include dancers from Hubbard Street Dance Chicago's Parkinson's Project. During the second portion of the workshop, Bobbi will create a performance piece with workshop participants to be documented on film. All are welcome to attend. ASL services will be provided. Co-sponsored by UIC/Bodies of Work, UIC Department of Disability and Human Development, and 3Arts.








Women’s Narratives Workshop with Robyn Mineko Williams

Sun Mar 25 2018 - 2:00pm

Mundelein Palm Court

A workshop and discussion on voicing women’s stories through movement narratives. She will guide the development of movement phrase work based on participants’ own stories around the question, “What does it mean to you to identify as a woman?”

Robyn Mineko Williams danced for River North Dance Chicago and was a member of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago for twelve seasons, during which she performed choreography by numerous renowned artists including Ohad Naharin, Jiri Kylian, William Forsythe and Johan Inger, and originated roles in new works by Jorma Elo, Sharon Eyal, Twyla Tharp and Lar Lubovitch, among others. She began making her own work in 2001 through Hubbard Street’s Inside/Out Choreographic Workshop and, in 2010, co-choreographed with Terence Marling Hubbard Street 2’s Harold and the Purple Crayon: A Dance Adventure, designed for young audiences. She has since created multiple premieres for Hubbard Street’s main company including the Art of Falling, a critically acclaimed, full evening production by the artists of The Second City and Hubbard Street and has made work for Charlotte Ballet, Grand Rapids Ballet, Groundworks Dance Theatre, Thodos Dance Chicago, Visceral Dance Chicago and The Nexus Project, presented at the Kennedy Center, the American Dance Festival, the Joyce Theater and other venues. Named one of Dance Magazine's “25 to Watch” for 2014, Williams was one of Northwest Dance Project’s 2012 International Choreography Competition winners, received a 2013 Princess Grace Choreographic Fellowship and was selected as an E-choreographer for Springboard Danse Montreal the same year. In 2015 she completed a Princess Grace Foundation–USA Works In Progress Residency at the Baryshnikov Arts Center and recently received a Choreography Mentorship Co-Commission Award from the Princess Grace Foundation–USA in support of Mariko's Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure, her second full-length children's program in collaboration with shadow puppetry performance collective, Manual Cinema. Williams was named "2016 Best of Chicago - Best Choreographer" by Chicago Mag and selected as one of NewCIty's Players: 50 People Who Really Perform for Chicago in 2016 and 2018. Her collaborative performance series, Undercover Episodes, is currently performed nationally.