See Chicago Dance Critical Writing Fellowship
Information about the Fellowship:
In response to the need for new and emerging dance critics and emergent forms of dance writing, See Chicago Dance is opening a call for applications to anyone interested in writing about dance from a critical perspective.
Selected SCD dance writing fellows will participate in two writing intensives, consisting of workshops, practice, and feedback sessions in Summer and Fall of 2020.
Selected participants will complete a workshop led by SCD editor Lauren Warnecke, Columbia College associate professor of dance Dr. Raquel Monroe, and a diverse team of veteran Chicago writers.
Fellows will gather in a group environment to develop their critical writing skills for a variety of dance and movement-based performance genres. Fellows will convene for a series of two weekend sessions, each consisting of two 3-hour workshops leading them through fundamental principles of viewing, describing, analyzing and evaluating dance. We will also cover ethics, best practices for working with publicists and other PR professionals, and other industry-specific details surrounding the dance writing field.
After a group dinner, the cohort will attend a performance and, using the knowledge gained during the workshop, write a performance review that will be critiqued and discussed as a group the following day in another 3-hour session. Each cohort will have two rounds of workshops, performance viewing, and feedback, followed by mentored review and preview assignments during the fall dance season.
The workshops, writing practice and critical discussions will help develop each participant’s voice, develop and enhance their skills through real-time feedback, and provide historical and cultural context through independent research and a diverse range of guests and mentors.
Confirmed speakers and panelists:
- Bimbola Akinbola, Black Arts Initiative postdoctoral fellow, Northwestern University
- Jenai Cutcher, director, Chicago Dance History Project
- Sharon Hoyer, dance editor, Newcity Magazine
- Mario LaMothe, assistant professor of African-American Studies and Anthropology Diaspora Studies Cluster, University of Illinois at Chicago
- Lizzie Leopold, executive director, Dance Studies Association
- Kerry Reid, theater and dance editor, Chicago Reader
- Tal Rosenberg, senior editor, Chicago Magazine
- Rachel Russell, freelance dancer, teaching artist and writer
- Catey Sullivan, theater and dance critic, Chicago Sun-Times and Chicago Reader
- Tara Aisha Willis, associate curator of performance and public practice, Museum of Contemporary Art
Eligibility and Application Criteria:
The first cohort of SCD dance writing fellows will be announced in late March at the Chicago Dance Month kick-off event.
Eligible applicants needn’t have specific experience in dance, or dance writing, but should have some familiarity and interest with Chicago’s vibrant dance community and be able to demonstrate writing competence. The ideal candidate will have some experience in journalism, communications or criticism, though this is not a requirement. If you are interested in seeking college credit for your participation, please so state in your application.
Interested parties should send a cover letter, resume, and three writing samples to firstname.lastname@example.org. Included in the cover letter should be a statement regarding relevant experience, why you are interested in the fellowship, what you hope to gain through participation, and ability to be in Chicago during late August-October, 2020. No phone calls, please.
Two rounds of writing and workshop intensives, for a total of 12 hours not including performances and time spent writing independently. The summer intensive is tentatively planned for Aug. 15-16 and Aug. 22-23.
- Day 1: workshop 3 hrs plus dinner break, attend dance performance
- Day 2: AM write review on own time and then convene with group again in the afternoon for 2-3 hrs for feedback and discussion.
Select fellows may be asked to contribute to See Chicago Dance as freelance critics during the fall dance season, 2020. Please state your ability to work in Chicago at select times during the fall in your application.
All guest speakers, performance tickets, and mentorship are provided by See Chicago Dance at no cost to writing fellows. See Chicago Dance will provide one meal each day we gather. Fellows who are invited to write for the See Chicago Dance platform during the fall dance season will receive a stipend and some transportation costs for published work.