Review: Cinematic ‘New Dances’ embraces the choreographic constraints of COVID

I sat down with Melissa Thodos in 2017 on the eve of Thodos Dance Chicago’s final performance. We talked about how Chicago dance had changed since she started her pick up group, Melissa Thodos & Dancers, in 1992. It had gotten harder to keep up with the day-to-day of running a full-time dance company. Thodos wanted to have more freedom to spend time with her kids. Funding was more difficult to come by. By folding the company, Thodos, in a way, returned to her roots, developing a new organizational structure centered more heavily on education and artist development.

Raks Inferno: BLM Solidarity + Pride Edition

At Raks Inferno, we've never been quiet about racial injustice, LGBTQ+ equality, or the fact that trans rights are human rights. It's personal: Most of us are LGBTQ+, and most of us are POC (specifically, Asian American).

We believe Black Lives Matter.

So this month we're partnering with Lighthouse Foundation - we're raising dollars to advance justice for Black LGBTQ+ people in Chicagoland. And we've featuring some incredible friends from Teatro ZinZanni and the Full Moon Jams.

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater Virtual Summer Dance Intensive

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater is adapting its Summer Dance Intensive (SDI) to a virtual format in 2020 to enable the program to continue while keeping students, staff, and community members safe and in compliance with the phases of reopening the city of Chicago and state of Illinois. The Youth Division session takes place July 6–17; the Pre-Professional Division session takes place July 20–31; and Mature H.O.T. Women takes place July 6–31.

Small and nimble Links Hall takes an extraordinary year in stride

Links Hall is a space that champions artists’ potential. The people who work at Links both respect and recognize individuals with innovative ideas and hold equity and inclusivity in high regard. From affordable studio rentals to the venue's ever-important fellowship programs, Links Hall has proved itself to be of great value to the arts community in Chicago. And in the face of everything that’s been thrown their way in the last year, they’re maintaining and improving on their value.  

New Dances 2020

New Dances 2020 is bringing dance to a whole new stage, coming to a screen near you! Celebrating twenty years under Thodos Dance Chicago and three years in partnership with DanceWorks Chicago, we are gathering in the spirit of creativity and in support of our commUNITY, celebrating ALL of Chicago's gifted movers and makers.

Mandala Makers Festival takes a contemporary approach to classical traditions, bringing awareness to new and emerging South Asian artists

If you’re looking to tap into the flavors of South Asian dance and music, Mandala South Asian Performing Arts delivers, and then some, by pushing beyond tradition to explore fusion forms of folk, contemporary and popular dance and music.

The Mandala Makers Festival was originally conceived as a way to promote the live interaction of South Asian arts practitioners through interdisciplinary collaboration. Forced by the COVID-19 pandemic to re-invent itself digitally, the festival adapted to a live-streaming format, called “Streamyard,” which will air June 13 and 14.

Dance for Hope

Five Master Teachers, Five Classes - Making a Difference

Ballet 5:8 is hosting a special series on Zoom featuring five master classes by Master Teachers from Pacific Northwest Ballet, Martha Graham Dance Company, and others. Learn from the best from wherever you are, and make a difference in our hurting world!

All proceeds will benefit nonprofit World Relief and their assistance to the most vulnerable affected by COVID-19 in the U.S. Recommended for dancers of intermediate-advanced level of ability, all ages welcome.

$15/class or $40/full series.

BPP Drive for Change

Banks Performance Project is hosting a Drive For Change to support the Black Community in Chicago. It is up to us to recognize the need in the community and take action!

Items needed:
- Canned Goods
- Pasta
- Rice
- Fruit/Vegetables
- Snacks
- Bottled Water
- Baby Formula/Baby Food
- Diapers/Wipes
- Feminine Products
- Hand Soap/Sanitizer
- Gloves
- Face Masks

Or any non-perishable / convenient store items that are considered a necessity.


Mandala Makers Festival

An all-new virtual festival showcasing emerging South Asian artists based in Chicago launching Saturday, June 13th. The festival is dedicated to showing the resilience and perspectives of creatives working critically through South Asian traditions and identities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mandala Makers Festival is a celebration of a range of voices and is an opportunity to increase the reach of individual work through solidarity and community."