The Black Artists Space to Create Residency is a pilot project offering three Black artists a residency at Modern Accord Depot in Accord, NY. Each will receive a two-week residency with unlimited access to a dance studio and full living space. Residency schedules will be determined by the individual needs of the artists, who will also receive a stipend of $2,000. New Dance Alliance (NDA) is offering this space for resting, dancing, creating, healing, grieving, laughing, and breathing. There is no expectation of production and artists will not have to present new work at the end of this residency. The artists were selected by a core team consisting of NDA staff and board members.
The residency project was created in response to current movements within the dance community and the movements they are building upon. As an artist services organization and presenter, NDA has been guided by the core question: What does it mean to center and support Black artists in this field? NDA understands the stark reality that Black people are currently navigating not one, but two pandemics: one is new, and one is 400 years old. Covid-19 and racism are both disproportionately affecting Black life. In light of this, “we wish to radically reimagine what it means to serve Black artists right now and to do so in the specific spirit of reparations,” says NDA Board President Fernando Maneca. “We call in abundance as we reimagine modes of leadership and hand over the keys to Black artists as a way to confront the scarcity mindset currently afflicting non-profit organizations.”
MAD studio, photo by Feinknopf Studio
Photo by Feinknopf Studio
Announcing our Residency Director: Angie Pittman
We are excited to announce that Angie Pittman has been hired as Residency Director. An NDA advisory board member since 2018, Pittman helped conceive of the residency project and will lead it into future iterations.
“While we are honored to offer this residency program, we understand that the ideas around it are not new and not ours,” says Pittman. “As a Black artist working with a white-led organization, I want to make sure we credit the countless Black, femme scholars and activists who have called for the equitable payment of Black folks. I also want to call attention to how Black artists have historically shaped our nation’s imagination, language, and humanity so we want to use this residency as a way to value and amplify that tremendous work.”
A Space for Black Dance Artists to Create in the Hudson Valley
“When the staff, leadership and advisory committee of the New Dance Alliance gathered to draft a letter in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, the group soon realized that words wouldn’t be enough to demonstrate the organization’s commitment to racial justice. “It became really apparent to us that, unless we were backing it up programmatically, whatever we were writing was hollow,” Fernando Maneca, the president of the Dance Alliance’s board, said in an interview.”
This pilot project was made possible by a generous contribution from an anonymous donor
New Dance Alliance stands in support of the Black community. NDA’s initial aims were to support an artistic community that has limited institutional resources and to provides that community with increased opportunities to share experimental works with the public.
We recognize our change is necessary and late. We promise to fight back against systemic racism in our own organization and help hold other arts organizations accountable. We will deepen the work of bringing forward the voices of black artists.
These are our first steps in working towards anti-racism. We will be instituting other initiatives in the near future.
Karen Bernard, ExecutiveDirector & Artist Fernando Maneca, Board President Staff: Julia Antinozzi, Olivia Palacios, Emily Goucher Board: Maja Lorkovic, David Shapiro, Lisa Parra Advisory Board: Tara Bernstein, Robert Knowles, Thea Little, Linda Meaney, Angie Pittman
Click to view all artist pages from May!Performance Mix Festival “The most elaborate festival of the unpredictable,” (The New York Times), is a jam-packed program of local, national, and international artists with new perspectives on how we experience dance. While the live, weeklong festival of experimental dance and performance has been canceled, we will honor the artists during a month-long digital initiative – Performance Mix Festival #34: Remotely Yours – a reimagined stay-at-home festival. Learn more >
LiftOff is an NDA program offering residencies and workshops in which performing artists develop the creative and business aspects of their work. The LiftOff Creative and Project Development Residencies and Workshops are facilitated by Karen Bernard, Artist, and Executive Director of New Dance Alliance and guests. Learn more >
Karen Bernard has a history of creating solo dances that challenge audiences to engage in a specific reality of everyday life issues contextualized into a heightened performative experience. Learn more >
All NDA Studio Programs are free. Learn more about our LiftOff, Satellite, Work Session and Black Artists Space to Create programs. Learn more >
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What artists are saying
New Dance Alliance brought me and my dance work several times to be part of the Performance Mix. I value how NDA continues to provide a place for experimentation through performing the work. I truly believe that the only ways I can understand what I am making as an artist is through how it is received, as well as how I send it to an audience. Without the audience, I am only in a studio, preparing. And…in showing work in the midst of other artists also taking these risks in presenting their pieces in an environment that encourages continued risk, we can transport each other to the next step we need to take to continue to make the piece/s. Here is reassurance that we are not in isolation, and we are not doing it for nothing. It does matter.
—K.J. Holmes, dance artist/actor/singer/educator (New York City)
New Dance Alliance
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New York, NY 10013