Dance Dispatches Hosts Q&A with Jonathan Hollander, Founder and Artistic Director, Battery Dance – 8/30

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Dance Dispatches Hosts Q&A with Jonathan Hollander,


Founder and Artistic Director, Battery Dance
August 30, 2020

London-based Dance Dispatches presents a Q&A with Battery Dance Founder and Artistic Director Jonathan Hollander on Sunday, August 30, 2020 at 9am EDT on Facebook Live at facebook.com/events/808534026633518. The 30-minute event will be hosted by Dance Dispatches founder Alison Roberts-Tse.

378b4ffa-b9fd-4c9a-b81f-fc0255507047.jpg S.gif
Jonathan Hollander, left, at the opening of the Black Voices in Dance program that launched the Festival, with Danni Gee, right, Dance Curator, City Parks Foundation S.gif

With four virtual programs from the 39th Annual Battery Dance Festival still available for viewing before reaching their expiration date, the interview will afford a behind-the-scenes look at the organization of one of the world’s largest and first online dance festivals during the pandemic. During the Festival, 52 films were screened over the course of nine days, including 28 premieres from 19 countries. Themed evenings included World and U.S. film Premieres from the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Japan and North America. The centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which recognized the woman’s right to vote, served as a focus for a program by women choreographers. Works that focused on Black voices in dance, the resiliency of New York City and the Festival itself and a special program celebrating India’s Independence Day rounded out the Festival.

Established in 1982, the Battery Dance Festival (BDF) is New York City’s longest-running free public dance festival and one of its most wide-ranging. Its annual live audience of over 12,000 was tripled this year with the ability to attract viewers from the entire world

The Festival programming that is still available for viewing includes:

From Africa
youtube.com/watch?v=iB4egPEpY8g
Expires Aug. 30 (midnight EDT)

From North America
youtube.com/watch?v=mR1cTNSucC4
Expires Aug. 31 (midnight EDT)

From Battery Dance
youtube.com/watch?v=TUoFQY38gSY
Expires Sep. 1 (midnight EDT)

From NYC to NYC with Love
youtube.com/watch?v=Cz9xSd2LNXk
Expires Sep. 2 (midnight EDT)

Battery Dance launched Battery Dance TV on March 27, 2020 at batterydance.org/dancetv/ to provide free live dance classes and programming for the general public by Battery Dance and affiliated local and international artists through a regularly scheduled program. Faced with the cancellation of its New York City public school dance classes and the postponement of its State Department Nigeria tour, and with its popular dance studios closed, its staff members went into high gear (from living rooms and kitchens), creating online content. In its first four months, Battery Dance TV has had over 1 million views from people in 185 countries.

Sundays have featured a mixed schedule beginning with an interview program at 9am and noon hosted by Battery Dance’s Founder Jonathan Hollander,
Dance Diplomacy with Jonathan. He has brought together dancers, culture leaders and diplomats from the U.S. with their counterparts from North and South America, South Asia, Africa, Europe, Middle East and Asia Pacific Regions, examining how the pandemic is impacting them and sharing inspiration along with challenges. International guest artist classes and solo performances are presented later in the day at 2pm and 4pm respectively. Temporarily interrupted so as not to clash with its Festival, the interviews, solos and classes will recommence in September.

Battery Dance introduced Mindful Movement sessions for frontline healthcare workers in May and continues to offer 15-minute sessions several times per week. Improvisation and musical theater dance classes and special afternoon classes for kids are also extended as part of Battery Dance TV’s regularly scheduled offerings which include:

  • morning warmup/stretching/conditioning exercises to start your day off right
  • mid-day classes in contemporary dance with afro, ballet and jazz fusion elements
  • evening classes in varied ballroom styles
  • a daily 4pm short video by dancers performing in their living rooms or immediate neighborhoods

Battery Dance also plans to expand its distance learning and programming by including online classes in lighting and production design, and classes in arts administration and cultural diplomacy. In the future, the Company plans to add short performances by youth around the world who will create short dances based on a specific weekly theme suggested by the Company.

Morning Classes & Instructors
Flow – Vivake Khamsingsavath
Stretch & Strength – Mira Cook
Conditioning – Sean Scantlebury

Afternoon Contemporary Classes & Instructors
Jazz Fusion – Jill Linkowski
Ballet Fusion, Improv, and Musical Theatre – Bethany Mitchell
Storytelling & Repertoire – Hussein Smko
Afro Fusion – Sean Scantlebury

Evening Ballroom Classes & Instructor
Cha Cha, Salsa, Waltz, Fox Trot, Tango, Rumba, Swing – Razvan Stoian

ABOUT BATTERY DANCE
As one of America’s leading cultural ambassadors, Battery Dance connects the world through dance. The Company pursues artistic excellence and social relevance by creating vibrant new works, performing on the world’s stages, presenting dance in public spaces, serving the field of dance and teaching people of all ages with special attention to the disadvantaged and areas of conflict. Battery Dance is committed to enhancing the cultural vibrancy of its home community in New York City, extending programming throughout the U.S., and building bridges worldwide through international cultural exchange with programs in 70 countries to date. www.batterydance.org

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