A Dance Gap Experience at Bronx Artist Residency
In the fall of 2020; like every dance studio, school, performance group, etc., we were blindsided. Some dancers fled to the virtual world to create and console one another while others fled away from the online dance world.
As reality sunk in, Dance Gap Year, began receiving requests for dance program alternatives. We initially piloted our global dance hub platform of virtual classes and workshops. One particular dancer (who is now alumni of the program) was determined to take a gap year. She continued reaching out to us until finally, we decided to consider the idea. How can we design a live-in, create-in fully monitored dance pod during the pandemic?
We began considering what was required. Speaking to the Gap Year Association, reading up on state and federal guidelines, we finally decided to open up the application process, and sure enough! the applications came rolling in. There were so many people in need of an experience, human interaction, creative outlets and we found a way to pilot that idea.
January 2021, Pizarts launched the Bronx Artist Residency, creating a 5 dancer pod who live together for 3 months. The Director and Residential Advisor, including the 5 artists, share roughly 3,000 square feet of space to dance, rest and create. The residency has four studios, 2.5 bathrooms, two offices, an art space, and access to a private garden.
"This has been a roller coaster of an experience and I have to say I have needed the creative connection just as much as these outgoing artists." -Dominique [Executive Director]
Dancers Aspen Nell, Kiara Benejan-Curry, Helen Samuel, Maycee Skeen, and Arial Xiu-Pang collaborated over several weeks helping
each other create their independent projects. It is amazing the opportunity to switch roles from being in front of the camera and in the next moment behind the camera assisting with
production. So many elements must be considered when making dance films, organizing photo shoots, and curating a show.
Summer and Fall 2021 programs open.
This program is not about technique but more about community, collaboration, and creative freedom. There are so many dance programs out there and I am always happy to share them based on the dancer's needs. I feel confident that our program is so unique and services dancers that are in a pivotal moment in their personal and professional life. Our residency spends less time on traditional techniques and more time on approaches led by Pizarts teaching mentors located around the globe. We are proud to say our program is truly a global hub with teachers in Argentina, Japan, Uganda, Tanzania, California, Colorado, New York, Amsterdam, Taiwan, and Italy.
Homeowner volunteers of Harrod Avenue's Block Association.