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Call it a “dancer bucket list” of sorts. Our contributors say these are the places all dancers should visit in the New Year. Of course, we’re recommending you go once we are no longer suffering from the pandemic. This gives you plenty of time to plan your trips.

in Akron, Ohio

Founded in 2015, the NCC provides resources for dance makers to “think, create and be inspired.” Offering research opportunities, space, and other resources, this incubator space at the University of Akron is unique in its support of promoting time in the creative process. Boasting a roster of past artists that includes Kyle Abraham, BODYTRAFFIC, Camille A. Brown, and more, this is a must-see “dance lab” for any dance maker.

People in sillhouette stand in a room of trippy images of different text in different colors

An exhibit at the Conference for Research on Choreographic Interfaces

in Paris, France

In the heart of the 19th arrondissement of Paris sits this former undertaker’s building turned public cultural center. Artists of all disciplines can work in studios on the site, which are open to viewing by the public. The space has two screening rooms and over 25,000 square meters of exhibition space. It has also become a meeting place for some in the Parisian urban dance scene. This unique, public space is certainly not one to miss.

in Nashville, Tennessee

This soon-to-be-completed art mecca in exponentially-growing Nashville sees itself as a “sanctuary encouraging creative communities to experiment, investigate, collaborate, celebrate, and dream.” Already building unique training programs from “The Toolbox” for choreographers to expand their craft, to varied and mindful movement classes, this venue, founded by Nashville dance legend Stacie Flood-Popp, is something to keep an ear out for in the future.

Founded by Sydney Skybetter  “to consider the intrinsic risks and creative possibilities of surveillant computational systems,” this annual gathering boasts rosters of dozens of speakers with backgrounds in choreography, ethnography, data science, hardware hacking, and more to consider the implications and possibilities of the interaction of technologies and art forms of the future.

in Cincinnati, Ohio

Offering a bevy of programs and training opportunities, this arts center will finally have a space of its own by Fall 2021. Whether in search of classes for children or adults or for modern dance performances from their newly formed modern dance company, this conglomerate of different organizations is sure to be a major player in the dance scene of the Midwest for years to come.

An interior view of Le Centrequartre in Paris. People sit at tables on balconies with large windows in the background and skylights above.

Le Centquatre


in New York, New York

While probably on most dancer’s bucket lists in general, we strongly encourage dancers to make the pilgrimage to see a Broadway show as the industry bounces back from complete shut down during the pandemic. A real economic engine of the dance and theater industry, it has the added benefit of being fun. Broadway shows boast some of the most talented people on the planet from the back row to the starring role.

in Vancouver, British Colombia

In the bustling dance hub of Vancouver sits this drop-in studio whose mission is to bring dance to everyone- “young and old, beginner and expert.” The massive studio and varied faculty make for a great training experience whether for the Vancouverite (?) Vancouverino (?) or for those just looking for a class while visiting Van City. Harbour Dance Centre is worth the visit.

The Hip Hop Scene

in Tokyo, Japan

Well, let’s be real, the energy in Tokyo is unmatched for dancers and non-dancers alike. The hip hop scene in Tokyo has been popping off for years and it’s worth the visit and experience. With its own history to acceptance in the mainstream and its own superstars of the industry, all dancers should take the time to train from this community.

in Pittsburgh, PA

Cozy, creaky, and bespoke, The Space Upstairs offers the incubative feeling of a place for creation with the warm reminders of a living room. Built in 2006, the Space Upstairs prides itself in supporting experiments in collaboration and general artistic permission. Offering classes, residencies, gallery exhibitions, and performances, the Space Upstairs is the true breeding ground of up and coming artists in the Pittsburgh area.

Where You Are Needed

In this time of upheaval it’s important to access not just the world around you but your role in it. Especially while we are still largely unable to travel, look objectively at your art and your special set of skills and put yourself where it is most needed. Are you unhappy with what’s being taught somewhere? Organize a workshop. Do you feel your work would be better appreciated elsewhere? How do we, as members of the dance community, fill the various voids within our industry?

An interior view of The Space Upstairs in Pittsburgh, PA. We see lots of different furniture in a warehouse-like setting with a full wall of windows in the background.

The Space Upstairs

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