Our first director, Thais Mazur, was a dancer who was bored with what she was doing and seeing in dance. AXIS Dance Company is a professional physically integrated contemporary dance company and dance education organization founded in 1987 and based in Oakland, California. My journey [toward dance] began before I can remember. He looks intently at the viewer from deep-set eyes. However, ironically, we ended up engaging the community in different ways that allowed us to reach people that we might not under normal circumstances. Nurture your network and further your business goals with smart intelligence on the people and companies that matter most to you. Describe how AXIS Dance utilizes contact improvisation in creating work. Coinciding with the 10th Anniversary of MANCC programming, AXIS Dance Company, one of the world’s leading contemporary repertory companies. Who decides who belongs in a community? If you represent AXIS Dance Company or have material relevant to this organization, we invite you to contribute. While browsing the internet I came across this article about the premiere of Bill t. Jones work for AXIS Dance Company: “Fantasie in C”. Where I used to think of it as a limit to what was possible, it's now a unique interpretation that adds to the beauty of the art. Founded in 1987, AXIS is the nation’s most acclaimed ensembles of disabled and non-disabled performers based in Oakland, CA. Contribute to The Dance History Project of Southern California. Axis Dance Co. | 202 South Second Avenue, Durant, Oklahoma 74701 | info@axisdanceco.com | 580.920.9910 Update information for AXIS Dance Company >> Dance History Project Articles. Founded in 1987[1] by Thais Mazur, Bonnie Lewkowicz, Judith Smith and others, AXIS was one of the first contemporary dance companies in the world to consciously develop choreography that integrates dancers with and without physical disabilities. featuring physically integrated dancers, returns to MANCC for their second residency. We use the sport and art of dance to instill our core values of training, talent, tenacity, and teamwork so that our dancers can grow as athletes, artists, and human beings. The pandemic has [helped] me recognize how important the space we are moving in is, and moreso when you're using a wheelchair to move. I feel that a radically inclusive dance sector generally looks at creating spaces with the least amount of barriers that keep people of all body types and abilities from dance. Occupy is a site-specific journey inspired by the history, design and architecture of Yerba Buena Gardens and the unique movement capabilities of AXIS Dance Company and its broader community of performers. I think we strive to create a “radically inclusive dance sector" through our education opportunities for people with and without disabilities, our performances that are accessible and provide access to this form of dance, and our advocacy for people with disabilities. In some ways, due to the challenges that everyone is/was facing, dance became even more important for expression and connecting with the community. There should be no barrier [that is] based on who you are. My passion for dance grew as I became an adult, learning about new types of dance and methods of expression. We want to create safe spaces for people to be creative and feel empowered… In AXIS I have the experience to share dance with so many different bodies and people that keep expanding my mind and my notion of what dance can be. AXIS Dance Company’s Divide by Marc Brew (2014). As noted in its vision statement, the long-time National Endowment for the Arts grantee aims to “create a radically inclusive dance sector and world by removing barriers and showcasing the beauty of difference.” In 1998, Judith Smith took over Artistic Direction, and visioning a repertory company quickly trajected AXIS into the dance world with a commission by Bill T. Jones. The work premiered in 1999 and is an important milestone in the history of AXIS Dance … Continue reading → At Axis Dance Studio our mission isn’t just to build skilled dancers. He has a trim, dark-brown beard, a piercing under his lower lip and on his ear, and wears a black cap, a flowered shirt, and … I have tried to stop but it keeps coming back. He has a trim, dark-brown beard, a piercing under his lower lip and on his ear, and wears a black cap, a flowered shirt, and … Who decides if you can call a place home? The two founded Axis soon after in 1987, creating a dance that the company performed a year later at a festival. Interview, Judith Smith, “Artistic Director, AXIS Dance Company” conducted by Esther Ehrlich in 2005, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2006. [9]. Complexions performs worldwide, provides dance education, and was America's first [citation needed] fully multicultural ballet company. AXIS Dance Company exists to change the face of dance and disability. Just Published! Art is essential, dance is essential, contact is essential. [It] is not the same [as working together in real life]  but I'm grateful that even though the world has changed the way we socialize, we as artists keep finding ways to keep doing the work. Contact improvisation has a huge place in the history of physically-integrated dance. Through interactions between these dancers and nondisabled dancers, a new dance vocabulary began to be developed. Working with AXIS has allowed me to see more of what the disability community can bring to the table and has to offer, but mostly just expanding my outlook and allowing me to see dance and other forms of art from a different perspective. Hancher celebrates physically integrated dance with AXIS Dance Company | Iowa Now But I do fear that the urge to experience dance and be in a company the ways we are used to will start to weigh on the community before things start to run smoothly again. [6] The AXIS Dance Company has commissioned works by a number of renowned choreographers, including Ann Carlson, Sonya Delwaide, Joe Goode, Joanna Haigood, Margaret Jenkins, Bill T. Jones, Victoria Marks, and Stephen Petronio. I've been with [the company] for three years now. Inside AXIS Dance Company: A Conversation with the Company. Founded in 1987, AXIS is the nation's most acclaimed ensembles of disabled and non-disabled performers. The Company has created more than sixty repertory works, two evening-length works, and commissions for Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Bates Dance Festival, San Francisco Exploratorium, and CAL Performances-UAM/PFA. While browsing the internet I came across this article about the premiere of Bill t. Jones work for AXIS Dance Company: “Fantasie in C”. Founded in 1987, AXIS Dance Company is an Oakland, California-based physically integrated dance company whose ensemble comprises disabled and non-disabled performers. It wasn't until [I was] 13 that I had the privilege to dance in a studio; I traveled more than one hour by train to get to the studio in Yokohama [,Japan]. I have had many roles [including] costume designer, performer, teaching artist, and associate director…. Dancers: Sonsherée Giles, Joel Brown & Sebastian Grubb. That has shaped my ability and knowledge over time and allowed me to grow as a dancer. Update information for AXIS Dance Company >> Dance History Project Articles. AXIS is a leader in integrated dance, and I would love to see that influence make an impact on all dance organizations. In AXIS we don't have specific roles for disabled and nondisabled; we are all treated like equals in the dance space. Axis Dance Studio. Photo by Ren Dodge. Now, the nation’s most acclaimed physically-integrated dance ensemble comes to Colorado Springs with an evening of repertory that highlights the breadth of their artistry. I feel that the pandemic has really turned what it means to be a part of the dance community on its head, meaning how we as dancers live in a kind of bubble that you become familiar with the more time you spend in it. Founded in 1987 and based in Oakland, California, AXIS has become a jewel of contemporary dance and disability culture. Choreographers include Karen Peterson and KPD dancer Oscar Trujillo; video artists include Dinorah de Jesus Rodriguez and Heber Siqueiros; and guest dancers include JanpiStar from AXIS Dance Company and Dwyane Scheuneman from REVolutions Dance. AXIS has been a home that is impossible to find in any organization that is not physically integrated. Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Dance. ABC-CLIO Companion to the Disability Rights Movement, p. 97, Learn how and when to remove this template message, "A Dance Company Mixes Arms, Legs and Wheels", "Review: Axis Dance Company at Malonga Casquelord", "Rebel filmmaker's movie about Burning Man screens in Oakland", Artists with Disabilities Oral History Page, "Activating National and Local Connections to Further Physically Integrated Dance", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=AXIS_Dance_Company&oldid=953972089, Articles with a promotional tone from November 2016, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Sustained Achievement in 2014 to Judith Smith, Founding Member and Artistic Director Emerita, Outstanding Achievement in Performance - Individual in 2012 to Marc Brew for, Ensemble Performance in 2002 to Nadia Adame and Jacques Poulin-Denis in, Costume Design in 2001 to Mario Alonzo for AXIS’ entire Home Season, Company Performance in 2000 for AXIS’ entire Home Season, Choreography to Bill T. Jones in 2000 for, Individual Performance in 2000 to Uli Schmitz, the first disabled dancer to receive this award, This page was last edited on 30 April 2020, at 00:56. How did AXIS Dance Company get started? AXIS Dance Company celebrated 30 years this weekend with their home season, “Onward and Upward,” at the Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts in Oakland. Horizons Foundation 550 Montgomery Street, Suite 700 San Francisco, CA 94111 Directions. AXIS Dance Company Artistic Director Marc Brew is photographed against a white background. Rehearsal Director Sonsherée Giles and company dancer DeMarco Sleeper will hold a virtual master class hosted by the Harvard Dance … I used to think of disability as a negative attribute, in terms of something that's missing. Add a bio, recollection, and more. My whole life I wanted to be a dancer but because I was in a wheelchair and living in the Caribbean ( Puerto Rico) every time I was trying to take a class or join an artistic group, I was rejected. AXIS Dance Company, Dancers’ Group and Yerba Buena Gardens Festival presented Occupy – A site-specific journey through an urban garden, July 1-2, 2017. While Dancing Wheels, based in Cleveland, OH, was the first repertory dance company to train and present dancers with and without disabilities (Austin, 2011), AXIS has built an exceptional repertory by commissioning established, well-known contemporary choreographers to create works for the company (e.g. The impact of the pandemic is tremendous and isolating. Also we want to break with all the stereotypes that we have in the dance world [that say] you need to have specific parts of the body to achieve specific tasks. AXIS will perform the headline work Radical Impact created by internationally renowned AXIS Artistic Director and Choreographer Marc Brew, in collaboration with JooWan Kim Artistic Director o Welcome to AXIS Dance Competition where Linda Diamonds years of experience bring you the vitality of a new beginning. I’ve been a dancer with AXIS for about a year now and one of the biggest things [that’s changed] since having the opportunity to dance with artists of all types of abilities [is it’s] expanded my view as to what a person can and cannot do [and] also to how a person can overcome most, if not all, obstacles that would stop them from being seen as a professional dancer/artist. Social distancing [because of the pandemic] initially seemed to be a major obstacle to our mission and performances. AXIS Dance Company’s Divide by Marc Brew (2014). Now, I've come to see disability as a trait that completes someone, as a component of their identity. After becoming disabled I got the opportunity to be a part of two physically integrated dance companies before finding my way to AXIS. I feel it is a great tool this virtual access that we have now in the world because that opens the possibilities to bring people together from different parts of the world. He looks intently at the viewer from deep-set eyes. With support from the California Arts Council, AXIS Dance Company will offer subsidized assemblies (free for students) to 15 selected […] This first piece premiered in 1988, receiving a standing ovation. AXIS exists to change the face of dance and disability. Bill T. Jones, Sonya Delwaide, Joe Goode, Alex Ketley, Shinichi Iova-Koga, Joanna … Being in a space where I feel invited and not excluded is for me the ideal space for everyone to enjoy movement. What this looks like to me is providing levels of education for different dance abilities that can be scaffolded and built upon, allowing artists with different body types and abilities to build foundation and training that leads them to a professional-level company. It's in my blood and bones. My journey to becoming a dancer started when I was very young. My grandfather and mother were both dancers, I have been dancing since I entered this life. Phone: (415) 398-2333 Fax: (415) 398-4733 Email: info [at] horizonsfoundation.org Federal Tax ID: 94-2686530 Charity Navigator Score: 100 AXIS has received numerous Isadora Duncan Dance Awards (IZZIES) including: The company has also received numerous IZZIE nominations for artistic work and production elements. I had always danced on my own growing up but got more into the hip-hop genre during high school, before becoming a wheelchair user. We want everyone to feel welcome in the dance space. She has shown her work at the Kennedy Center, the Smithsonian Institution and the Armory show in New York. Under her creative leadership, AXIS has grown into a dynamic ensemble … As noted in its vision statement, the long-time National Endowment for the Arts grantee aims to “create a radically inclusive dance sector and world by removing barriers and showcasing the beauty of difference.” As we learned by speaking to four members of the ensemble, the company’s dedication to broadening the perception of what dance looks like is not just about what the audience sees on stage. Mission: AXIS Dance Company’s mission is to create and perform high quality contemporary dance that is developed through the collaboration of dancers with and without disabilities.AXIS teaches dance and educates about collaboration and disability through community education and outreach programs. ... Our studio was built from the ground up through hard work and dedication, and it’s a place with a lot of history. Roots Above Ground, a 45 minute physically integrated dance program making its world premiere at AXIS’ Home Season, will explore the multiple meanings of home. Working with AXIS Dance Company has opened my mind for more possibilities in the creative space. When we started AXIS we didn’t know people setting choreography, but we knew contact improv was happening between people with and without disabilities. ... AXIS Artistic Director Judith Smith and MANCC Director Carla Peterson honor AXIS’s 27 year history with a conversation about the legacy of repertory companies. AXIS Dance Company, which focuses on physically integrated dance by performers with and without disabilities, formed in Oakland. [2][3] AXIS dancers with disabilities have included wheelchair users (both manual wheelchairs and power wheelchairs), crutch users, and people with amputations using prosthetic limbs. As company member Sonsherée Giles noted in an e-mail interview, “The language I use and the choices I make to be more accessible and inclusive have been directly informed by my history with AXIS.” Here, in their own words, are Giles, JanpiStar, DeMarco Sleeper, and Yuko Monden Juma on what they’ve learned about dance and about disability from being part of AXIS, what an inclusive dance field looks like to them, and—in a nod to the current times—how the pandemic has impacted their relationship to dance. Axis Dance Co. | 202 South Second Avenue, Durant, Oklahoma 74701 | info@axisdanceco.com | 580.920.9910 AXIS Dance Company hits the stage in San Francisco with The Radical Impact Tour May 4-6, 2018 at Z Space. In 1987, she cofounded AXIS Dance Company (then AXIS Dance Troupe), which pioneered physically integrated dance created through the collaboration of dancers with and without disabilities. AXIS has created a wonderful place for people to enjoy dance together; it has changed the way I see dance, and believe it has a lot to offer by engaging the community. 1991 Trisha Brown awarded a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. AXIS Dance Company grew out of a movement class into a jewel of contemporary dance, featuring work by leading choreographers performed by brilliant—and diverse—dancers. This innovative yet traditional event promises to be a combination of fun, professionalism and passion. Their work has received nine Isadora Duncan Dance Awards and nine additional nominations for both their artistry and production values. If you represent AXIS Dance Company or have material relevant to this organization, we invite you to contribute. Sonsherée Giles, AXIS Rehearsal Director, Artistic Advisor & Performing/Teaching Artist. AXIS Dance Company celebrated 30 years this weekend with their home season, “Onward and Upward,” at the Malonga Casquelourd Center for the Arts in Oakland. The project provides AXIS with a period of research and development with choreographers Nichole Canuso (PA), Beth Gill (NY) and Jill Sigman (NY) each of … AXIS has paved the way for a powerful contemporary dance form—physically integrated dance—performing in over 100 cities in the US, Israel, UK, Europe, and Russia. Contribute to The Dance History Project of Southern California. Dancers: Sonsherée Giles, Joel Brown & Sebastian Grubb. AXIS dancers who are not disabled come with training in a variety of contemporary dance, improvisation and other movement practices. Complexions Contemporary Ballet is a contemporary ballet company founded in 1994 by Co-Artistic Directors Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson based in New York City comprising about 14 classical and contemporary dancers. One thing is for sure, the future of dance doesn't necessarily need to happen in the same room! Teachers, studio owners, dancers and parents shared what they want in a dance competition, and AXIS is here to deliver! AXIS’ education programs, Dance Access and Dance Access/KIDS! Founded in 1987, AXIS Dance Company is an Oakland, California-based physically integrated dance company whose ensemble comprises disabled and non-disabled performers. AXIS Dance Company has become one of the world’s most acclaimed and innovative ensembles of performers with and without disabilities. Trying different teachers and dance studios in Puerto Rico, Latin America, and around the world, I found the information about physically integrated dance and AXIS Dance Company's Summer Intensive and that's how I joined the company. AXIS began in 1987 when founding Artistic Director Thais Mazur had the great idea and creative vision to gather a group of dancers with and without disabilities to explore dance and create a performance piece. AXIS Dance Company is a professional physically integrated contemporary dance company and dance education organization founded in 1987 and based in Oakland, California. AXIS Dance Company with consultant Debra Cash of Boston Dance Alliance, and our colleague Jo Verrent of Unlimited - the world's largest commissioning program for disabled artists - have collaborated on this compendium of information for artists, educators, producers, funders and others interested in the issues of dance that includes people with disabilities. Mar 29, 1991. Photo by David DeSilva. I first joined AXIS in 2005. This started a trend, which eventually became known as physically integrated dance, which seeks to broaden the definition of ‘dance’ and ‘dancer’ and increase opportunities for artistic expression through movement for a wide spectrum of physical attributes and disabilities. After that, offers to perform and create kept coming. AXIS Dance Company Artistic Director Marc Brew is photographed against a white background. The language I use and the choices I make to be more accessible and inclusive have been directly informed by my history with AXIS. This pandemic has made me realize how much we relate to other bodies to get ideas and create. Performed by AXIS Dance Company with an integrated cast of 20 dancers. Their work has received nine Isadora Duncan Dance Awards and nine additional nominations for both their artistry and production values. AXIS Dance Company began when a group of dancers with and without physical disabilities came together to explore dance. Being a person with a disability [it’s empowering] being in a space where everyone is working together [despite] their differences physically and culturally. At the same time, my dream of living in America fused with my love for dance, and I decided to develop my life and career here. There will also be a brief retrospective look at the company's three-decade history. Dancing Wheels, Infinity Dance Theater, Joint Forces, Spitzer Dance Company, and Axis are part of a growing trend where wheelchairs and crutches expand choreographic possibilities. ... AXIS Artistic Director Judith Smith and MANCC Director Carla Peterson honor AXIS’s 27 year history with a conversation about the legacy of repertory companies. [4][5] The physically integrated dance movement is part of a broader disability culture movement, which recognizes and celebrates the first-person experience of disability, not as a medical-model construct but as a social phenomenon, through artistic, literary, and other creative means. As a young child I would follow music no matter where I was, and that trend continued as I grew older. Photo by Ren Dodge. Founded in 1987, AXIS has paved the way for a powerful contemporary dance form called physically integrated dance. Dance Informa spoke with Judith Smith to find out more about the physically-integrated contemporary dance company and why AXIS makes such an impact. Performed by AXIS Dance Company with an integrated cast of 20 dancers. Emily joined AXIS Dance Company in 2012. It's a way of life—my first true love. offer an extensive array of events for adults and youth of all abilities. [7] This event was supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation National Project Program, and culminated in the creation of the report, The Future of Physically Integrated Dance in the USA, which looks at “ways to 1) improve and expand training opportunities and develop pedagogy for dancers with disabilities; and 2) improve training and expand opportunities for disabled choreographers and nondisabled choreographers to work with disabled dancers or integrated ensembles.”[8]. AXIS Dance Company. It is one of the first contemporary dance companies in the world to consciously develop choreography that integrates dancers with and without physical disabilities. American Artscape: The Arts in the Time of COVID, A Look at the National Endowment for the Arts' Leadership in Accessibility. Over the years, I have been exposed to many powerful and intelligent artists that I may have not met in a more traditional dance company. The two founded Axis soon after in 1987, creating a dance that the company performed a year later at a festival. I am sad for performing arts in general and theaters. Dwayne Scheuneman is affiliated with Axis Dance Company Stay informed and up-to-date on your network with RelSci news and business alerting service. It is one of the first contemporary dance companies in the world to consciously develop choreography that integrates dancers with and without physical disabilities. AXIS Dance Company is comprised of disabled and non-disabled dancers working together to challenge misconceptions about the art form. AXIS has performed in more than sixty cities, Europe, and Siberia. At The Axis Centre for Dance, we believe that the dancer comes first. This week on Open Air, host David Latulippe talks to Judy Smith, Artistic Director and co-founder of AXIS Dance Company, and choreographer Linda K. Johnson about the AXIS 2014 Home Season; we hear live music from the Mobius guitar trio, part of the Switchboard Music Festival line-up, and festival co-director Annie Philips talks about the Festival and some of the other performers; … Notable performances include the Olympic Arts Festival, 2002; Meredith Monk’s 40th Anniversary Celebrations at St. Marks & the World Financial Center, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts; Scottsdale Center for the Arts; UC Santa Barbara; Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago ; SF Internat’l Arts Festival; The Kentucky Center for the Arts; Paralympics 1997; Walker Arts Center; Dartmouth College; Flynn Center for the Performing Arts; UMass Fine Arts Center; University of Cologne, Germany; Dance Umbrella’s Internat’l Festival of Aerial Dance; and Railroad Theater, Novosibirsk, Siberia. Located in Oakland, California, AXIS has been accomplishing this for over 30 years through three pillars of activity: Artistry, Engagement & Advocacy. First female choreographer to be given this honor ... Yellow Labs Software Inc. History. This company by its nature of being physically integrated challenges stereotypes of what a dancer looks like and who can dance. After that, offers to perform and create kept coming. Unfortunately I have spent more time facilitating online dance classes and work sessions in Zoom rooms on the computer then I have in my entire life; I miss contact and partnering. She has an MFA in Fine Art from the California College of Art and a BFA in Theater and Film from the University of Colorado. Can You Guess These Christmas Movies From Partial Character Lists? I have been working with AXIS for more than three years now, and in that time, I have developed a strong interest in including everyone in dance. After I got tired of being told that I couldn't be a dancer, I decided that I would be a dancer in my own way. Coming to work with AXIS just confirms my belief that no matter how your body is, you can be creative and fulfill any role in the artistic world. The message that AXIS shares makes an impact not only to dancers, but the community as well—changing not only what dance looks like, but people's notion of ability. Add a bio, recollection, and more. The work premiered in 1999 and is an important milestone in the history of AXIS Dance … Continue reading → AXIS Dance Company. Occupy is a site-specific journey inspired by the history, design and architecture of Yerba Buena Gardens and the unique movement capabilities of AXIS Dance Company and its broader community of performers. In May 2016 during its 30th anniversary season, AXIS Dance Company hosted the first, three-day National Convening: The Future of Physically Integrated Dance in the USA at Gibney Dance in New York. 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