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Dance Lab New York Celebrates 10 Years Of Providing Crucial Resources To Choreographers

Fall 2023 features eight sessions, including the Fall Lab Cycle, Tap Dance Project, More to the Pointe Lab, and Next Gen Mentorship Program.

Dance Lab New York (DLNY), the unique artist-centered and artist-led choreography incubator founded by Broadway veteran and choreographer Josh Prince, celebrates the launch of its 10th anniversary season with eight different Lab Cycles this fall, providing a launching pad to 21 choreographers.

Initiatives include a Fall Lab Cycle featuring choreographers Christian Denice, Madison Hicks, and Will A. Ervin Jr.; DLNY Tap Dance Project with Resident Directors Ayodele Casel and Torya Beard; More to the Pointe Lab featuring choreographers Durante Verzola, Isaiah Newby, and Suzanne Haag; and the DLNY NextGen Mentorship Program with choreographers Luke Biddinger and Anayah Santos.

Of the organization's first decade, founder Josh Prince says, "It's profound to look back on these first 10 years and realize we've already provided residencies to over 80 choreographers. With continued support for our mission, it's inspiring to think about what the future holds." Through its signature model of support, Dance Lab New York has helped provide crucial resources to well-known choreographers including Camille A. Brown, Andy Blankenbuehler, Larry Keigwin, Lorin Latarro, Joann M. Hunter, Hope Boykin, Amy Hall Garner, Lauren Lovette, Ephrat Asherie, Courtney Washington, and Cartier Williams, among many others to allow them to explore and develop new ideas.

From September 12 - October 7, 2022, DLNY hosts its Fall Lab Cycle featuring choreographers Christian Denice, Madison Hicks, and Will A. Ervin Jr. In this core program, each choreographer receives a salary, structured exploration time in a studio with a company of professional dancers provided by DLNY, a rehearsal director, digital assets, and support from the Dance Lab New York administrative staff.

The DLNY Tap Dance Project takes place from October 17 - November 4, 2022, led by Resident Directors Ayodele Case, a Drama Desk Nominee and Bessie Award winning "tap dancer and choreographer of extraordinary depth" (The New York Times), and New York-based director, creative consultant/strategist, choreographer, educator, and producer Torya Beard. The program celebrates one of the few truly American dance genres, and aims to give tap dancing the recognition and the resources it deserves, noting the general lack of awareness and rehearsal space. Prince says, "Tap dance choreographers have continued to innovate despite sizable challenges. The genre is traditionally under-resourced - and even more so for artists of color, whom we know receive a disproportionately low level of funding overall. Dance Lab New York's Tap Dance Project seeks to provide much needed and much deserved creative space for this singular American art form. Towards that end, Dance Lab appoints resident directors who carry forward the cultural and artistic legacy of the tap dance tradition with the utmost care." Choreographers for the Tap Dance Project will be announced in October 2022.

Choreographers Durante Verzola, Isaiah Newby, and Suzanne Haag lead the More to the Pointe Lab from November 1-18, 2022. Born out of a desire to support artists exploring gender in ballet, Dance Lab New York's More to the Pointe Lab focuses on a question we have seen emerge in the dance field: who gets to dance en pointe? In a cultural moment when many artists are breaking new ground in ballet, this lab provides a platform for choreographers interested in answering this question in new ways. Throughout the history of ballet, pointe work has traditionally been performed by women, and the pointe shoe itself has symbolized conventional notions of femininity. While there is much to interrogate in this paradigm, this lab will provide choreographers a group of male, transmasculine, and/or non-binary dancers who train en pointe. By giving this iteration of ballet the room to grow, we aim to create the opportunity for new expressions of gender in ballet to take shape. Rehearsal space for this Lab will be provided by Chautauqua Institution.

DLNY NextGenʼs Mentorship Program is designed to help young choreographers unleash their creative potential by providing them with robust guidance from a professional in the field. DLNY NextGen choreographers will partake in an individualized semester-long apprenticeship this fall, during which they hone their choreography practice. In weekly one-on-one sessions, the resident mentor - esteemed choreographer and arts educator, William Carlos Angulo - will help young choreographers develop an individualized choreography methodology. Choreographers will learn how to channel and harness inspiration, incubate movement, create a strategy, and execute their ideas. The semester will culminate in a month-long Lab residency, happening October 29-November 28, 2022, with an ensemble of young professional dancers provided by Dance Lab New York to mentees Luke Biddinger and Anayah Santos.

Dance Lab New York Fall 2022 Calendar
September 12 - October 7: Fall Lab Cycle
Choreographers: Christian Denice, Madison Hicks, and Will A. Ervin Jr.

October 17 - November 4: DLNY Tap Dance Project
Resident Directors: Ayodele Casel and Torya Beard
Choreographers: TBA

October 29 - November 28: DLNY Next Gen Mentorship Program
Choreographers: Luke Biddinger and Anayah Santos

November 1-18: More to the Pointe Lab
Choreographers: Durante Verzola, Isaiah Newby, and Suzanne Haag

Dance Lab New York (DLNY) is an artist-centered and artist-led organization that offers a diverse range of choreographers essential resources and a unique framework tailor made to imbue the creative process with the support and care that daring ideas require. DLNY will celebrate its 10th anniversary during the 2022/23 season, supporting 21 artists through eight Choreography Labs.

Dance Lab New York's week-long residencies provide dancemakers a company of professional dancers, expansive studio space, and structured time for creation, complete with a rehearsal director and key administrative support. Within this oasis, artists are able to find respite from the unavoidable pressure of creative life, and devote more energy toward bringing forth their boldest visions.

Choreographers often exist in a Catch-22. In order to bring fresh perspectives to life, they need dancers, time and space: three essential ingredients that are taxing to assemble if not prohibitively expensive. Additionally, when there are resources, there are typically brisk deadlines for a finished product, creating a pressure cooker that can undermine creativity. As a result, even seasoned dancemakers are inhibited from crafting their best work, and new voices can be snuffed out before they have a chance to emerge. At best, this vicious cycle strips the rehearsal period of the playfulness that feeds the artistic process; at worst, it deprives the world of the essential creativity that feeds the human spirit.

By design, Dance Lab New York does not demand a finished product. By investing in process, we bring to life creativity that might otherwise be lost in the dance industry's current workflow.

Broadway choreographer Josh Prince founded Dance Lab New York to fulfill a need he saw firsthand. Although Prince was given opportunities very early in his career, he found that the short, rapid timelines and administrative demands of choreography left little room for the kind of explorations that lend themselves to the most innovative ideas. Additionally, he could see that the cost of those explorations, alongside other structural barriers, placed limits not only on the finished product, but on who was afforded the opportunity to create dance at all. Dance Lab New York was formed in response to these concerns, to offer artists a chance to fulfill their promise by giving them the time and space to find and/or hone their voice.

Since launching in 2012, Dance Lab New York has encouraged more than 80 choreographers across a broad range of genres to take chances on ideas that might otherwise have been lost without this unique forum for creativity. Learn more at

Josh Prince began his career as an actor after graduating from the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. Along with numerous regional and concert engagements, he appeared on Broadway in Little Me and Saturday Night Fever, Off-Broadway in Forbidden Broadway, toured the country in CATS, and starred as "Carmen Ghia" in The Producers opposite Jason Alexander and Martin Short. He founded the choreography incubator Dance Lab New York in 2012.

Prince made his Broadway choreographic debut with the blockbuster hit Shrek, The Musical (Outer Critics Circle Nomination), which went on to tour the US, play in London's West End, and tour the UK. He is also the choreographer of the award-winning Broadway show, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical (Olivier, Helpmann, and Astaire Award nominations). Beautiful has since toured the US, UK, Japan, and Australia. Prince choreographed the Disney Cruise Lines adaptation of the mega-hit animated film, Frozen, and his work can be seen in Trevor, The Musical, now on Disney+ (Lucille Lortel nomination, Chita Rivera Award).

Prince has choreographed at multiple prestigious venues across the US and UK, including New York City Center, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Kennedy Center, BAM, The New Group, Stage 42, George St. Playhouse, ACT, Fifth Avenue Theater, Signature Theater (DC), The Old Vic, Royal Festival Hall, and Royal Albert Hall. He also served as Director/Choreographer for Grease starring Janel Parrish at the Winter Garden Theater in Toronto, Canada and is the award-winning Director of the short film, First Try, which chronicles three choreographers as they navigate the Covid pandemic.

Currently, Prince is collaborating with Tony-nominated director, Sheryl Kaller, on two new musicals, A Walk On The Moon and Bliss.


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