Rebecca Stenn and Fran Kirmser Launch A LIFE IN DANCE: A PRACTICAL GUIDE, Spring 2017

By: Nov. 30, 2016

Critically acclaimed dancer and educator Rebecca Stenn and veteran Broadway producer Fran Kirmser and are pleased to announce the release of their upcoming book A LIFE IN DANCE: A PRACTICAL GUIDE, available on Amazon in spring of 2017.

Written and edited by Stenn and Kirmser, A LIFE IN DANCE features stories and interviews from over 40 professional dancers spanning all generations and genres, including former New York City Ballet principal ballerina Heather Watts, artistic director, choreographer and dancer Bill T. Jones, and dancer Kamille Upshaw, currently in Hamilton on Broadway and formerly with the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company.

A LIFE IN DANCE will also serve as a resource for dancers, answering vital questions about auditioning, financial planning, working project to project, securing health insurance as a freelance performer, building your own dance company and many more key topics in the ever-evolving life in dance.

"We wrote A LIFE IN DANCE because there is no current dance resource like there are for other performing arts and entertainment genres. Many dancers enter the industry with only the technical knowledge of dance and we want to show, through first person anecdotes and research based resource guides, that there are many ways artists can approach their life in dance," said co-author Fran Kirmser.

"A LIFE IN DANCE was such a joy to write," said co-author Rebecca Stenn. "It is vital for dancers to learn about the countless pathways that are open to them. We hope this book will inspire dancers to explore their many options!"

For more information and to sign up for future announcements please visit:


Rebecca Stenn, dancer, choreographer, educator, writer, founded Rebecca Stenn Company in 1996. The company has since performed to critical acclaim and sold out houses in over 50 cities nationally and internationally including such venues as The Copenhagen Festival, The Edinburgh Festival, The Joyce Theater, Brooklyn Dance Festival at BAM Fisher, The Kitchen, Danspace Project - St. Marks Church, Dance Theater Workshop (now New York Live Arts), Joyce SoHo, Symphony Space, Dance New Amsterdam, La MaMa ETC and Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival among numerous others. The company has received support from the National Endowment for the Arts, The New York State Council for the Arts, The Joyce Theater Foundation, American Music Center and the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts.

Rebecca's undergraduate work was at the Juilliard School, where she earned a BFA in dance. Later Rebecca graduated Summa Cum Laude from the The University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, with her MFA in Dance and Performance. As a member of Momix Dance Theatre from 1989 to 1996, Rebecca performed in over 30 countries, touring extensively throughout Europe, the Far East, South America, the U.S. and Canada and appearing as a featured performer in films for Italian, Spanish and French television. Rebecca assisted in the choreography of and performed in the Emmy Award winning film Pictures at an Exhibition, a PBS, Dance in America Special. She is also a featured performer in the 3D IMAX film Imagine and can be seen in Julie Taymor's film Across the Universe. She has collaborated with Moses Pendleton on the creation of Passion, an evening length work to the music of Peter Gabriel. Rebecca is a founding member of Pilobolus Too, with whom she has toured throughout the world, created numerous works for the repertory (including a piece for the Radio City Rockettes) and has taught Pilobolus residencies at universities, elementary and high schools, and programs for the deaf and blind.

Rebecca has taught for Lincoln Center Institute and throughout New York City schools. She has held residencies and taught at numerous festivals and universities throughout the world, including The Juilliard School, Sadler's Wells Theater in London, Southern Methodist University, Dickinson College and University of Western Ontario. She has been artist in residence at Barnard College, Montclair State University, Manhattanville College, Keene State College and Stockton College. She has been a contributing editor at Dancemagazine, and has published work in the International Journal of Dance and The Brooklyn Rail.

Rebecca is on faculty at The New School and Princeton University and is Choreographer in Residence at Dartmouth College.


Fran Kirmser has worked as a consultant and dance producer with artists and arts organizations for 20 years and has facilitated the work of hundreds of artists to stage. She began her professional career at the age of 14 as a dancer. After a career-ending injury, she started working on the other side of the stage. In 1997, she founded Fran Kirmser LLC, one of the first consulting companies dedicated to fundraising and promotion efforts for the emerging artist. Past and present consulting clients include Francesca Harper, Lisa Giobbi Movement Theater, Shen Wei Dance Arts at Lincoln Center Festival, Pascal Rioult Dance Theater at The Joyce Theater, Lucinda Childs Dance Company at BAM, Helen Simoneau Danse at BAM/Fisher, Doug Varone and Dancers, Darrah Carr, and Jessica Chen. In 2002, she launched The Biography Project, a series of biographical plays that tell the stories of artists in an effort to recognize their voices, better archive their creations, and explore their influence on culture. The first was Isadora ...No Apologies about American dance icon and feminist Isadora Duncan, choreographed by Lori Belilove.

On Broadway, Kirmser co-produced August Wilson's Radio Golf and earned a 2009 Tony Award for Best Musical Revival, Hair, choreographed by Carol Armitage. In 2008, off the heels of the financial crisis, Kirmser conceived a sports series for stage to explore leadership, competition, teamwork, drive and resilience. Developing first Lombardi, based on the life of the iconic leader and renowned football coach Vince Lombardi, starring Dan Lauria and Judith Light. Produced by Kirmser/Ponturo Group and in association with the National Football League, Lombardi opened in 2010 and was the longest running play of the 2010-2011 Season where it brought an estimated 146,000 new patrons to the theater for the first time.

Additional Broadway credits include Magic/Bird, Bronx Bombers, Glengarry Glen Ross, and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? which earned the 2013 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play. Fran serves as Executive Producer of the feature film Lombardi, based on the Broadway play and produced by Legendary Pictures, and the feature film Louis Vs. Schmeling.

She has served on funding panels in the fine and performing arts such as New York Foundation for the Arts and has taught at Columbia University, The New School, Fordham, and colleges across the country as well as Commercial Theater Institute and The Field where she sits on the Advisory Board. Fran serves as a 2016 Tony Voter and is a member of the Broadway League. Having started out her performing arts career as a young professional dancer and self- produced choreographer, her passion is teaching self-producing and fundraising to emerging artists and helping them to realize their projects to stage!



Discover the world of creative producing in this pitch-to-picture guide by Carol Baum and Tom Baum. Get an insider's look at movie development and the behind-the-scenes process. Available October 3, 2023.

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