Bay Area Dance Week, A 10-Day Celebration Of Dance, Returns April 26

Bay Area Dance Week, A 10-Day Celebration Of Dance, Returns April 26

Bay Area Dance Week, one of the nation's largest, most inclusive celebrations of movement and dance, returns this April 26 - May 5, 2019, to hundreds of venues throughout the Bay Area. Each year the Bay Area Dance community throws open its doors and invites the public to experience its rich and vibrant dance scene, completely free of charge.

Bay Area Dance Week offers something for everyone, regardless of experience, age, and agility. Participants can choose from workshops, performances, classes, open rehearsals, and more. First time dancers can explore a variety of dance styles, art lovers can go behind-the-scenes and see how dances get made, wannabe divas can unleash their inner pop star while learning music video routines, young movers can participate in a variety of family-friendly classes and activities. Whether Bolivian folkloric dance, Tahitian dance, Congolese Dance, Hula, Jazz, Hip Hop for adults and kids - this festival has something for everyone.

This year's festival kicks off with everyone's favorite globetrotting dance sequence and dance party, One Dance, led by Dancers' Group and Rhythm & Motion at Yerba Buena Gardens on Friday, April 26 at 12noon. The event begins with a "silent disco adventure." Everyone will download or stream an audio track through the headphones of their smartphones and follow along with the simple movement instructions. No previous rehearsal necessary or dance experience required. After the "tour" ends and everyone's warmed up, the music starts for One Dance, a high energy dance sequence in Rhythm & Motion's trademark style of fun movement.

The recipients of the 2019 Dancers Choice Award and the Della Davidson Prize will also be honored at the kick-off.

This year's Dancers Choice Award goes to Sangam Arts. Founded in 2013, Sangam Arts provides a platform platform for artists from diverse backgrounds to come together to collaborate on music and dance performances. Using a wide range of cultural and artistic expressions from Folklorico and Tap to Kathak and Hula, Sangam strives to help audiences recognize their common humanity, and celebrates the artistic community's vibrant diversity. Led by Usha Srinivasan and Priya Das, Mosaic Silicon Valley is Sangam's flagship initiative focused on strengthening diverse communities through multicultural collaborative arts. In its 12th year, this award honors individuals and organizations that are creatively impacting dance.

This year's Della Davidson Prize recipient is Sarah Bush, an artist that creates her inimitable style of movement by combining her training in ballet, modern, hip hop, jazz, Afro-Caribbean, and contact improvisation. In 2007 she formed her company, Sarah Bush Dance Project to promote innovative artistry, community interaction, and feminist ideals through the creation and presentation of multimedia dance. To date, SBDP has presented four critically acclaimed repertory shows in the Bay Area: Home,Rocked By Women, This Landand Spirit & Bones. The Della Davidson Prize honors the life and work of Bay Area dance luminary Della Davidson, who passed away in 2012. An annual prize is awarded to a choreographer/dance-maker producing work in the spirit of Ms. Davidson.

With nearly 400 events to choose from, there is something for everyone at Bay Area Dance Week. The public can pick up a free event guide in early April or visit anytime to explore free events including dance classes, open rehearsals, performances and more. A few festival highlights include:

Opening Weekend
Kick start your festival with these dance styles, from Mill Valley to San José

Persist: A multigenerational aerial dance show

Aerial Dance Marin, Sat, Apr 27, San Rafael

An evening of aerial dance exploring personal, political and ecological futures from the perspectives of teens, young adults and seasoned elders.

Day of Dance for Every Body

Big Moves, Sun, Apr 28, Berkeley

Celebrate all bodies with an afternoon of free beginner-friendly classes with the most joyful and body-positive instructors on the block. An introduction to the joy of dance and new dance styles while having fun in a supportive, fat-positive environment.

A Taste of Odissi Dance

Guru Shradha,Sun, Apr 28, Palo Alto

Experience Odissi dance, a reconstructed ancient Indian classical dance form which has a deep relationship with the temple sculptural art, bringing dance sculptures centuries old alive, in this student showcase. Odissi dance is characterized by a juxtaposition of fluid upper body movements against strong footwork.

Ethnic Dances from the Balkans and Beyond

Kopachka Folk Dancers, Fri, Apr 26, Mill Valley

Dance to unusual rhythms and mesmerizing music from the Balkans and beyond, with feet and arms often moving together in line, plus couple and solo dances. All levels of dancers welcome.

Fan Fest: Company Class Observation

San Francisco Ballet, Sun, Apr 28, San Francisco

Join San Francisco Ballet for an up-close look at the dancers' daily ritual - company class - on stage at the War Memorial Opera House. Guests will enjoy open seating in the Opera House auditorium. Grab a bite to eat and visit interactive booths outside the Opera House at Fan Fest to try on a tutu and learn about pointe shoes.

Join Hands for World Dance

Stanford International Dancers, Fri, Apr 26, Menlo Park

Explore, learn, and participate in dances originating from cultures worldwide. Emphasis is on fun, not skill. Join for a world dance lesson and dance party. No partner necessary.

Burlesque from the Inside Out 101: trauma sensitive + creativity-led

Showgirl Awakening, Fri, Apr 26, San Francisco

Has you inner showgirl been waiting to emerge? This two-hour workshop is led by dancer, mentor, and burlesque therapist Kellita Maloof.

Tamalpa Dances with Iu-Hui Chua

Tamalpa Institute, Sat, Apr 27, Kentfield

This class will introduce participants to Anna Halprin's unique approach to dance, focused on developing fundamental tools of kinesthetic awareness and innovative choices in scoring, movement, and improvisation. All levels welcome.

For First-Timers

Take that first step, leap, or hair whip by trying something new during Bay Area Dance Week. Designed for beginners.

Intro to Blues Dance & Dance Party

Bay Area Blues Dance, Wed, May 1, Berkeley

Beat the Blues is a weekly social dance event with introductory lessons and a DJed dance party. Learn the basics of how to move to blues music with a partner and a few fun moves for the social floor.

International Dance in the Afternoon

Berkeley Folk Dancers, Tue, Apr 30, Berkeley

Learn and enjoy dances from Europe, the British Isles, Latin America, the Middle East, Asia, the USA and other places. For all ages.

Intro to Poi Spinning: A Foundation for Beginners

Flowtoys, Wed, May 1, Emeryville
Poi involves swinging and dancing with tethered weights through a variety of rhythmic and geometric patterns. This class will explore the basics of poi spinning, covering planes, direction, timing, and body mechanics, along with an introduction to beginner poi moves.

Intro to Tahitian '?te'a Dance

H?lau Makana Polynesian Cultural Arts Center, Wed, May 1, Alameda

'?te'a is the Tahitian dance accompanied by pulsating drum beats. This class teaches some of the dance basics to use in a short dance.

American Tribal Style® Belly Dance with Sandi Ball

Sandi Ball, Wed, May 1, Alameda

Learn the basics, and more, of this unique belly dance language, including posture and body awareness, slow and fast movements, zils (finger cymbals), as well as introductions to lead-and- follow concepts and group formations for improvisation.

Intro to International Folk Dance

Saratoga Folk Dancers, Thu, May 2, Saratoga

There will be lots of fun, easy-to-follow dances for all ages. Dance to music from all over the world - from Japan to Bulgaria, from Brazil to Serbia, from Poland to Turkey.

"Dances for Camera" - Screendance Shorts

San Francisco Public Library in partnership with Dance Film SF, Thu, May 2, San Francisco

Presenting two collections of short screendance films in two programs of original choreographic works for camera, blending dance with image, music, and movement. Featuring work from the Bay Area and across the globe.

Beginning Hip-Hop with Amanda Warhuus

Shawl-Anderson Dance Center, Thu, May 2, Berkeley

Class includes a wide range of styles primarily breaking, locking and popping which were created in the 1970s and made popular by dance crews in the United States.

Family Fun

Share a love for dance with your family.

Open Rehearsal

AXIS Dance Company, Sat, May 4, Oakland

See excerpts of latest works by this pioneering physically integrated dance company, at this event for all ages.

Dances For Everyone!

Changs International Folk Dancers, Fri, May 3, San Francisco

A Family Night with both traditional and current dances of the world for all dancing levels with emphasis on children and families. Special first hour will be a children's program with easy and fun dance activities.

Open House: Family Dance Classes

Alonzo King LINES Dance Center, Sat, May 4, San Francisco

Free sample classes, taught by members of our KIDS at LINES faculty for 3-10 years olds, their parents and caregivers. Watch your kids experience the revelatory joy of dance and jump in to share the experience yourself.

Bay Area Dance Week Celebration 2019

Kathy Mata Ballet, Sun, May 5, San Francisco

Classical and contemporary ballet pieces performed with live accompaniment. Company members and guests will be performing many different dance styles, including musical theater, modern, lyrical fusion, contemporary, character and much more.

Freestyle Community Dance

Soul Sanctuary Dance, Sat, Apr 28, Berkeley

Dance to an irresistible eclectic blend of funk, blues, world music, positive hip hop, reggae, dance classics, soul, jazz, rock, electronica, pop, and other music to free mind, body and soul. Soul Sanctuary Dance is a welcoming and inclusive event that supports free expression, community, physical and emotional health, and a spirit of generosity.

What's Up!? Aerial Performance

UpSwing Aerial Dance Company, Wed, May 1, Berkeley

A studio showing that explores the magic of dancing on the floor and into the air. We will be dancing on the wall, in the air and everywhere in between.

International Exchange

Hundreds of dance forms from around the world call the Bay Area home! Experience these traditions and innovations.

Tinku - Intro to Bolivian Folklore

Bolivia Corazón de América, Sat, Apr 27, San Francisco

This class will teach the basics of Bolivian folklorico to the style of La Cueca (Bolivia's national dance) and Caporales - a dance that shows women's femininity and males' virility.

Blossom Festival - International Dance Party

Folk Dance Federation of California, Sun, Apr 28, San Francisco

Participate in a large program of dances from around the world. First hour to be instruction time for dancers of all ages and experience. Basic rhythms, steps and styling will be reviewed and a mixed program including requests will follow.

Flamenco Class

YWCA Berkeley/Oakland, Mon, Apr 29, Berkeley

Explore the foundations of this dynamic art form of multicultural Southern Spain known for its intricate rhythms, percussive footwork with an emphasis on a strong, grounded and expressive upper body.

Rhythm, Drama, Beauty: Intro to India's Kathak

Chhandam School of Kathak, Thu, May 2, Berkeley

Known for its powerful footwork, lightning pirouettes, delicate hand gestures, and dramatic storytelling, Kathak gives a window into India's rich history, philosophy, and rhythmical mathematics.

Pre-May Day Folk Dance Celebration!

Razzmatazz Folk Dance Club, Thu, Apr 30, Santa Rosa

An intermediate-level international folk dance class on the eve of May Day to celebrate the coming of spring! Refreshments will be served.

Congolese Dance Class

Fua Dia Congo and Girls to Women, Sat, Apr 27, East Palo Alto

Learn dances from the Congo for all ages and levels.

Step into the World of Greek Dance

Greek Feet, Mon, Apr 29, San Francisco

Learn fundamental steps and distinctive rhythms of Greek dancing in this introductory class. Discover the rich culture and spirit of Greek music and dancing.

Bharatanatyam - Indian Classical Dance

Ushanjali School of Dance/Mahea Uchiyama Center for International Dance, Sat, Apr 27, Berkeley

A class in Bharatanatyam (South Indian Classical dance form). Anyone from beginners to advanced level can join the class, followed by an open house to experience the basics of the art form.

Afro-Haitian with Blanche Brown

ODC, Fri, May 3, San Francisco

An introduction to the technique, culture, and spirituality of Haitian dance. You will learn the subtle movements of the Rada dances, the strength of the Nago dances, and the excitement of the Petro Dances, as well as the joy and abandon of Carnival and Banda dances. Accompanied by a group of traditional drummers.

Inside the Dancer's Studio

Glimpse into a creative process, watch a rehearsal, and hear about dance from a favorite artist!

Faculty Showcase

ODC and Rhythm & Motion, Fri, Apr 26, San Francisco

A selection of ODC and Rhythm & Motions esteemed faculty and accompanists will be performing 10-minute segments with their companies, bands, and collaborators in Studio B.

Ways Not to Drown - a physical theater workshop

Deborah Slater Dance Theater, Sat, Apr 27, San Francisco

Introductory Physical Theater Workshop for artists of all disciplines. Are you looking for new ways to create source material? How do you locate source material? How do you transform it into your art form? How do you translate it for an audience? Deborah Slater help to address these questions, providing structure, guidance and support for you to learn new ways of creating work for audiences.

Dance Dramaturgy Discussion with Sima Belmar

Shawl-Anderson Dance Center, Sun, May 5, Berkeley

What is dance dramaturgy, and how can it deepen your next project? Local dance scholar Sima Belmar will share several examples and pose questions to the group about your current project and how a dramaturg could support your vision.

Dance for Carnaval

Journey To My Best Self, Thu, May 2, Alameda

Rehearse choreography that will be performed in Carnaval San Francisco. Learn traditional Samba fused with other Afro-Caribbean dance forms.

Tour Smuin's New Home!

Smuin Contemporary Ballet, Mon, Apr 29, San Francisco

Smuin is renovating its first permanent home! Drop by for a hard hat tour of our studio space while it's still under construction.

Moving Words - Salon Series

Mahea Uchiyama Center for International Dance, Sat, Apr 27, Berkeley

Experience poetry readings, dance improv, song, music and visual art in a cozy, intimate setting. Bring your words, melodies, instruments and movements and let's all enjoy an hour of bliss!

Swing Dance Taster Class & Social Dance to Live Band

The Breakaway - Swing Dancing in Oakland, Thu, Apr 30, Oakland

A night of swing dancing fun! Come for the one hour Taster Class and learn what you need to know to have fun on the social dance floor right away. Live music from Evelyn and her Vintage Ties.


Movement brings health to our minds and bodies.

Dance for PD

Alonzo King LINES Dance Center, Thu, May 2, San Francisco

Join experienced Teaching Artists for creativity, exploration, community and dance. It is an encouraging environment for individuals with Parkinson's Disease and their loved ones. Classes are tailored for varying abilities and begin seated in chairs.

Gospel Grooves

Gospel Grooves, Thu, May 2, Oakland

A group dance exercise focused on spiritual, physical and social wellness. Dance to variety of gospel music. This class is for all levels.

Biodanza - The Dance of Life

Biodanza, Thu, May 2, Berkeley

A deep yet joyful holistic personal growth practice. It opens the heart, frees the body and expands consciousness. Though the name implies dance, it's a powerful yet gentle personal growth modality with no steps to learn nor any right or wrong way to do it.

Body Tales & Authentic Movement for Women

Lysa Castro, Fri, Apr 26, Berkeley

Experience the synergy and support of inner-guided movement, personal stories, and supportive witnessing. These somatic practices encourage and strengthen our innate capacities for creative expression, embodied communication, and inherent kinship with the living Earth.

The Gateway to Bring Present: Self-Breema Class

The Breema Center, Thu, Apr 30, Oakland

The simple, natural movements of Self-Breema exercises support body, mind, and feelings to work together in the direction of increasing receptivity, balance, and openness to life. This class features instruction and practice of Self-Breema exercises.

Pilates Props Class for Dancers

On the Move Physical Therapy and Pilates, Sat, May 4, Belmont

A strong dancer is a healthy dancer and Pilates is an amazing way for dancers to stay strong. This class will use small props that are easy to use at home. On the Move Physical Therapy is a clinic-studio dedicated to the injury prevention and rehabilitation of dancers and gymnasts.

Open Spaces, Open Places

Gather your friends and family and head out to these large-scale events.

LINES Ballet Training Program at Dancing in the Park SF

Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Sat, Apr 27, San Francisco

Part of the 10th Annual Dancing in the Park SF, presented by Mark Foehringer Dance Project|SF. This annual, afternoon-long, free, outdoor event will feature 30 dance groups or dance artists including professional dance companies, pre-professional programs and community groups from around the Bay Area.

Baile en la Calle: The Mural Dances

Brava! for Women in the Arts, Sun, May 5, San Francisco

This annual event takes over the streets and alleys of San Francisco's Mission District to celebrate and preserve its living cultural heritage! The Bay Area's most dynamic dance companies and performing artists interpret the District's murals through music and dance, alongside detailed narration by Precita Eyes Muralists docents.

Performance: The Wait Room

Flyaway Productions, Fri, Apr 26, San Francisco

A site-specific dance that engages the ideas of waiting and weighting, and blends oral history, dance, music and public art in an exploration of the physical, psychic and emotional burdens of prison for women with incarcerated loved ones.

Bulbfest 2019: Resilience

Love the Bulb, Sun, May 5, Albany

An outdoor dance and visual arts festival at the old shoreline construction debris landfill on San Francisco Bay, featuring more than 10 dance groups including contemporary, hip hop, tap, and ethnic styles, and more than a dozen artists creating outdoor sculptures, paintings, and interactive works. The festival will also include participatory artmaking, storytelling, facilitated dialogues and games dealing with climate change and the human relationship with nature.

Family Art Day

MACLA/Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, Sat, Apr 27, San Jose

A free festival for families with hands-on visual art activities, bilingual gallery tours, multicultural dance and music performances, dance classes, and yoga.

Spring Dance Festival

sjDANCEco, Sun, Apr 28, San Jose

Over sixty Bay Area dance organizations (from young children to professional companies and everything in between) present many styles of dance on the Eastridge festival stage during a non-stop 7-hour program.

Closing Weekend

Continue practicing, discovering, and experiencing dance! Let the end of the Bay Area Dance Week be the beginning of a life filled with dance.

Being Danced. An experiment in communal Play!

Being Danced, Sat, May 4, Emeryville

An improvisational, play-based somatic movement class geared towards igniting the creative spark. Being Danced provides a safe place for your inner child to be seen, expressed, and explored.


Berkeley Moving Arts, Sun, May 5, Berkeley

Join 15 of the East Bay's most exciting choreographers in an afternoon of informal performances. A different show every hour at Western Sky Studio in the vibrant Eighth Street Artists' Center.

Unleash Your Badass Diva

Shawnrey Notto, Sat, May 4, San Francisco

Unleash yourself with struts, walks, twists, turns, hips, stomps, voice, shouts, and a community of women! Drawing from diverse training in multiple dance styles, theater, meditation, yoga, and her experience as a professional speaker, Shawnrey creates as experience that utilizes movement as a powerful way to unleash your leadership.

Bhangra Dance Class

Dholrhythms Dance Company, Sat, May 4, Berkeley

Easy to learn movements that are broken down and accessible to all levels. Bhangra is a folk dance from Punjab, India and is truly one of the most joyful, exuberant, and contagious forms of movement.

Nordic Folk Dance

Nordic Footnotes, Northern California Spelmanslag, Sat, May 4, Menlo Park

Hambo, Polska, Springar, Schottis, and more! Dance to live, traditional music of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland. A one hour class will precede the dance party, and the dance party will include many dances that are easy to join in without prior knowledge.

DanceVisions Open House

DanceVisions, Sat, Apr 27, Palo Alto

An afternoon of half hour classes, an evening performance & dance jam. Includes Hip Hop, Contemporary, Yoga, Contact Improv, and a performance.

Full details, including exact times and locations are available online at

The History of Bay Area Dance Week

National Dance Week was founded in 1981 to increase awareness of dance and its contributions to our culture. The first Bay Area Dance Week (BADW) festival grew out of a public dialogue in 1998, when dance artists, administrators, and organizations came together to explore how best to spotlight Bay Area dance. The festival that emerged took a national initiative and imbued it with the innovative and inclusive spirit of the Bay Area. As the largest per capita center for dance in the US, the Bay Area's festivities have been the most extensive and best attended celebrations in the country since BADW's inception. Each year, over 200 dance organizations and artists present events during Bay Area Dance Week, involving more than 2,500 artists and 20,000 attendees. Dancers' Group presents the annual event.

Dancers' Grouppromotes the visibility and viability of dance. Founded in 1982, we serve San Francisco Bay Area artists, the dance community and audiences through programs and services that are as collaborative and innovative as the creative process. As the primary dance service organization in the Bay Area, we support the second largest dance community in the nation by providing many programs and resources that help artists produce work, build audiences, and connect with their peers and community.


Dancers' Group presents Bay Area Dance Week

April 26 - May 5, 2019

10 days featuring nearly 400 free dance events at locations throughout San Francisco, the East Bay, North Bay & South Bay


One Dance

Friday, April 26 at noon

Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco


More information about Bay Area Dance Week is available online at

ory of Bay Area Dance Week

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