Boston Dancemakers Residency Call for Applications PDF Print E-mail

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Boston Dancemakers Residency
Call for Applications 2019-2020 Season

Program Overview
The Boston Dancemakers Residency, produced through a partnership between Boston Center for the Arts (BCA) and Boston Dance Alliance (BDA), is designed to support experienced dancemakers in the development of original work by providing research, development, rehearsal, financial and production resources. These resources include a regional three-day retreat, six weeks of intensive studio time, discounted rehearsal space, a dancemaker stipend and rehearsal pay for up to six dancers.

The Boston Dancemakers Residency supports Boston-area dance artists who are striving to develop, adapt or reinvent their creative process. Designed to promote artistic growth, the residency seeks artists with strong choreographic foundations who are driven by curiosity and a bold vision to reach beyond their existing practice. The residency will serve as a laboratory for ideas that are in the exploratory phase and need dedicated time and space to be fully realized. BCA and BDA encourage dancemakers to take risks, invest time and focus in working with their dancers, build the skills to develop and advance original ensemble work, and dive deeply into their creative process.

Two Boston-area dancemakers will be invited to participate in the residency program. Each will be awarded:


  • A three-day, two-night rehearsal retreat at a regional center within 200 miles of Boston.
  • $100 per day for up to seven people: six dancers, collaborators and choreographer while on retreat.
  • Lodging, food and reimbursement for mileage to the retreat center.


  • Six weeks of free, exclusive rehearsal and performance space at BCA for an intensive rehearsal and development process.
  • Additional discounted rehearsal space in Artist Studio Building at BCA for $10/hour, as available, at any point within the residency year. Grantees are also eligible for discounted rehearsal space at Lyric Stage Studio, subject to availability.
  • A stipend of $1500 to be used at the dancemaker’s discretion.
  • A stipend up to $1000 for a collaborating artist in a non-dance discipline to partner with the dancemaker.
  • Payment for up to six dancers for an extended rehearsal period. Rehearsal hours are paid at $12/hour for up to 72 hours.
  • Two hours of business and career consulting with Debra Cash, Executive Director of Boston Dance Alliance.
  • Two hours of consulting with staff from New England Foundation for the Arts.
  • Administrative, production and marketing facilitation by Andrea Blesso Albuquerque, Director of Dance at Boston Center for the Arts.
  • Twelve hours of artistic mentorship from Andrea Blesso Albuquerque, Director of Dance at Boston Center for the Arts.
  • Peer feedback sessions with fellow resident dancemakers.


  • A fully produced performance or work-in-progress showing at Boston Center for the Arts during the final week of studio time.
  • Lighting and production assistance from a technical director.
  • Access to lighting and sound equipment for showcase performance including risers, pipe and drape, lighting instruments and PA system.
  • Photographic or video documentation of the performance.
  • Printed promotional materials produced by BCA such as postcards, showcase programs, posters, press outreach.
  • Promotion in BCA and BDA program listings and website.
  • Resident dance artists may be invited to perform brief excerpts of their work at the BCA Ball, BDA Gala or other organizational events.
  • Resident Dancemakers may be invited to perform as part of BCA curated events at HUBweek or through the Late Night series at the Museum of Fine Arts during their season with us.


  • Lead artists must be residents of the Boston metropolitan area (within route 495).
  • Ensemble/company must include a minimum of three local dancers.
  • Choreographer must have created original work for a minimum of four years and have presented the equivalent of one full evening (60 minutes) of their work within the past two years.
  • Students enrolled in either undergraduate or graduate programs in any field are not eligible.
  • Dancemakers/choreographers who have been awarded the BDA Rehearsal and Retreat Fellowship for the 2017–2018 season or the Boston Dancemakers Residency for the 2018–2019 season are not eligible to apply for the 2019–2020 season.
  • Once awarded a Boston Dancemakers Residency, artists must wait at least three full years before reapplying for the program.
  • Applicants must be current BDA members at the time of application and throughout the residency period.

The residency must be used to develop new work and the majority of rehearsal time should be dedicated to the proposed project. Selected dancemakers are required to show original work in a performance or work-in-progress showcase at the culmination of their residency, and to list Boston Center for the Arts and Boston Dance Alliance in connection with work that is created or developed during the residency. Choreographers must attend at least one rehearsal by each of the other 2019–2020 resident dancemakers for peer feedback sessions.

Additional Artist Information
For the retreat, the choreographers may bring up to six dancers, or may choose to bring a minimum of three dancers and up to two artistic collaborators, such as a designer, dramaturg or musician. Selected artists will be provided a list of prior retreat sites upon the announcement of their award. Choreographers may also identify alternate regional retreat sites to be negotiated and approved by BDA and BCA.

Rehearsals for the intensive will be held in Martin Hall in the Calderwood Pavilion on the BCA Campus. The studio is 33ft x 46ft with hardwood sprung floor, windows and mirrors.

How to Apply
Applications are due on Friday, March 1, 2019 by 5 pm

This program is open to a range of dance genres and movement-based artists. We welcome applications from choreographers based in the Greater Boston area (within route 495). Artists of color, artists whose original work is based on culturally specific dance forms, and those working in non-proscenium formats are encouraged to apply. Dancemaker stipend for the intensive does not include transportation or housing.

Applicants will be notified of their acceptance by the middle of April 2019. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

Please apply through this online form:

Applications will be evaluated on:

  • The quality of work shown in the video sample and overall level of professionalism displayed.
  • Proposed concept of work to be developed during the residency.
  • Unique use of studio space/time. The residency provides multiple avenues of creation. We are interested in how you will use this unique opportunity.
  • Potential impact on the development of the artist’s career and risk taken in the creative process.

The 2019–2020 season will include two residencies through the same call for applications. Dancemakers may select six weeks of intensive rehearsal time within the dates listed below.
October 21–November 3, 2019
January 6–February 2, 2020
March 16–April 5, 2020
May 18–June 15, 2020

Andrea Blesso Albuquerque, Director of Dance, Boston Center for the Arts ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) and Debra Cash, Executive Director, Boston Dance Alliance ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) are available to answer questions and provide additional information about the residency.

There will be an Information Session and Studio Tour on Tuesday, January 29 from 6–7:30 pm at the Calderwood Pavilion at BCA.

About Boston Center for the Arts
Boston Center for the Arts is the nexus of the arts in Boston, fostering the development of contemporary visual and performing arts and convening artists and audiences to create, explore and celebrate all creative disciplines. An integral part of the cultural fabric of the city of Boston, Boston Center for the Arts utilizes its historic campus in the vibrant South End to present world-class exhibitions and performances, provide affordable work space, engage cultural consumers throughout the region, and nurture artists with the resources to take risks and develop new art works.

About Boston Dance Alliance
Boston Dance Alliance builds capacity for dance by identifying and creating shared resources, information and productive partnerships to help dance flourish across the Boston metropolitan area and New England region. BDA is an independent service organization representing dancers, choreographers, teachers, presenters, allied arts and cultural professionals, arts journalists and scholars, wellness and health providers and dance enthusiasts brought together across dance genres and geographies. BDA strives to increase cultural equity and access to dance for diverse communities, build dance audiences and promote quality and sustainability.

This special opportunity is made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Aliad Fund at The Boston Foundation, Molly McDonald, John G.F. Ruggieri and John D. Lam.



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