SAFEhouse Arts’ ninth annual

 summer performance festival

SPF9 postcard headerWednesday July 6 – Sunday July 10, 2016

ODC Theater • 3153 17th Street, San Francisco

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Tickets available May 1, 2016

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SAFEhouse Arts, a nonprofit organization working to incubate new performing artists through residencies, workshops and performance opportunities, has announced the schedule for its ninth annual summer performance festival, SPF9, featuring ten programs over five days. SPF9 runs Wednesday, July 6 to Sunday, July 10 at ODC Theater in San Francisco.


“With 20 solo and ensemble groups, SPF9 is our biggest festival to date,” says SAFEhouse Arts Executive Director Joe Landini. “It is a testament to the continued vitality of the Bay Area’s burgeoning dance scene, a cultural lab for new movement and performance ideas, and new modes of theatricality.”


Landini has choreographed several pieces for past SPF showings; this year’s festival, however, marks his return to the stage as a dancer in more than a decade. He is collaborating with Amy Lewis on a solo about his personal experiences in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood. With concept and direction by Lewis and choreography by Landini, this work-in-progress is titled SOMA Now and Then, and will show on Friday, July 8 at 9 p.m., and Saturday, July 9 at 2 p.m.


Another highlight this year is an experiment in site-specific performance development led by artist and teacher Mary Armentrout, who will lead a four-day workshop, being here now: expanded compositional practices, to take place on the campus of ODC, June 27-30. Five individuals participating in the workshop will then present their work as part of Armentrout’s showing in SPF9. For more information on the workshop and how to register, see ODC’s event description page.


SPF9 will also celebrate the 15th Anniversary of World Dance Fusion with a free reception following the 5 p.m. performance on Sunday, July 10.


With the exception of Armentrout and August, each of whom will perform in ODC’s intimate Mott Studio, all of the festival programs will take place in ODC’s B.Way Theater. The running time of each of the ten programs, double bills included, is approximately 45 minutes.


Tickets for SPF9 are $20 per program, $15 in advance. A discounted price of $10 per program is available with the purchase of tickets to two or more programs. For reservations call 415-863-9834, or online visit ODC’s ticket page.


For all press inquiries, contact John Hill at


Wednesday 7pm • Thursday 9pm
Thursday 8pm – FREE lobby installation* (AECM only)
Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement will present a work-in-progress from She Went, a three-year-old project developed in collaboration with Arletta Anderson, Keryn Brieterman-Loader and Karla Quintero. She Went springs from Cunningham’s interest in feminist theory and in “subverting the formal tools and container of dance to focus on the guttural weight and sublime of the female body.”
On Thursday, July 7 at 8 p.m., as a prelude to She Went, the company invites audiences to the lobby of ODC Theater to experience a performance installation.
*Admission to the installation is free, but advance registration at is recommended.


Alyce Finwall Dance Theater presents Haven, a duet performed by Katie Meyers and Isabel Rosenstock, and set to music by György Ligeti and pianist Lo Chau. Since its founding in 1999, Alyce Finwall Dance Theater has created over forty original works both for the stage and film, earning praise for the “fierce fluidity” and “brooding surrealism” of its choreography (Minneapolis Star Tribune).

Wednesday 8pm •  Sunday 8pm  PROGRAM A
 Mary Armentrout
 Chris Evans with Lisa Carroll
 Sheena Johnson
Friday 8pm • Saturday 8pm
 Julie Caffey
 Melanie Cutchon
 Tyler Eash with Nathalie Brilliant
Experimental artist and teacher Mary Armentrout brings her expertise in site-specific performance to this year’s festival. In the week prior to SPF9, June 27 – 30, Armentrout will conduct a workshop titled being here now: expanded compositional practices (offered through ODC) in which participants will create site-specific works within smaller spaces throughout ODC’s two-building campus. Five  artists will join Armentrout and present their creations as part of  her showing at SPF9.
The artists will be split into two programs. Program A, which includes Armentrout, Chris Evans with Lisa Carroll, and Sheena Johnson, will be presented on Wednesday, July 6 and Sunday, July 10. Program B shows Friday, July 8 and Saturday, July 9, featuring  Julie Caffey, Melanie Cutchon, and Tyler Eash with Nathalie Brilliant.
*takes place in ODC’s Mott Studio

project agora | THE ANATA PROJECT
Wednesday 9pm • Thursday 7pm

Project agora presents a duet created and performed by company founders Kara Davis and Bliss Kohlmyer. Set to an original score by Karl Digerness, Convers(at)ions employs structured improvisation to explore the state of “liminality…of being in-between…of conversion.” As this final word suggests, the piece takes inspiration from puns and other language play as a spur to physical invention. Also included is a solo piece choreographed by Kara Davis, danced by Hannah Vaughan.


Under the direction of founder Claudia Anata Hubiak, five-year-old The Anata Project presents notjustmoreidlechatter, a quintet that takes inspiration from ideas in Tibetan Buddhism. The word anata describes the “ever-changing and constantly shifting mind,” and the piece offers a perspective on the difficult practice of mindfulness. The ensemble includes Arletta Anderson, Julie-Ann Gambino, Yuko Monden, Macio Payamo and Ryan Wang.

Friday 7pm • Sunday 5pm
FREE post-show 15th Anniversary Reception following Sunday 5pm performance
Under the direction of Katy Alaniz Rous, World Dance Fusion has performed on five continents, blending over two dozen culturally specific styles from Samba to Persian Classical, Bharatanatyam to Russian Character and Ballet. For SPF9, the company draws on an array of American urban dance styles in the world premiere of Tribute to Tribe, celebrating the 25th anniversary of the release of one of the highest-selling albums of the 1990s, A Tribe Called Quest’s hip-hop classic The Low End Theory.
Following the presentation on Sunday at 5 p.m. there will be a free reception in honor of WDF’s 15th anniversary.

Friday 9pm • Saturday 2pm
Since 2007, Amy Lewis has been making dance in the Bay Area under the name of Push Up Something Hidden (P.U.S.H.). For SPF9 she delves into the evolution and gentrification of San Francisco’s South of Market district, as seen through the eyes of Joe Landini. SOMA Now and Then presents one man’s journey through the neighborhood’s back alleys and secret rooms, as SOMA queer culture shifts from the raunchy 1980s into today’s tech boom. With concept and direction by Lewis and choreography and performance by Landini, the piece will premiere as a site-specific walking tour of the neighborhood in November.
 (cont’d next column)

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(cont’d from prev column)


Friday 9pm • Saturday 2pm


Since the early 90s, Steamroller has presented works addressing the spread of HIV/AIDS within minority communities, and under the direction of Jesse Bie, the company has earned a reputation for athleticism and irreverence. For SPF9 Steamroller will present Legendary Children: Revisited, a work which asks, “What, if any, are the differences between queer bodies and straight bodies? And how have expressions of queerness changed over time?” Situated on “the penultimate disco dance floor,” Legendary Children is set to songs by Matmos, Rufus Wainwright and Jimmy Somerville.

Saturday 3:30pm • Sunday 7pm
Peter & Co. was launched in 2014 as a platform for the choreographic work of Peter Cheng. For SPF9, Peter & Co. will present two short works of contemporary ballet: the first, titled Transverse Course, is a study in “linear progression and regression emanating from a predetermined spatial circuitry.” The second is a solo titled Interstice.


ka·nei·see|collective, Also launched in 2014, is a Bay Area performing arts ensemble directed by Tanya Chianese. For SPF9, the collective will present the world premiere of Masses, featuring an ensemble of a dozen dancers and original choreography by Chianese. “Masses explores what it can feel like to live in an overpopulated urban world that desperately needs but sorely lacks compassion for the strangers among us.”

Saturday 5pm • Sunday 9pm


Dance Theatre of San Francisco presents an excerpt from their 30-minute dance lm Unspoken, directed by RJ Muna. It features the company’s nine dancers in choreography by D Montalvo and music by local composer Daniel Berkman. The lm premieres at Vogue Theater October 7-13 2016, and it will be the first in a series of collaborative films with RJ Muna.
Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Joslynn Mathis Reed founded Mathis Reed Dance Company in 2014. A recent graduate of Mills College’s MFA program in Dance Performance and Choreography, Reed will present Autonomic, a work exploring the idea of freedom. Responding to a work-in-progress showing last fall, 

Saturday 6pm • Sunday 6pm
Lucia August is a queer-identified dance artist who weaves together spoken word and movement in works celebrating the “non-standard” dancer’s body and age. For SPF9, she will present a semi-autobiographical work titled standingOUTstanding. “For many decades, I encountered tremendous resistance in the dance world regarding my larger-than-average dancer’s body, and at age 50, I freed myself of negative beliefs to dance professionally,” says August. StandingOUTstanding is set to music by Eric Kupers.
*takes place in ODC’s Mott Studio

Saturday 7pm • Sunday 2pm
JoAnn Selisker received an MFA in Performance Art at California College of the Arts. For SPF9, she will perform a solo titled What’s Best for You, presenting scenes “from one woman’s awkward, ridiculous and beautiful struggle to love, lose love, and keep on living.”


Sarah Bush Dance Project is the creative vehicle for Sarah Bush whose influences include ballet, modern, hip-hop, jazz, Afro-Caribbean and contact improvisation. Since she began performing in the Bay Area in 1997, Bush has earned numerous accolades: “a modern dance bellwether” (SF Weekly), “kicking ass with the choreography” (Margaret Cho). For SPF9, she presents Reach, inspired by the lives of three trailblazing women who spent time in Oakland – Ina Coolbrith, Gertrude Stein, and Isadora Duncan.

requisitedance | BRANNIGAN/EISEN
Saturday 9pm • Sunday 3:30pm

Founded in 2007 by Jenna Monroe and Michaela Shoberg, both alumnae of San Francisco State University, requisitedance presents Relative Perspective, two connected pieces investigating family dynamics during major life events.


Brannigan/Eisen is the duo of Khala Brannigan and Amelia Eisen, alumnae of the LINES Ballet Training Program. For SPF9, Brannigan/Eisen will present a quartet featuring live music by Adam Starkopft. The piece, titled Together, explores the idea of home from multiple points of view.



Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement Wednesday 7pm • Thursday 8pm & 9pm

Photo by Yvonne Portra

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Alma Esperanza Cunningham’s work moves from the ironic to the stark and intensely intimate. Cunningham pulls from different movement forms to create a language that is both authentic and unique. Fascinated with third wave feminism/post-third wave feminism and popular culture, Cunningham deconstructs the female form. Her work has been presented at Dixon Place, Movement Research at Judson Church, Dance Theater Workshop’s Fresh Tracks.  

After moving back to San Francisco from New York in 2001, she formed her company Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement (AECM). Alma has been an Artist in Residence at ODC, Jon Sims Center for the Arts, and in 2004/05, partnered with Robert Moses in CHIME (Choreographers in Mentorship Exchange), a program of the Margaret Jenkins Dance Company. She was the recipient of a 2004 GOLDIE (SF Bay Guardian’s Outstanding Local Discovery) Award.

Following the birth of her daughter in 2007, Alma took a 5-year break from making dances, returning in 2013 with a focus on female solos that have informed her current work SHE WENT, an experimental project made in collaboration with a community of performers.

Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement's website

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Alyce Finwall Dance Theater Wednesday 7pm • Thursday 9pm

photo by Robbie Sweeny

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Alyce Finwall, originally from St. Paul, MN, has made dances since 1994, developing a uniquely creative and theatrical style, noted for having an “impressive and accomplished choreographic symphony” by the SF Examiner and a “fierce fluidity in performance and a brooding surrealism in the choreography” by the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

She founded Alyce Finwall Dance Theater in 1999, and in its seventeen-year history, produced over forty original works and collaborated with a multitude of diverse artists for both stage and film. Alyce’s “wide-ranging dance career” began after a brief hiatus from dance to study art (with a focus on painting and printmaking) and communications theory at Hamline University. She danced professionally with the Minneapolis-based avant-garde company, Ballet of the Dolls. In her six years with the company, she performed in over 20 original ballets and became its first-ever guest choreographer. She also danced with Rincones & Company in Washington, D.C., and studied with the Cullberg Ballet in Sweden (under invitation from artistic director Lena Wennergren-Juras), the Cunningham Dance Company (via a travel/study grant from the Jerome Foundation), as well as with many teachers of ballet and contemporary techniques in NYC, Minneapolis, D.C. and San Francisco.

Alyce’s work has been presented at such venues as P.S. 122, The Joyce SoHo, Dance Theater Workshop (New York Live Arts), Dixon Place, 92nd Street Y on 42nd Street, Cunningham Theater, White Wave Theater, The Cowell Theater, The Southern Theater, ODC Theater, The Garage, the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and American College Dance Festival. She is thankful and fortunate to have received support from the McKnight Choreographic Fellowship, continued support from the Jerome Foundation, as well as awards from the Zellerbach Family Foundation and Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

She holds an MFA in Dance from Mills College where she was awarded the Liatis Foundation Award. She has also taught and choreographed for college and pre-professional programs such as the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, Radford University, Cedar Crest College, Mission College and Mills College. Currently Alyce serves as an adjunct professor of dance at Santa Rosa Junior College.

Alyce Finwall Dance Theater's website

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Amy Lewis/Joe Landini Friday 9pm • Saturday 2pm

photo by Lynne Fried

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Amy Lewis began presenting choreography in the Bay Area in 2005, after receiving a BA in theater from UCLA and an MFA in dance from Mills College. Her work has been supported by dance festivals, choreographic programs, residencies, and commissions, including Women’s Work, West Wave Dance Festival, Dumbo Dance Festival, SwapFest, ODC’s Pilot Program, Mills Dance Alumni Association, Meridian Gallery, The Garage, SAFEhouse Arts, and Shawl-Anderson’s Youth Ensemble. In addition to project-specific collaborations, Lewis has developed a lasting relationship with composer Bill Wolter and choreographer/dancer Sonsherée Giles.

In 2007, Lewis founded San Francisco-based Push Up Something Hidden (P.U.S.H.), a dance company that thrives on collaboration and interaction with artists of all mediums and uses performance to celebrate a flawed humanity.  Artistic Director Lewis begins each project by scrutinizing history, a practice which turns ordinary life events into extraordinarily fated occurrences that can be blamed on social structures that provide limited choice. In the performances presented by P.U.S.H., the rethinking and retelling of individual biographies and historical events –public or private– has influence over the form and structure of the movement, creating a dichotomy between unemotional, pattern-driven choreography, and linear, dramatic stories. By combining narrative with abstract dance, P.U.S.H. intends to objectively uncover the emotional undercurrent embedded in life experiences, bringing the ‘private’ into the public domain of performance. Ultimately, Lewis strives to instill sensitivity to another’s opinions and emotional needs by asking the viewer to look at the world through an alternate life. P.U.S.H.’s focus on the collaborative process has led Lewis to be fully invested in the Bay Area artist community. It is Lewis’ belief that “it takes a great number of artists making and supporting work to move the field forward.”

Joe Landini has produced, curated, choreographed and performed in the Bay Area for 25 years. He received his BA in Choreography from UC Irvine and his MA in Choreography from the Laban Centre UK. Landini has presented his work in San Francisco at Dance Mission Theater, ODC Theater, the Cowell Theater and Z Space; throughout California in Marin County, Sacramento, Santa Cruz and Laguna Beach; in Santa Fe; and internationally in London and Mexico City.

In 2007, he founded of SAFEhouse for the Performing Arts (Saving Art From Extinction) and ran TheGarage until its closure at the end of 2014. In 2015 he opened performance venue and rehearsal space SAFEhouse Arts @ 1 Grove, where he currently serves as Executive Director for RAW (resident artist workshop),  SPF (summer performance festival), and West Wave Dance Festival.  In 2012 he received the GOLDIE Award for Dance from the San Francisco Bay Guardian.

Amy Lewis/Joe Landini's website

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Brannigan/Eisen Saturday 9pm • Sunday 3:30pm

photo by Kyle Patrick O'Brien

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Khala Brannigan began her training at age seven in Santa Fe, NM with Moving People Dance Theatre. In the years 2011-2013, she attended the Lines Ballet Training Program in San Francisco, CA, and studied intensively with local and non local artists. Since then, she has participated in RAW (resident artist workshop) at SAFEhouse Arts and premiered “unannounced” at the 24th Annual West Wave Dance Festival in September 2015. Khala has danced with Joe Landini, Sandrine Cassini, and Amelia Eisen. She currently dances for SOULSKIN Dance, teaches as a part of HEArt with LINES Ballet, and hopes to invigorate the bay area arts through her work and with fellow collaborators.

Amelia Eisen, born and raised in Nevada City, CA, is a freelance dance artist and choreographer based out of San Francisco since 2008. She. She is a 2010 alumna of Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet Training Program and continued on to study, create and perform with Alambrado Danza in Florence/ Trieste, Italy, and Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company in Israel’s Kibbutz Ga’aton. Amelia has performed original works by Kara Davis’ project agora, Robert Moses, Joe Landini, Khala Brannigan, Alexandra Kamerling, Maurya Kerr, Ben Bach, M & N Dance Company and more. She has been a resident artist at SAFEhouse for the Performing Arts since 2013 where she has premiered several original works for RAW (resident artist workshop), SF’s West Wave Dance Festival, and now SPF. Additionally, Amelia holds a Holistic Health Coach certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

Brannigan and Eisen have joined forces for SPF9 to establish a collaborative atmosphere among dancers and musician to create a whole piece, ‘together’ as a group. Including each individual’s movement, voice and sound, the purpose of this piece is to feel at home while still pushing boundaries and developing oneself.

Brannigan/Eisen's website

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Concept o4 Saturday 5pm • Sunday 9pm

Natasha Adorlee/Johnson, artistic director​ was born in Huntington Beach, CA and raised in Overland Park, Kansas. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a BA in English. Natasha trained with American Ballet Theatre, Miller Marley School of Dance and Voice, SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, and was an inaugural member of Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet training program. She has performed works by George Balanchine, Gerald Arpino, Alonzo King, Robert Moses, and Yannis Adoniou and is a former member of Robert Moses’ Kin. Natasha currently dances with international touring company ODC/DANCE based in San Francisco. As artistic director of Concept o4, Natasha has created dance for film and live performance and her work began presentation in film festivals in 2014. She has choreographed for the European Tanzsommer Festival and Regional Dance America and she is also a singer and music producer with the group Saint Tiimbre. She is appreciative of her friends and family, and for their continued support. 

Concept o4's website

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Dance Theatre of San Francisco Saturday 5pm • Sunday 9pm

photo by Josh LaCunha/RJ Muna

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Established in 2013, Dance Theatre of San Francisco is a non-profit organization that was designed to uplift the artists, audiences, and youth of the Bay Area with a remarkably unique repertoire created by exceptional choreographers. The company encourages innovation and supports both established and emerging dance-makers as it continues to produce programs of exciting and dynamic contemporary ballet.

After dancing professionally in the Bay Area for many years, DTSF founder Annie Henry developed a deep appreciation for the San Francisco dance community and local artists. She believed there was room here for an organization that features numerous choreographers in order to produce a fresh repertoire.

In June 2013, with a small board of directors and eleven dancers, Dance Theatre of San Francisco was born. After just four months in existence, DTSF produced a successful Debut Program in October 2013 at the popular ODC Theater in San Francisco. With four performances over three days, each evening had a packed house, and audiences were extremely enthusiastic about the repertoire and the company’s unique mission.

Since then the company has been quickly gaining popularity, especially since June 2015 when DTSF hired its first ever Artistic Director, Izzy Award-winning choreographer, Dexandro Montalvo.

Dance Theatre of San Francisco's website

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JoAnn Selisker Saturday 7pm • Sunday 2pm

photo by Jennifer DeAngelis

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JoAnn Selisker received an MFA in Performance Art at California College of the Arts and has performed in a variety of venues, including the Minneapolis Fringe Festival, San Rafael’s Falkirk Cultural Center, and in San Francisco at Theater Artaud, The Marsh, Jon Sims Center for the Arts, and ODC Theater.

JoAnn Selisker's website

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Joslynn Mathis Reed Saturday 5pm • Sunday 9pm

photo by Lynne Fried

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Joslynn Mathis Reed hails from Detroit Michigan. Her lifelong passion for dance has taken her on a journey that includes performing with Aretha Franklin as a teenager, studying West African dance in Ghana as an undergraduate, and continuing to teach dance to a wide range of students over the past 15 years. Joslynn’s movement and choreography is driven by a high-energy fusion of hip-hop, modern and ballet forms, resulting in her own unique style. Joslynn holds a B.A. in Dance/Theater Arts from California State University, East Bay and an MFA in Dance Performance and Choreography from Mills College in Oakland, CA. She founded Mathis Reed Dance Company in 2014.

Joslynn Mathis Reed's website

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ka·nei·see|collective Saturday 3:30pm • Sunday 7pm

photo by Rob Best

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ka·nei·see|collective debuted its first home season, Cookie Cutter, to sold-out audiences and the front page of the SF Chronicle that read “accessible and provocative, as well as unafraid to meld innovation with time-honored dance conventions.” (Nirmala Nataraj, Jan 2015). Directed by Tanya Chianese, ka·nei·see | collective is a Bay Area performing arts ensemble creating vitalizing, accessible contemporary dance that promotes finding humor, appreciation, compassion, and awareness in our increasingly technological existence. The company has been presented at various venues including ODC Theater, Z Space, Shawl-Anderson Dance Theater, Joe Goode Annex, Dance Mission Theater, and Fort Mason Center, as well as toured to Los Angeles, CA.

ka·nei·see|collective's website

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Labayen Dance/SF Saturday 5pm • Sunday 9pm

photo by Andrew Faulkner

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Labayen Dance/SF is a celebrated contemporary ballet company founded in 1994; it is dedicated to nurturing the artistic activities and the choreographic work of multi-award winning choreographer, Enrico Labayen. The company has performed nationally and abroad at venues such as the Delacorte Dance Festival (NYC); Lincoln Center Out of Doors Festival (NYC) ; The Singapore International Arts Festival; Odyssey Arts Exposition (Singapore); Internationales Tanz Theater (Bonn, Germany); Dance For Tolerance (Bielefeld, Germany); Dance with Objects Festival (Potsdam, Germany); Stuttgart Tanz Festival (Germany); Amman International Theater Festival (Jordan); Filipino American Arts Exposition (USA); Music and Arts Festival @ Columbia University’s Miller Theater (New York City, USA); Lesbian and Gay Dance Festival (San Francisco, USA); Human Rights International Arts Festival (San Francisco, USA); Men Dancing Fest (San Francisco, USA); Autumn Dance Series (San Francisco, USA); Bay Area Dance Series (Oakland/San Francisco USA); International Theatre Festival (Philippines); UNESCO-International Theatre Institute’s Theatre World Theatre Olympics (Philippines); Man!festival for Social Change (USA); National Queer Arts Festival (USA); Mov(Men)t Male Choreographers Festival; Down & Dirty Dance Series (USA); Body Positive (Manila).

Enrico Labayen (Director/Choreographer) has received awards, fellowships & citations from the Beaux Arts Society of New York as “Dancer of the Year”; The Dutch Ministry of Cultural Exchange Fellowship Award, the Asian Institute for Liturgy and Music Residency Fellowship, the “Choreographer of the Year” award by the Manila Chronicle (Philippines);The Isadora Duncan Award for “Outstanding Achievement in Choreography” (1996, USA); the Filipinas Achievement Award (USA), The City of Manila’s Pillar of Art and Culture for Dance; an ABS-CBN International; Cultural Caregiving Travel Grant to Australia; Guest lecturer at University of New South Wales, Sydney; Residency at DjerassiArtists Residency (US), Rimbun Dahan Artist Residency (Malaysia).

A grantee of California Arts Council, SF Arts Commission, California Artist Series, SF Grants for the Arts, International Theater Institute, National Commission on Culture & Arts, The Cultural Center of the Philippines, Arts International in cooperation with the John D. Rockefeller Grant & Mellon Foundation, The Zellerbach Family Foundation, CLOROX Foundation and the Rainin Foundation.

He has been named one of the Filipino American Faces of the Century – “…one of the Filipino Americans whose lives celebrate all that the Filipino American is capable of and have truly shaped our history in the United States and given the Filipino Americans and its community the inspiration to realize their dreams.” Mr. Labayen received the Isadora Duncan Award for Choreography & most recently, Outstanding Achievement in Visual and Costume Design for his design and work entitled “en-Gulf-ed”.

Labayen Dance/SF's website

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Lucia August/Everybody Can Dance Saturday 6pm • Sunday 6pm

photo by Lynne Fried

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Lucia August is a choreographer, performer, dance educator and therapist. For many decades, she encountered tremendous resistance in the dance world regarding her larger-than-average dancer’s body. At age 50, August finally freed herself of negative beliefs to dance professionally. Since 2010, she has been showing her choreography in a number of Bay Area locations, including queer dance festivals at Dance Mission and CSUEB, and at Works in the Works, the annual choreographer’s showcase in Berkeley, CA. In 2014, August took her first one-woman show, standingOUTstanding to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Scotland, earning two four-star reviews. Her performance video was selected for inclusion in the Fringe Performance Archives, housed at the National Library of Scotland.

Lucia August/Everybody Can Dance's website

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Mary Armentrout Projects Wednesday 8pm • Friday 8pm • Saturday 8pm • Sunday 8pm

photo by Ian Winters

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Mary Armentrout is an experimental choreographer, performance artist, videographer, teacher, curator, and the director of the Mary Armentrout Dance Theater. She calls her genre-mixing works ‘performance installations’, and one of her site-specific works recently won an Isadora Duncan Dance Award. Working primarily with repetition and duration, her works problematize aspects of intentionality and presence. Her work has been presented throughout the Bay Area, as well as across the US and the UK, Europe, and China. Additionally, Armentrout organizes the Dance Discourse Project, an on-going series of artist-curated discussions of the Bay Area dance scene, and co-curates performance at The Milkbar in Richmond.

For more information and how to register for Armentrout’s site-specific workshop which will be used to create the performance pieces for SPF9, being here now: expanded compositional practices, visit ODC’s  event description page.

Mary Armentrout Projects's website

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Peter & Co. Saturday 3:30pm • Sunday 7pm

photo by JCO Photography

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A Bay Area native from Fremont, California, Peter Cheng began formal dance training while pursuing his B.F.A. in Dance at the University of California Santa Barbara. Studying ballet under Valerie Huston, Delila Moseley and contemporary dance under Nancy Colahan, Christopher Pilafian, Christina McCarthy and Tonia Shimin, Peter performed in over twenty works including eight faculty-choreographed dances while at UCSB. Peter also created seven works in various university and Santa Barbara Dance Alliance concerts. Mr. Cheng was awarded the Matthew Alan Plaskett Scholarship, Patricia Sparrow Memorial Fund Scholarship, and Tonia Shimin Award for Excellence and Promise in the Field of Dance.

Since 2006 Peter has trained extensively with the foremost contemporary and ballet artists in the San Francisco Bay Area including summer intensives at ODC/Dance and Alonzo King LINES Ballet, dancing works by KT Nelson, Brenda Way, Alonzo King, Amy Seiwert, and Sharon Eyal among others.

He has studied with Yannis Adoniou, Marina Hotchkiss, Carmen Rozestraten with further training with a number of Bay Area choreographers and teachers including: Augusta Moore, Sandra Chinn, Janice Garrett, Hope Mohr, Kate Weare, Kahz Zmuda, Liezl Austria, Lee-Wei Chao, Enrico Labayen, and Britt Juleen. Peter has also had the opportunity to study under the tutelage of Summer Lee Rhatigan, Doug Leatheren, and Alex Ketley of the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance.

Peter & Co. was launched in 2014 as a platform for Mr. Cheng’s choreographic work.

Peter & Co.'s website

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project agora Wednesday 9pm • Thursday 7pm

photo by Andy Mogg

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Kara Davis, is a Visiting Assistant Professor at Mills College Dance Department and has taught and choreographed at LINES Dominican University since 2005. She danced for Atlanta Ballet and Ohio Ballet and is a founding member of KUNST-STOFF and Janice Garrett & Dancers, both of whom she danced for ten years. Her choreographic and performance work has received multiple Isadora Duncan awards and nominations. Her work has been presented at ACDA Nationals, YBCA, SF MOMA, SF International Arts Festival, Arizona State University, sjDANCEco, & Scottsdale Community College. She earned her MFA from Hollins University in 2013.

Bliss Kohlmyer has danced and toured internationally with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, The Sean Curran Company, Janice Garrett and Dancers, Robert Moses’ Kin, and The San Francisco Opera Ballet. Recently, Bliss has been commissioned by the nationally recognized Robert Moses’ Kin, Jacksonville Dance Theatre, and Moving Current Dance Collective. She received her MFA in Dance from the University of Washington in 2011 and is currently an Assistant Professor of Dance at the University of South Florida.

Along with Kara Davis, she established project agora in 2006. The company was in residence at the prestigious Bates Dance Festival summer ’15, premiered the work Threshold, Suspended… at the San Francisco International Arts Festival, performed at Dance Gallery Festival and Breaking Ground, and Summer ’16 will be presented at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

project agora's website

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requisitedance Saturday 9pm • Sunday 3:30pm

photo by Brian Monroe

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requisitedance seeks to further inspire discussion about the fundamental need for art through performance, collaboration and educational outreach.  Founded in 2007 by Jenna Monroe, Travis Santell Rowland and Michaela Shoberg, requisitedance uses humor, wit and emotional insight along with fluid technique to craft stories exploring transformation and self-identity.  Inspired by a shared passion for movement, a driving force to create innovative work and a respect for fellow artists, requisitedance takes the best of past experiences in order to sustain a collective that is responsible and artistically meaningful.

requisitedance's website

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Sarah Bush Dance Project Saturday 7pm • Sunday 2pm

photo by Lisa Harding

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Sarah Bush creates and performs feminist dance for all types of environments. She has a B.A. in Dance and 36 years of studio training in a wide range of techniques. Audiences may recognize her from performances with Olivia Travel, Dance Brigade, and Michigan Women’s Music Festival. She has been a guest choreographer for Axis Dance Company and a guest performer with Bill T. Jones. Her work has been recognized with awards from Curve Magazine and Bay Area DanceWatch.

Sarah Bush Dance Project (SBDP) is an Oakland-based contemporary dance company formed in 2007. SBDP promotes innovative artistry, community interaction and feminist ideals through the creation and presentation of multimedia dance. It’s core values are: Feminism, Diversity, Excellence, Authenticity, Accessibility, Empowerment, Versatility, and Innovation.

Sarah Bush Dance Project's website

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STEAMROLLER Dance Company Friday 9pm • Saturday 2pm

photo by Lynne Fried

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In 1993, a loosely knit group of artists came together to create guerrilla performances to address the spread of HIV/AIDS to other communities (women, people of color). STEAMROLLER Dance Company is currently under the direction of founding member, Jesselito Bie. In addition to various SF parking lots, STEAMROLLER has also presented work in the Bay Area Dance Festival, the 1996-2001 In the Street Festivals, the 1996-2001 San Francisco Lesbian and Gay Dance Festivals, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Festival of Bay Area Dance, Asian American Dance Performances, Highways Performance Space in Santa Monica and will participate in this year’s San Francisco International Arts Festival

Jesselito Bie moved to the Bay Area in 1992 to dance with the High Risk Group and has since performed with many local companies such as Scott Wells and Dancers, Stephen Pelon Dance Company, Cid Perlman/Nesting Dolls, Kulintang Arts and Erika Shurch Performance Project. He has also received awards for his choreography from the SF Bay Guardian, the 360 Award from CSUEB for all around Outstanding and Outrageous Queer Dance Work, and the Tobie from Bay Area Dance Watch for Best Male Solo. He was also a recent participant in ODC Theater’s Sandbox residency program.

STEAMROLLER Dance Company's website

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The Anata Project Wednesday 9pm • Thursday 7pm

The Anata Project is a contemporary dance company based in San Francisco founded by artistic director, Claudia Anata. The company is based on the word ‘Anata’ in Tibetan Buddhism, described as ever-changing and constantly shifting mind. The Anata Project produces dances and dance films that take a genuine look into the unguarded mind and heart.

The Anata Project's website

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CANCELED World Dance Fusion Friday 7pm • Sunday 5pm 

CANCELED World Dance Fusion's website

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