Dance Films Association, Inc. (DFA) announces the recipients of the 2016 Production Grant

For Immediate Release

New York, NY (February 21, 2017)  – Dance Films Association, Inc. (DFA) announces the recipients of the 2016 Production Grant. DFA strives to support dance film by providing filmmakers with key resources and opportunities to realize their projects at any stage in production, from conception to distribution. Historically, a $2,500 grant is awarded to a filmmaker each year to help close the gap between their dance film project and the resources they need to complete it. This year’s recipient of the full $2,500 award is From There to Here, directed by Sydney Skov and Janique Robillard. In response to a continued increase in applications, two $500 honorary awards are also granted, this year to Home Exercises by Sarah Friedland and Monument by Tobin Del Cuore. In 2015, DFA added a Work-in-Progress Screening award, selecting one film to screen at the Dance on Camera Festival at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. This screening is intended to generate visibility for a dance film in the making and bring process-driven events to the festival. This year’s recipient of the Work-In-Progress award is Danseur by Scott Gormley.

Recipient of DFA’s Production Grant: Full Award ($2,500)
From There to Here
Directed by: Sydney Skov and Janique Robillard
Stage: Post-Production
Length: Short
This cinematic portrait showcases a courageous group of women moving against gender inequalities in India, empowering survivors of trafficking and violence through dance movement therapy. Read More.

Recipient of DFA’s Production Grant: Honorary Award ($500)
Home Exercises
Directed by: Sarah Friedland
Stage: Post-Production
Length: Short
Home Exercises is a cross between an experimental dancefilm and an omnibus home workout video, exploring the gestural habits of aging individuals in their homes. Read More.

Directed by: Tobin Del Cuore
Stage: Post-Production
Length: Featurette
A group of young dancers living inside of an abandoned 1930’s ballroom retrace the footsteps of the pioneers of dance history. Read More.

Recipient of DFA’s Work-in-Progress Screening at the 2017 Dance on Camera Festival
Directed by: Scott Gormley
Stage: Production
Length: Feature
A documentary about the gender stereotypes, challenges and bias that young men face in ballet.  Read More.

About DFA’s Production Grant
Dance Films Association recognizes that funding is crucial at all stages of film production. The Production Grant is designed to help filmmakers secure resources that will help with any aspect of the process, such as paying for locations, permits, editing software, and more. The recipient of the Production Grant receives $2,500 to allocate toward services and resources under the guidance of DFA Staff in order to successfully complete their dance film project. DFA staff begins with an in-depth consultation with the filmmaker to determine their needs, and checks in periodically throughout the process to continue supporting the project, whether by coordinating screenings in NYC or spreading the word about their progress via social media.

Past films supported by DFA Production Grants include Klasse, Miss Hill: Making Dance Matter, The Promise, The Birch Grove, and Feelings Are Facts: The Life of Yvonne Rainer. DFA will be seeking the next round of applications for the Production Grant in October of 2017. Click here to learn more about the Production Grant and view past recipients’ works.

2016 Production Grant Panelists
Jonathan David Kane
Jonathan David Kane combines light and sound to convey narratives. His work as a film director, producer, and cinematographer has screened at festivals and institutions worldwide including Sundance, Toronto International, SXSW, Rotterdam, Clermont-Ferrand, Contemporary Art Center (New Orleans), New World Center (Miami), CERN (Geneva), the MoMA, and Brooklyn Museum. To learn more, visit:

Jennifer Newman
A New York based dance and theatre artist and producer, Jennifer Newman has been an artist in residence at Yale University, Central Connecticut State University, The Field, Mabou Mines, Baryshnikov Arts Center, 651 Arts, and Sisters Academy. She has taught workshops across the United States as well as in Sweden, South Africa, China, and Mexico. Her class focuses on classical and modern technique with an emphasis on performance and expression with a specialization in helping students to create personal work inspired by individual experiences. She is currently the Producing Director of Heartbeat Opera and Compagnia de’ Colombari and is on faculty at Central Connecticut State University.

2016 Production Grant Screeners
Tiffany Rhynard
Tiffany Rhynard is a filmmaker, choreographer, and activist. Having created over 60 works for stage and screen, Rhynard’s choreography, dance films, and documentaries have been presented nationwide and internationally. Her dance for the camera pieces have screened at film festivals such as the Dancing for the Camera at the American Dance Festival and at ScreenDance Miami where she won First Prize for her film Invisible Queens. Her documentaries focus on social justice issues and her first doc Little House in the Big House won best documentary at the Central Illinois Feminist Film Festival. Her most recent documentary Forbidden: Undocumented and Queer in Rural America premiered at Outfest LA summer 2016 where it received the Freedom Award for promoting justice and equality in the LGBTQ community. Forbidden was also awarded the first ever Social Justice Film Award from the Southern Poverty Law Center. Rhynard is currently in post-production for Black Stains, a docu-dance film collaboration with choreographer Trent D. Williams, Jr. that addresses dynamics of black male identity in the 21st century. The project received a Production Grant from Dance Films Association. To learn more, visit:

Alexx Shilling
Alexx Shilling creates live and filmic dancescapes that invigorate memory and investigate transformation. Shilling prioritizes the body as her primary research site, utilizing improvisation as both a generative tool and a performance practice. Each work yields its own unique process that includes thematic research and active engagement with cameras, costume and material objects, sound and site/place, resulting in an integrated bricolage of multiple logics existing at once, a new logic, forms yet unseen. As artistic director of alexx makes dances, her original choreography has been presented nationally and internationally, through residencies at the Millay Colony, Hammer Museum and Ebenbökhaus / Jewish Museum München, and with generous support from institutions including the Center for Cultural Innovation, Dance Films Association, UCLA and CHIME. After re-locating from New York to Los Angeles, she has been collaborating as a performer with Victoria Marks since 2010 and is currently dancing with Ros Warby, Laurel Jenkins, Alison D’Amato, and Richard Rivera/PHYSUAL (New York). In 2013, Alexx received her MFA in Choreography from UCLA’s Department of World Arts & Culture/Dance. She teaches at the Loyola Marymount University Dance Department’s Wellness Lab and is a current Artist-in-Residence with Los Angeles Yiddishkayt’s HELIX Project. To learn more, visit:

Danseur Work-in-Progress Screening Moderator
Ellen Bar
Ellen Bar attended the School of American Ballet from the age of eight. In 1998 she was asked to join New York City Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet, and was promoted to Soloist in 2006. In 2005, Ellen was part of the original cast of the NYCB revival of NY Export: Opus Jazz, a 1958 ballet by Jerome Robbins. Along with fellow Soloist Sean Suozzi, Ellen conceived of and produced a present-day, on-location film adaptation of the ballet. After winning an Audience Award at the 2010 SXSW Film Festival, NY EXPORT: OPUS JAZZ aired on BBC Four and PBS’s Great Performances series. In 2011, after 13 years as a professional ballerina, Ellen became the Director of Media Projects at NYCB, where she is responsible for developing and producing the company’s film and video content. In less than two years, she has worked with some of the best young filmmakers in New York to produce and/or direct over 30 short documentary films for the company. BALLET 422 is her first feature-length documentary.

Dance Films Association
Dance Films Association, Inc. (DFA) is dedicated to furthering the art of dance film. Connecting artists and organizations, fostering new works for new audiences, and sharing essential resources, DFA seeks to be a catalyst for innovation in and preservation of dance on camera. Currently, DFA is actively seeking to broaden its audience via new media initiatives and membership drives, to support cutting edge approaches to dance documentation, and to expand partnerships with schools, arts partners, media sites, and other institutions. Alongside the Dance on Camera Festival, DFA offers year round programming such as the Dance Film Lab, Dance Films Presents, and Capturing Motion NYC and additionally acts as a Fiscal Sponsor and offers a Production Grant.

For inquiries, please contact:
Dance Films Association
Rebecca Hadley
(374) 505-8649

Dance Films Association receives generous year-round support from our members, AbelCine, Brown-Forman, The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council, The Office of the Mayor Bill De Blasio, and Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl, as well as The New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support is provided by Jody and John Arnhold, Emerging Movement Council, Wave Farm: Media Arts Assistance Fund, The Harkness Foundation for Dance, Dance and New Media Foundation, Funders For LGBTQ Issues, Gibney Dance Center, and Materials for the Arts.

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