DFA & Earthdance Announce Programming for the IMAGINE Festival


Dance Films Association & Earthdance Creative Living Project Announce Programming for the IMAGINE Festival:
Film, Technology, and the Body in Action
September 29 – October 1, 2017 at Earthdance


September 6, 2017, Plainfield, MA — Dance Films Association (DFA) and Earthdance Creative Living Project (Earthdance) are proud to announce the lineup for the inaugural IMAGINE Festival: Film, Technology, and the Body in Action (IMAGINE), September 29 – October 1.

The Festival is the culmination of four artist residencies at Earthdance in the spring and fall of 2017. The IMAGINE Artists-in-Residence were selected from a pool of applicants for their innovations in the creation and presentation of new media, and for their use of technology and the body to interact and engage with individuals, communities, and the natural environment. These projects explore the potential of the “Selfie,” the ability of mobile phone apps to inspire tranquility, the sonic and visual world of orca whales, and our experience from the everyday to the astral, inside virtual reality.

IMAGINE’s programming also includes an evening of outdoor film screenings, an installation-based dance party on Saturday night, and workshops and discussions with participating artists throughout the weekend. Full-festival passes, day passes, and tickets to individual events are available for purchase here.

IMAGINE Festival Full Lineup

Emily Beattie/Cari Ann Shim Sham*: Dance Like No One is Whale Watching (Immersive Experience)
Dance Like No One is Whale Watching is an immersive experience and play space created to evoke the fantasy of life as an orca whale. Participants are guided through a series of mystic exchanges, collaborative games, and otherworldly performance, inspired by the mighty and mythical existence of orca whales.

Ellen Chenoweth: Escape (Interactive Mobile Phone App)
Escape is designed for anyone who has ever wanted to hurl their phone as far away as possible, anyone who checks their phone before going to the bathroom in the morning, and anyone who has been annoyed by the presence of a phone at a live performance. A downloadable mobile phone app will lead visitors on an exploration of the Earthdance grounds, designed to connect them to other users and to their surroundings.

Daphna Mero: Selfiesism inside out and Selfiesism, a Dance Duet (Video Works)
Two new experimental video works will question the current use of Selfie, challenge it, break it, and recreate it, suggesting a new instruction manual. The resulting image, free from conventional aesthetics, portrays a multidimensional self accompanied by site-specific and body-specific music.

KT Niehoff: Before We Flew Like Birds, We Flew Like Clouds (Immersive VR Installation)
Architect Cameron Irwin’s design for Before We Flew Like Birds, We Flew Like Clouds incorporates floating star-like balloons and immersive columnar spaces which shape a dreamy environment for viewers to activate. Four films, created using new virtual reality technology developed by Jacob Fennell, take audiences into the lived experience of the work’s main characters: Soyeon Yi (astronaut), Maurice Hall (in-line speed skater), Shevanthi Daniel (near death experience survivor), and Michael Grady (para-rower).


Sarah Friedland: Home Exercises (22 minutes)
Home Exercises is a short dance film and hybrid documentary investigating the gestural habits and choreographies of aging individuals at home.

André M. Zachery: Untamed Space (12 minutes)
Untamed Space was shot on location at the Weeksville Heritage Site in Brooklyn, NY and uses a timeless consideration on Afrofuturism to look at ways Black spaces have been created, have been lost, yet can begin again in Diaspora. Directed, choreographed, and edited by Renegade Performance Group artistic director André M. Zachery, it is shot in collaboration with cinematographer LaMont Hamilton.

Tom Weksler: Shinrin-yoku (10 minutes)
Shinrin-yoku is a Japanese word which refers to taking a short trip or a visit to the forest. Literally, it means “Forest Bathing.” Shot on location at Earthdance, the film features dance and choreography by Mayumu Minakawa, video by Kenneth Kao, and music by Levi Gershkowitz and Julie Becker.

Workshops and Discussions

Artists-in-Residence Conversation
IMAGINE Artists-in-Residence will talk about their artistic process working with new technologies, giving insight into their vision, current challenges, and artistic history. Knowledge will be shared about methods of working with new media as well as innovations in building installations and presenting immersive experiences.

Moving Portraits: Portable Projection Performance Experiments
In this workshop by Jeanine McCain, participants will use portable, handheld projectors to experiment with possibilities for projection surfaces and performance interactions. Small groups will work together to create short video pieces as a basis for live performance installations.

Contemplative Dance Practice
Join Contemplative Dance Practice (CDP), a participatory movement and meditation practice that explores embodied awareness. Created in the 1970’s by Naropa University’s Barbara Dilley, CDP is now practiced internationally. Colleen Bartley, who first learned the practice from Nancy Stark Smith in 2005 at Earthdance will lead this session.

Closing Contact Improvisational Jam with Camera
Earthdance has long been a national and international hub for the exploration and development of Contact Improvisation. For the close of IMAGINE, partake in a Contact Improvisation Jam guided by festival filmmakers that incorporates the camera as a partner. Special thanks to Northampton Community Television for providing cameras.

Collaborating Partner: Northampton Film Festival

Full festival pass-holders for IMAGINE receive complimentary tickets to the screening of Seconds: An Exhibition of International Super Shorts at the Northampton Film Festival (NFF). IMAGINE festival attendees are also invited to the NFF Exposing Next Realities exhibit, curated by the Public VR Lab on Saturday, September 30 at A.P.E. Ltd. Gallery in downtown Northampton. As part of this collaboration, NFF pass-holders may attend select IMAGINE programs free of charge.

The Northampton Film Festival (NFF) was founded by Northampton Community Television (NCTV) in 2015 and takes place September 27 – October 1, 2017. NCTV is a community media center and public access TV station that provides the local community with equipment, training, and expertise. NFF brings international and local narrative films, documentaries, and shorts to Northampton, curated by a committee of media professionals and film lovers. In 2016, NFF partnered with Brookline Interactive Group to create The Public VR Lab, which features free virtual and augmented reality demos.


Earthdance is an artist-run workshop, residency, and retreat center located in the Berkshire hills of Western Massachusetts. We provide a dynamic mix of dance, somatic, and interdisciplinary arts training, with a focus on sustainable living, social justice, and community.


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 conducts 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.

The IMAGINE Residency and Festival is co-presented and produced by Earthdance and DFA, and is co-founded by Federico Hewson.

Participating artists are available for interviews from September 22 – 29. For press inquiries and interviews contact:
Dance Films Association
Rebecca Hadley
Communications Associate
(374) 505-8649

For questions about tickets and accommodations, please contact:
Earthdance Creative Living Project
Niri Halperin
Office Manager
(413) 634-5678 x1


Dance Films Association receives generous year-round support from our members, 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, AbelCine, Wave Farm: Media Arts Assistance Fund, The Harkness Foundation for Dance, Dance and New Media Foundation, Brown-Forman, Funders For LGBTQ Issues, Gibney Dance Center, and Materials for the Arts. For more information visit www.dancefilms.org and follow @dancefilms on Twitter.

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