Apply For Funds Towards Your Project

Dance Films Association recognizes that funding is crucial at all stages of film production. Whether you need to write a script, pay for a location, or secure an editing suite, our Production Grant can help you get started and get closer to finishing your film. Application is only open to DFA Members.

Participate

2019 DFA Production Grant winners announced!

  • Individual Membership with Dance Films Association: Click here to learn more about DFA Members’ benefits and sign up.
  • Project Description
  • Team Description
  • Timeline and Schedule
  • Budget and Budget Notes
  • Outline/Treatment, Storyboard, and/or Script
  • Current Needs to Complete Film
  • Visual Support
  • Submission by Deadline

We encourage creativity in applications, and require an outline, treatment, storyboard, or script, as well as visual support and a budget. Video work samples are not required, since projects in various different stages of productions are eligible to apply, though if available, it is highly recommended to include a video work sample. Additionally, we ask for a synopsis, artistic statement, team description, timeline, outline of needs, and distribution strategy. Your application should convey a comprehensive sense of your project. DFA is interested in supporting projects that demonstrate their ability to be completed and released. In the application, you will be asked if you would like the project to be considered for the Work-in-Progress Screening award (this does not disqualify your application from any monetary award).

Dance Films Association Members in good standing may submit their APPLICATION HERE

Monetary Award

The full recipient of the Production Grant receives an award of $2,500, and two recipients receive $500 honorary awards. Each recipient receives an opportunity with Dance Films to evaluate their project’s needs, followed by periodic check-ins as the films near completion.

Works in Progress Selection

One Production Grant recipient receives the Work-in-Progress Screening award: an opportunity to show their project at the Film Society of Lincoln Center as part of the annual Dance on Camera Festival. This special screening is designed to increase the film’s visibility and provide the filmmaker with audience feedback in a post-screening discussion moderated by an esteemed member of the dance film community. The selected film must be in the final in a stage of production that enable a screening of the project. In order to be eligible, applicants must be available to attend the annual Dance on Camera Festival for a presentation at Film at Lincoln Center. Please note: travel and accommodation are not provided.

Recipients

Written on Water

by Pontus Lidberg

Recipient of the full award in 2019

 

Synopsis

Happily married but haunted by an unresolved affair from her past, choreographer Alicia (Aurélie Dupont) plumbs the depths of her memories to create a new dance work about unfulfilled desire. Against the backdrop of an ageing theatre by the sea, she builds a sensual and naked work delicately held together by the threads connecting her dancers with each other and with her. Alicia soon finds herself fallen down the rabbit hole of her own creation, in love with the lead dancer, Giovanni (Alexander Jones), and the siren of her fictional work becomes the siren of her life. As she recounts her story to Karl (Pontus Lidberg), his own story brings an unexpected dimension to this exploration of longing and artistic creation. Written on Water is a sensuous and philosophical interrogation of the permeable boundaries between fiction and reality, muse and siren, male and female, and the mutability of the roles we play—Odysseus, sailor, siren—in our lifelong quests for connection, love and inspiration.

MONSTER NEWS FEED (working title)

by Cara Hagan

Recipient of an honorary award in 2019

 

Synopsis

This work follows a central character who, when overwhelmed and attacked by the media they consume (literally and figuratively) through digital and analogue means, decides to fight back to reclaim sound body and mind. Following an epic battle, the character makes their way through a magical portal that brings them to the land where they can heal. Born of the director’s research on device use, information addiction, and the effects of a constant stream of news on the body, this piece weaves aspects of science, shared cultural experiences and magical realism to make commentary on our ever-changing relationship to wellbeing.

Western

by Ellen Smith Ahern

Recipient of an honorary award in 2019

Choreography, performance & direction by Kate Elias & Ellen Smith Ahern
Cinematography & editing by Tori Lawrence
Music by Vicki Brown
Voices from community members of Wyoming’s Big Horn Region

 

Synopsis

Western experiments with storytelling by pairing women’s dancing bodies with the landscape and voices of a rural Wyoming community.  

The project integrates dance, film and storytelling to explore perceptions of the American West and American identity.  Set in rural Wyoming, Western depicts relationships shaped by great distances, manifest in both the vast expanse of sky and landscape and the immediate physical tension of two humans moving in and out of sight and contact. When layered with the voices of community members, the work becomes an experiment in inclusivity, creating space for diverse voices and bodies in a rich, challenging landscape while engaging modern dance to provide visceral access points to the truths and memories words touch upon.

 

OBSESSED WITH LIGHT: THE GENIUS OF LOIE FULLER

by Zeva Oelbaum and Sabine Krayenbuehl

Recipient of the Work-in-Progress Screening in 2019

 

Synopsis

OBSESSED WITH LIGHT will tell the story of Loïe Fuller, a visionary artist and technological trailblazer who overcame numerous hurdles to become one of the most famous dancers of her day. She launched Isadora Duncan’s career, promoted Auguste Rodin’s sculpture in the U.S. and inspired Picasso, Rodin and Toulouse-Lautrec, among others. Her passion for science and technology led her to extraordinary innovations in lighting and stagecraft. The film will be structured around the creation of a new dance by American choreographer Jody Sperling, interweaving stunning hand-tinted vintage footage of Fuller’s dances and interviews with contemporary artists and performers influenced by her.

Still Frame from FROM THERE TO HERE, Cinematography by Paulius Kontijevas

Written on Water

by Pontus lidberg

Recipient of the full award in 2019

 

Synopsis

Happily married but haunted by an unresolved affair from her past, choreographer Alicia (Aurélie Dupont) plumbs the depths of her memories to create a new dance work about unfulfilled desire. Against the backdrop of an ageing theatre by the sea, she builds a sensual and naked work delicately held together by the threads connecting her dancers with each other and with her. Alicia soon finds herself fallen down the rabbit hole of her own creation, in love with the lead dancer, Giovanni (Alexander Jones), and the siren of her fictional work becomes the siren of her life. As she recounts her story to Karl (Pontus Lidberg), his own story brings an unexpected dimension to this exploration of longing and artistic creation. Written on Water is a sensuous and philosophical interrogation of the permeable boundaries between fiction and reality, muse and siren, male and female, and the mutability of the roles we play—Odysseus, sailor, siren—in our lifelong quests for connection, love and inspiration.

Home Exercises. Sarah Friedland/Gabe Elder

Home Exercises

by Sarah Friedland

Recipient of the honorary award in 2016

MONUMENT by Zia Anger, Tobin Del Cuore and Adam H Weinert

MONUMENT

by Zia Anger, Tobin Del Cuore and Adam H Weinert

Recipient of the honorary award in 2016

DANSEUR. Scott Gormley.

DANSEUR

by Scott Gormley

Recipient of the Work-in-Progress Screening in 2016

Image of Trent D. Williams, Jr. in 'Black Stains'

Black Stains

by Tiffany Rhynard

Recipient of the full award in 2015

Lilt

by Josiah Cuneo

Recipient of the honorary award in 2015

United Skates

by Dyana Winkler & Tina Brown

Recipient of the honorary award in 2015

The Other Side of Stillness

The Other Side of Stillness

by Alexx Shilling

Recipient of the Work-in-Progress Screening in 2015

Panelists

Many thanks to our 2019 panelists: Chisa Hidaka, MD and Marta Renzi

Chisa Hidaka, MD

Panelist

Chisa Hidaka, MD is a dancer, dance educator and dance filmmaker. With partner Benjamin Harley, she directs the Dolphin Dance Project (www.dolphin-dance.org), which has produced several award winning short films featuring the collaborative dances co-created by wild dolphins and trained human dancers in the open ocean, as a touchstone to upend assumptions about our relationships with all the creatures with whom we share our planet. The debut film “Together,” (2010) was a recipient of the first DFA production grant.

 

Marta Renzi

Panelist

Marta Renzi’s short films have screened in festivals all over, and in 2017 she completed her debut feature film Her Magnum Opus. Called “a fearless explorer of unconventional sites” for her site-specific choreography, Renzi made 2 half-hour video dances for PBS in the 1980’s. She served on the DFA Board of Directors for a decade, and on a Production Panel once during that time when there were many fewer applicants!

 

Jonathan David Kane

Jonathan David Kane

Panelist

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.

Jennifer Newman

Jennifer Newman

Panelist

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.

Tiffany Rhynard. Photo by Alan Kimara Dixon.

Tiffany Rhynard

Screener

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.

Alexx Shilling. Photo by Julia McGhee.

Alexx Shilling

Screener

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 Film 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.

Jules Rosskam is an award-winning filmmaker, educator and interdisciplinary artist, whose practice investigates the means by which we construct individual and collective histories and identities. His films have shown internationally and stateside, including the Queens Museum of Art, Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, the British Film Institute, and Arsenal Berlin. His films have also broadcast on PBS and CBC. In June 2015, Jules mounted a solo exhibition of film and photography works at Action Field Kodra in Greece, in tandem with the Thessaloniki Biennale. With the support of The Center for Independent Documentary and the LEF Foundation’s Moving Image Fund, Jules is completing his fourth feature-length film, Paternal Rites, which will be released in January 2017. www.julesrosskam.com

Sylvie Vitaglione is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Cinema Studies at New York University, where she is currently working on a dissertation that investigates location shooting and site-specific practices in contemporary Screendance. Her next project explores the use of video as a tool for training the body in movement and fitness practices. Her chapter “Surface Tension: Experimental Dance Films and the Undoing of Urban Space” is forthcoming in April 2016 in Imaging the City: Art, Creative Practices and Media Speculations, edited by Steve Hawley and published by Intellect Books.

She has been an adjunct professor at New York University, The New School, Queens College and the College of Staten Island. She teaches classes on Choreography and the Moving Image, the History and Aesthetics of Music Videos and Documentaries and the Visual Arts. She has programmed screenings, panel discussions and workshops on the Tiny House movement, definitions of experimental film, and dance and documentary form for New York University, Gibney Dance Center and Dance Films Association. She trained in ballet and contemporary dance in Monaco, San Francisco, London and New York, and is a certified yoga instructor.

Erin Crawley-Woods received an MFA in Dance from the University of Maryland, College Park in May 2014. As a Graduate Teaching Assistant at UMD she directed Visible Seams, a site-specific sound/dance/video installation for the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, participated in national and international dance conferences and served as Education Fellow for the Dance Films Association. From 2007-2011 she was a Company Member and Director of Community Outreach at Keshet Dance Company in Albuquerque, NM where she taught and developed curriculum for Keshet’s nationally-recognized Outreach Program for Incarcerated Youth. She has performed in the US and abroad with Adriane Fang, Sharon Mansur, the Nancy Meehan Dance Company, Leslie Satin & Dancers, Sara Rudner & Company, Anneke Hansen, and the Irish Modern Dance Theater. In 2014 she participated in artistic residencies in Oulchy-le Chateau, France and at the Omi International Arts Center in Ghent NY. Crawley-Woods holds a Diploma in Wholistic Bodywork from the New Mexico Academy of Healing Arts and a B.A. in theatre, dance and French from Sarah Lawrence College. She is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance at Dickinson College.

Lorand Janos
Being a film director has allowed me to combine dance – the body in motion – with the love for my life, the moving image. Since 2013 I am also organizing Choreoscope – the International Dance Film Festival of Barcelona. My most ambitious project so far, Choreoscope is the celebration of dance on film, a step further in the exploration of body and cinematographic movement. Supported by the Dance Films Association New York, the festival aims to establish Barcelona as the dance film capital of the Mediterranean. I am always looking for new challenges, new collaborations and ways to expand my audiovisual language. As a media artist, I like to explore with new narrative forms and technologies, in order to, well, tell stories adapted to the 21st Century.

My main influences are the lifes and works of Andrej Tarkovski, Peter Greenaway, Federico Fellini, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Roy Andersson, Steven Soderbergh, DV8, Wim Vandekeybus, Joel Peter Whitkin, Jan Saudek, Man Ray, Chema Madoz, Klaus Obermeier, amongst many other visionaries.

Anna Brady Nuse
Anna Brady Nuse is an Artist Representative at Pentacle and Director of Pentacle’s Metro STEP and Movement Media projects. Nuse received her BFA in dance from California Institute of the Arts, and a graduate certificate in Media Management from The New School. Since 2007 she has published the blog Move the Frame (movetheframe.com) about dance and media and continues to develop services and programs for dance artists to make and distribute their work in media through Pentacle’s Movement Media. Nuse began her career in arts administration in 2001 when she became the assistant to the Director of Booking at Pentacle. Over the past 12 years she has worked in every department of the organization doing fiscal administration, office management, development, grant writing, and marketing. As a dance filmmaker, Nuse directs and choreographs her dance videos through her production company Straight to the Helicopter. From 2004-2006 she produced the cable access television series Move the Frame featuring dance films from across the country and around the world. She has curated numerous screenings and programs including Pentacle’s Kinetic Cinema series since 2008, the 35th Dance on Camera Festival, Danzlenz in New Delhi, the Moving Sounds Festival for the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York, the American College Dance Festival at Muhlenberg College, and the Festival of the Moving Body at SUNY Stonybrook. In 2008 her paper on curating dance film was presented at the Screendance Conference at the American Dance Festival. Currently Nuse is producing 14 short dance videos for Pentacle’s Metro STEP project, a program funded by DanceUSA’s Engaging Dance Audiences to help broaden and deepen audience engagement with dance.

Joe Locarro

Joe Locarro – director and producer has directed for stage, film and television. His film Finding Billy was an official selection of the 2012 Dance on Camera Festival and was also nominated for two NY EMMY Awards (best direction and best documentary), which has been broadcast nationally on PBS for the past 5 years. Recent credits include directing the series, Intelligence Squared Debates, (PBS National – 2 seasons), and the PBS series, Vine Talk, starring Stanley Tucci, along with directing numerous PBS specials. Some of his specials include: Remember Me with Parsons Dance Co & the East Village Opera Company, A Tale of Two Cities in Concert, starring Michael York, and three specials with Depak Chopra.

Joe specializes in filming and editing dance, theatre and music and he is currently directing the live web broadcasts from Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Allen Room. He has also directed numerous stage productions including Ragtime and Les Miserables.

Joe began his career as a dancer and choreographer, dancing with the Boston, Joffrey and Hartford Ballet Companies creating and choreographing 30 works for dance companies across the US. After a career in ballet, he went to perform on Broadway and has been in six Broadway musicals including; the role of ‘Enjolras’ in Les Miserables, the original cast of Ragtime and as ‘Munkustrap’ in Cats as well as appearing in films and television.

Joe brings his many years of performance experience to his work with artists and arts organizations. He continues to film and edit for 25 dance companies around the world as well as numerous Broadway productions and individual artists.

Greg Vander Veer
Director of Keep Dancing and Miss Hill: Making Dance Matter

Gabri Christa

Director of Quarantine

Matthew Seig
Media Specialist, Fiscal Sponsorship at New York Foundation for the Arts

Chris Henderson
Founder/Director of Moviehouse
Program Manager of Arts@Renaissance

Chisa Hidaka

Filmmaker; Director of Dolphin Dance Projects

Ellen Bar
Director of Media Projects at New York City Ballet;
Co-Creator/Executive Producer of NY Export: Opus Jazz

Amy Greenfield
Filmmaker

Robert Johnson

Dance Writer

Elena Martinez
Producer

 

 

Banner image courtesy ‘Written on Water’ (director Pontus Lidberg) 2019 Production Grant recipient.