Dance in the Hudson Valley, Catskill and Berkshire Mountain regions has never been more vibrant. Many venues are presenting and supporting world-renowned, established dance companies and choreographers, as well as emerging artists, perched on the cutting-edge of the field. Several venues that historically presented only dance now feature other performing arts, visual arts, music, spoken word and culinary pursuits. Large spreads of land are emphasized and honored. Many organizations support dance residencies that nurture dance artists. Cognizant of community, venues reach out to and include the local populace. Dynamic dance programs educate hundreds of students. Enjoy dance in this beautiful region this summer!
Arts on Site Residency and Retreat Center, Kerhonkson, NY, Hudson Valley
Founded by choreographer Chelsea Ainsworth, the center is associated with Arts on Site, a performance venue, primarily dance, in NYC. The center offers uninhibited space in nature – 20 acres of forest adjacent to Minnewaska State Park – for artists, wellness practitioners, and outdoor enthusiasts.
June 15, July 13 and August 10, 9am-2pm: Community Yoga and Sweat Lodge
Art Omi, Ghent, NY, Hudson Valley
Located on 120 acres, Art Omi presents the work of contemporary artists and architects. Residency opportunities for international artists include dance from July 20-August 7. Ten accomplished dance artists come together for creative exchange. . The public is invited to free informal dance showings in order to experience residents’ creative process, collaborations, and development of ideas. Dates to be announced.
Ballet Collective, Millbrook, NY, Hudson Valley
Founded in 2010 by Troy Schumacher, New York City Ballet soloist, BalletCollective has collaborated with over 260 artists, choreographers, composers, musicians, designers, and dancers, to great acclaim.
July 8, 5pm and July 9, 3pm: features the first public performances of new ballets in-progress by Troy Schumacher and Omar Román De Jesús. Performed by eight NYCB dancers.
Bard SummerScape, Tivoli, NY, Hudson Valley
Described as “part boot camp for the brain, part spa for the spirit” (New York Times) and a “highbrow hotbed of culture” (Huffington Post), Bard SummerScape is an annual eight week-long arts festival held during the months of July and August. Since its inaugural season in 2003, the festival is held in tandem with the Bard Music Festival and features performances of opera, dance, theater, music, film, and cabaret.
June 23-July 2: Illinois, based on the album by Sufjan Stevens, directed and choreographed by New York City Ballet’s Justin Peck, narrative by Peck and Pulitzer Prize-winning, Jackie Sibblies Drury.
LayeRhythm, Bard Spiegeltent
In August 1973 the course of music history changed forever, and a subculture was born that would impact the 20th Century like no other. In celebration, NYC’s LayeRhythm, a collective of DJs, MCs, musicians, and dancers, take over the Spiegeltent for an extended After Hours jam session guaranteed to keep you moving.
Bridge Street Theatre, Catskill, NY, Hudson Valley and the Catskill Mountain Region
Bridge Street Theatre is a three-space performing and visual arts complex housed in a refurbished industrial building in the Village of Catskill, NY. Producer and dancer, Francesca Avani established a fusion belly dance program – Bridge Street Belly Dance – that has become an annual workshop and performance event in June.
June 17, 7:30pm: The Light Between the Trees, belly dance fusion performance
Catskill Mountain Foundation, Hunter, Tannersville, and Maplecrest, NY, Catskill Mountain Region
Since its inception in 1998, the Catskill Mountain Foundation (CMF) has presented over 700 performances of dance, music and theater, as well as film and artist residencies. Dance highlights: A tribute to Jacques d’Amboise featuring New York City Ballet dancers. The Orpheum Dance Program serves over 800 children; and the National Dance Institute’s two-week residency for students and the culminates in a performance on July 22.
July 9, 2pm: A Tribute to Jacques d’Amboise
The Hudson Eye, Hudson, NY, Hudson Valley
The Hudson Eye is an annual arts festival founded by choreographer Jonah Bokaer and presented by Jonah Bokaer Arts Foundation. Focused on dance, music, performance, film and visual art The Hudson Eye partners with local venues and features local artists to build and strengthen community.
August 25-September 4
Hudson Hall, Hudson, NY, Hudson Valley
Hudson Hall’s extensive year-long programming encompasses live performance, art exhibitions, city-wide festivals, and free community events and workshops that reflects and responds to the economic and cultural needs of its multi-racial, socio-economically diverse community.
August 26, 7pm, and August 27, 4pm: Jodi Melnick & Maya Lee-Parritz: Água Viva
The Kaatsbaan Cultural Park, Tivoli, NY, Hudson Valley
Kaatsbaan, founded in 1990 and located on 153 acres of open countryside, was initially focused on dance programming. It continues to present world-class dance but has broadened to include artists in theater, music, film, spoken and written word, and visual and culinary arts. Artist residencies and community classes offered.
Spring Festival, 2023 begins June 3: The Limón Dance Company and American Ballet Theatre Studio Company
Jacob’s Pillow, Becket, Massachusetts, Berkshire County
Established by Ted Shawn in 1931, Jacob’s Pillow is a 220-acre National Historic Landmark. A recipient of the prestigious National Medal of Arts, the organization is home to America’s longest-running international dance festival. The festival this year features nine weeks of performances in the Ted Shawn Theatre and on the outdoor Henry J. Leir Stage, as well as featuring special events, parties, workshops, exhibits, Talks, pop-up performances, and classes.
June 28-August 27: Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival
Middlebrook Arts Research + Residency Center, Jefferson, NY, Schoharie County
Middlebrook Arts Research + Residency Center, an accessible and inclusive dance, arts, community and wellness center, is set on nine acres of land amidst thriving wildlife and scenic mountains. The organization offers a robust artist-in-residence program, ongoing performances, programming steered by resident artists, an annual performance series, dance classes for adult and youth students, community gatherings, health/wellness retreats, and JoAnna Mendel Shaw’s Equus Projects.
Upcoming events begin June 4 with a performance at the Jefferson Memorial Society
Modern Accord Depot, Accord, NY, Hudson Valley
Founded by Choreographer Chase Brock, artistic director of The Chase Brock Experience, and Conductor Rob Berman in 2019, Modern Accord Deport (MAD) has worked with 150 performing artists through the MADarts residency program and partnerships.
New York Stage & Film, Poughkeepsie, NY, Hudson Valley
Since 1985, New York Stage And Film has served as a vital incubator for the arts. It is known as establishing a flexible, community-driven process for emerging and established artists and their work.
July 10-August 5, Summer Season. August 4-6: Princess Lockerooo and Harold O’Neal, Paradise Ballroom
Petronio Residency Center, Crow’s Nest, Roundtop, NY, Catskill Mountains
Crow’s Nest, a 175-acre haven perched in the Catskill Mountains, offers space for the dance community to, as Petronio states, “come and dream.”
The Pocantico Center, Tarrytown, NY, Hudson Valley
The Rockefeller Brothers Fund (RBF) advances social change that contributes to a more just, sustainable, and peaceful world. Residencies support artists in the creative process and in the presentation of their work emphasizing BIPOC, LGBTQ+, women, nonbinary and disabled.
June 27: Capulli Mexican Dance Company, August 4: Shamel Pitts & TRIBE.
PS21: Performance Spaces for the 21st Century, Chatham, NY, Hudson Valley
PS21 is a contemporary arts venue presenting innovative programming of leading and emerging artists in dance, music, theater, contemporary performance, and the multimedia arts situated on 100 acres of a former apple orchard. PS21 offers artist residencies and PATHWAYS free or at a low cost.
Paul Taylor Dance Company starts the season and continues with Czech circus, polka chinata (crouched polka), Guinean circus, and a 50th anniversary tribute to Hip Hop.
By Catherine Tharin.
Catherine Tharin danced with the Erick Hawkins Dance Company. She teaches dance studies and technique, is an independent dance and performance curator, is a reviewer and editor for The Dance Enthusiast and reports on dance for WAMC NPR. She lives in Pine Plains, NY, and NYC. See her choreography, November 4 & 5, 2023 at the Douglas Dunn Studio, NYC
Featured Photo: Dancer with Ballet Collective directed by Troy Schumacher. Photo by Meyrem Bulucek