15th Annual Dance Camera West Film Festival

It’s that time of the year again… As we begin morphing from Spring into Summer, ‘tis the season once again for film festivals. And of course this would include one of the West Coast’s premiere festivals exploring the unique, vital, and international genre of dance on film, the 15th Annual Dance Camera West Dance Media Film Festival.
While this year’s festival began formally last week on Saturday, June 11 at MOCA’s Ahmanson Auditorium in DTLA with The Past, Present & Future of Hip Hop (which included 3 feature length films that explored various street dance forms), DCW carries on in full force this week with an exciting array of shorts and one hour to feature length films from across the globe, as well as exhibitions/interactive installations, a live performance by local Los Angeles dance company Invertigo Dance Theatre, and more.

Image from hold (STILL), a selection from this year's Dance Camera West Film Festival
Image from hold (STILL), a selection from this year’s Dance Camera West Film Festival

Since its founding in 2001, Dance Camera West has always had its fingers on the international pulse of screen dance. During my tour of duty at DCW, from one year to the next I would always notice a similarity in the form, content, and approach of many of the submissions, that seemed to me to indicate that this vibrant art form and the international community that creates it are in fact very connected by a certain subconscious zeitgeist. With over 35 films from across the globe screening at DCW, I expect this year to be no different. Some highlights include:

  • The world premiere of Mine from LA’s Invertigo Dance Theatre
  • The west coast premier of Disportrait, about Spanish choreographer Nacho Duato in his new role modernizing the tradition bound Mikhailovsky Ballet in St. Petersburg
  • Horizontes, a film about three generations of National Ballet of Cuba’s classical dancers, an assortment of short films, documentaries, and World dance film screenings.

In addition to all the above, this year’s festival offers attendees a free opportunity to explore multi-media and interactive art installations on exhibit at the Royce Hall Dance Media Lounge, open Thursday June 16 through Saturday June 18 from 6 pm – 9:30 pm, and of course, DCW’s annual, free to the public, Dance-Along, which this year happens in accompaniment to the 80’s classic Xanadu.

Image from Dance-of-the-Nuerons
Image from Dance-of-the-Nuerons

Dance Camera West has always worked hard to connect “diverse cultures and environments through its exploration of dance on screen… effectively bridging the gap between the uniquely influential Los Angeles film community and the significant local dance populace.” Not just for dancers, choreographers, and dance enthusiasts, DCW’s presentation of dance films is a great resource for invigorating the creativity of producers, directors, and composers alike.
And with dance in general inherently being a wordless international language, a kind of poetry that connects us all regardless of sexual preference, ethnic, economic, religious, or socio-political backgrounds, how can we afford – especially in these most perilous of times – not to speak dance?
GoYou won’t be sorry.  And if you need more convincing, just take a glimpse at the trailer below.
For tickets, schedule, and further information on Dance Camera West Film Festival go to www.dancecamerawest.org

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