Dare to Dance in Public: Round 4… Meet the Judges

Well here we are again, it’s Round 4 of Dare to Dance in Public Film Festival (D2D: Round 4) and once again I am excited to introduce this year’s esteemed panel of judges. Each judge is selected for a mixture of professional experience, acumen, and their unique individual perspective, and each year we engage in an astute, lively, and challenging discussions to decide on the winning films… it’s one of my favorite parts of D2D, and I can absolutely tell that this year will be no exception.

We are so honored to have each of them!

Peter Chu

Born in the Bronx, NY & raised in Cocoa Beach, Florida, Peter began his training as a competitive gymnast, later nurturing his artistry at Dussich Dance Studio. Upon graduating from The Juilliard School, he performed with BJM Danse, EZdanza, Aszure Barton & Artists, Kidd Pivot, and in Celine Dion’s Vegas spectacular, A New Day.

In 2008, Peter formed a Las Vegas project based dance company, chuthis, which showcases the work of Chu & his collaborators. Chu has created works for Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Staatstheater Augsburg, Charlotte Ballet II, Orlando Ballet Theatre, Hubbard Street 2, Giordano Dance Chicago, SYTYCD, Houston MET Dance, New Dialect, SALT Contemporary Dance, HSPro, & The Juilliard School, among others.

This season, Chu premiered works for Giordano Dance Chicago and Gibney Dance Company, and choreographed for Cirque du Soleil’s Vitori in Malta. He will also premiere a creation for Paul Taylor Dance Company, and develop a new work with his own company, chuthis.

E. Moncell Durden

E. Moncell Durden, is a dancer, educator, practitioner, historian, ethnographer, author, and documentarian. An assistant professor of practice at the University of Southern California Kaufman International School of Dance, specializing in the pedagogical practices of Afro-Kinetic memory social dance forms over the last four centuries.

Durden’s knowledge and practice of social dances date back to his early childhood learning dances of the early 20thcentury from his parents and other elders. Durden performed with Rennie Harris Puremovement for 10 years; held a 7 year appointment at Drexel University, a 5 year appointment at Wesleyan University and a 2-year appointment at the Yale School of Drama. Moncell has taught at the University of Bogota Colombia, and Balletakademien in Sweden, just to name a few. His published works appear in Jazz Dance: A History of the Roots and Branches and SAGE Encyclopedia of African Cultural Heritage in North America.

His first book, Beginning Hip-Hop Dance, is published by Human Kinetics. His first documentary, The History and Concept of Hip-Hop Dance, was published by Dance-Time Publication, His documentary appearances include Transmission, a new documentary on jazz dance, The Choreography of Comedy, a look at the history and influence of eccentric dance, and Why We Dance, a documentary that explores our nature and desires to dance. Durden’s second documentary will go deeper in the roots of African American dance. He is currently developing a lecture performance, a podcast and writing a new book titled Dancestry: The Dance, the People, and the Culture. Moncell is also writing a new article titled “This is How We Jazz” for a new jazz book coming out.

Kristy Edmunds

Kristy Edmunds is an artist, curator, frequent keynote speaker and currently the Executive and Artistic Director of UCLA’s Center for the Art of Performance (CAP UCLA), a leading presenter of contemporary performance on the West Coast. In recognition of her contribution to the arts, Edmunds was named a Chevalier (Knight) de L’Ordre des Arts et des Lettresby the French Government in 2016 and was the inaugural recipient of the Berresford Prize by United States Artists (USA) in 2018.

Edmunds’ previous positions include Founding Executive and Artistic Director of the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art (PICA) and Time Based Art Festival (1995–2005); Artistic Director for the Melbourne International Arts Festival (2005–2008), Head of the School of Performing Arts at Victorian College of the Arts/University of Melbourne, and Deputy Dean for the College; and Consulting Artistic Director for the now critically heralded Park Avenue Armory in New York (2009–2012).

Rosalynde LeBlanc Loo

Rosalynde LeBlanc Loo holds a BFA from the State University of New York at Purchase and an MFA from Hollins University. She has spent over twenty-years in dance as a performer, choreographer and is now an Associate Professor and current Chair of the Dance Program at Loyola Marymount University (LMU). Prior to her academic career, Rosalynde was a member of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company (1993-1999), Mikhail Baryshnikov’s White Oak Dance Project (1999-2002), and the Liz Gerring Dance Company (2003-2006). In addition to performing the work of various independent choreographers, Rosalynde has also danced in various opera productions, including productions with New York City’s Metropolitan Opera and for the 250th Mozart Celebration in Salzburg, Austria. She has had her writing published in the leading international dance periodicals, Dance Magazine and Ballettanz, and her choreography has been presented in venues around the country. She continues her work with Bill T. Jones in the preservation of his legacy and pedagogy, most notably, directing the Educational Partnership between the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company and LMU’s Dance Program. She is also producing and co-directing, with acclaimed cinematographer, Tom Hurwitz, the documentary film, Can You Bring It: Bill T. Jones and D-Man in the Waters. The film was awarded an Arts and Cultural Heritage grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Graves Award in the Humanities. It is due out in 2021. https://www.d-mandocumentary.com/.  In 2020, Rosalynde was inducted as an honorary member into the Jesuit Honor Society, Alpha Sigma Nu.

D2D welcomes each of the judges!

The theme for this year’s D2D is appropriately entitled PANDEMANIA! and comes in part from an initiative we came up with in the very beginning of the pandemic, with a prompt for dance and film artists to use the situation of sheltering in place as an opportunity to create. We received films from Russia to Europe to Africa and beyond.

Please enjoy one of them, Nicola Hepp’s beautiful film RESET, below:

What are you looking for?