Ready for a Dance-Through?

Live performance before an audience is way off in the very last stage of pandemic reopening plans. Each week more dance troupes explore new internet possibilities and now, innovative ways to coattail live dance on endeavors included in the early reopening stages. One company borrows a page from drive-in movie theaters as others announce their own YouTube channels and apps to download. Live dance performance won’t be back in theaters soon, but can be found alive, adapting, and finding fertile possibilities as SoCal tiptoes out of stay-at-home. Donations, tickets, and class fees help keep SoCal studios, companies and dancers dancing until we find out what the world, and the dance world, is like on the other side of the pandemic. Here are some performances shifted on-line, that one headed to a parking lot, and a memorial nod to the cancelled events that dancers and choreographers had hoped to share this week.

Donna Sternberg and Dancers. Photo by Paul Antico.


4.  Taking a double take

Contemporary dance meets South Asian classical movement as Donna Sternberg & Dancers and Rangoli Dance Company join their considerable forces for a choreographed shared zoom dance event crossing cultures at a social distance., Sat., May 16, 7 p.m., PDT, free. Info at https://dsdancers.com

Rangoli Dance Company. Photo by MS Iyanger.

3.  Mirror, Mirror

Taking his series Reflect to the net, well the internet, James MahKween explores the possibilities with Reflect:Through the Lens. E-mail James at mahkweenmethod@gmail for a secure password and protected link. The web link opens 30 minutes before the show.  Fri., May 15, 4:30 p.m. PDT. Suggested donations of $3-$8 can be sent via Venmo to @james—mahkween.

James MahKween. Photo courtesy of the artist.

2.  They don’t need no stinking’ passport!

Sad to say, the scheduled performances by Cuba’s vibrant Malpaso Dance Company are off, but one of the scheduled works, Sonya Tayah’s Face the Torrent launches the Music Centers viral series The Music Center Offstage. Interviews with the company founders with English subtitles as well as interviews with choreographers Ronald K Brown and Sonya Tayeh precede the performance. Another virtual performance on Friday morning is geared to students with a performance of 24 Hours and a Dog plus captioned interviews with company founders and dancers. Student show streams at; Fri., May 15, 11 a.m., free. Music Center Offstage at; Sun., May 17, 2 p.m. PDT, free. Info at

Malpaso Dance Company. Photo by Bill Hebert.

1. Garage Dancing 

Remember drive-in movie theaters? The remaining few are among the entertainment businesses included in the earliest stage of reopening targeted for later this week. Taking a page from the concept of a live audience, still social distancing by virtue of being inside their cars, Jacob Jonas The Company offer Parked, an Exclusive Drive-in Dance Performance, a series of solos performed in a parking garage with the audience seated in their vehicles with their headlights providing lighting for the dancing performed in the round. Choreographer Jonas developed the solos in collaboration with the individual dancers. Performers include Jerrese Adams, Georgia Bryan, Anthony Bryant, Joy Isabella Brown, James Blackston, Chandler Davids, Lamonte Goode, Marissa Labog, Miguel Lopez Jorge, Jacob “Kujo” Lyons, Emma Rosenzweig-Bock, Mike Tyus, Angelo “Vo Vera” Sapienza, Santiago Villarreal, Jill Wilson, Diana Worby and Patricia Zhou. Anyone who doesn’t luck out on the ticket lottery may have another chance to watch later as the one-night only performance being filmed.  A parking garage, address provided with confirmation of ticket; Sat., May 15. Tickets by lottery until 11:59 p.m. on Wed., May 13. Each ticket is good for one car. Suggested minimum donation $100.  Enter the ticket lottery at Info at

Jacob Jonas The Company. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Other Semi-Live Dance of Note:

Not even the internet can dim the energy of hip hop troupe Versa Style Dance which has been streaming interviews with figures like Rennie Harris, street dance classes, moving its annual Hip Hop Dance Festival to October, and now taking its 15th anniversary celebration on-line from Mon.-Sun., May 18-24. Details yet to come but likely to be posted at

Versa Style Dance. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Part performance and part virtual gala with catered dinner benefiting the Laguna Dance Festival.  Organizers arranged with three local eateries to deliver dinner of the diners’ choice (and nickel) followed by a streamed dance performance with a suggested $20 donation for the show. Zoom link provided on registration Sat., May 16, 6:30 p.m. PDT, suggested donation for the performance $20. Info at

Where to Find What’s Streaming

Companies are streaming past performances to compensate for cancelled spring seasons, and dance videos have gained more prominence whether a thread of solo dancers tag teaming a movement sequence, dancing on the roof, the backyard or their kitchen.  The popular long-running video competition Dare to Dance in Public curated by Sarah Elgart has been joined by her new challenge, Six Foot Distance Dances (details on how to submit). Starting May 14, Dance Camera West screens 60 films from its 2020 dance film festival on Ovid TV, details at  Dance Resource Center also has been tracking similar opportunities at

Dance Camera West. Photo courtesy of the artists.

On-line dance classes continue on zoom, instagram and other on-line platforms,  many classes free, low cost or suggesting a donation. One central, constantly updated source, LA Dance Chronicle, lists on-line dance classes including any cost and contact info. Grab a chair or clear off a corner of the room and use this time to dance.

Cancelled or Postponed:

Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles at Cal State Long Beach Carpenter Center for the Arts, Long Beach; Sat., May 16. Indefinitely postponed.

Ballet Folklórico de Los Ángeles. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Ironstone’s Initiation/Deviation at Highways, Santa Monica; Fri.-Sat., May 15-16.  Postponed.

Ironstone. Photo courtesy of the artists.

Dahlak Brathwaite’s Try/Step/Trip with choreography by Toran X Moore at REDCAT, downtown; Thurs.-Sat., May 21-23. Postponed.

Dahlak Brathwaite. Photo by Daniel Alcazar.

Shen Yun all SoCal venues in April and May have been postponed.

Shen Yun. Photo courtesy of the artists.

What are you looking for?