Dance Metro DC’s Dance Journalism Project is a professional development program for dance writers in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
Throughout 2016 and early 2017, Dance Metro DC partnered with seasoned and emerging dance writers to launch the Dance Journalism Project. During this time period DMDC commissioned over 100 reviews for local choreographers. This program was suspended in 2017 to assess its impact. Results from the assessment led to a redesign of the program with a renewed focus on professional development for dance writers. The revised program launched in February 2018 in a partnership with renowned dance writer Lisa Traiger, offering a 10- week specialized training for 6 local writers. The success of its revitalization led to an expansion of the Dance Journalism Project. With DMDC’s mission to promote and support the DC dance scene, the necessity to illuminate the ever-growing dance community through dance journalism is more vital than before.
“… by creating more opportunities for audience engagement with their insightful and informed writings, the DC Dance Journalism Project directly impacts our community of arts patrons by strengthening their understanding and appreciation of the performances they already enjoy.”
— Amanda Blythe, Communications Director of Dance Place
Participating writers will work in a cohort environment through a series of six professional development sessions aimed at building writing and critical viewing skills for writing reviews and other articles covering local dance performances. This project will be directed by Lisa Traiger, a long-time dance critic, arts journalist and educator.
Cohort participants will attend local dance performances (often on weekends) and write critical reviews of the performance work. The cohort will meet to discuss ways to develop and enhance their writing through historical perspectives, unique viewpoints, and a heightened general discourse about dance in the D.C. area. Participants will receive individual feedback on their writing from the project director.
Following participation in this program, writers may be invited to contribute reviews of local dance performances on behalf of Dance Metro DC. These articles will be published on the Dance Metro DC website and a small honorarium will be provided for published articles. There is no guarantee that this program will lead to job opportunities or publication.
Primary goals for Dance Metro DC’s Dance Journalism Project include:
• To increase competency levels and experience for pre-professional dance journalists.
• To heighten the general public discourse about the professional field of dance in the metropolitan Washington, D.C. area.
• To provide a cohort of competent dance writers for the regional dance community over time.