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LA Dance History

I have always been a history enthusiast. The more I learn, the more I recognize how much more there is to uncover and explore. In early 2020, I worked on the early seeds of a History of Dance in LA exhibition, which was never fully realized (and I'm sure you can guess why!), but the project's research sparked a deep curiosity in me, and I have become committed to uncovering the narratives of those who have moved and grooved on this land we now know as: Los Angeles, the city of angels.  


One day, perhaps I'll become a LA Dance scholar, but in the meantime, I offer you this collection dance history links - specifically connected to LA. As an entry point, here are a few lenses to consider how one navigates dance history… via style or genre of dance, via choreographer lineage, via live performance venue(s), via neighborhood/region, via movie director, via television shows, or chronologically. Each link is a WORLD of artists and creators who contributed to the tapestry that is our current dance ecosystem. 

The following is NOT (even close to!) all inclusive. Recognizing that there’s always more, please email me to connect and/or share your findings and stories. 

Via Choreographer

The Roots of American Modern Dance:

Hollywood, Film, and Television: 

Did you know that CHOREOGRAPHERS have a new labor organization — The Choreographers Guild

Via Performing Arts Venue or Studio

1931 — The Ford Theatre opens

1945 — Studio Theatre at St. Denis Building opens

1964 — The Music Center opens

1979 — Debbie Reynolds Dance Studio opens (closed October 2018, but not without a fight!)

1982 — Studio A Dance opens

1984 — Madilyn Clark Studios opens

1989 — Highways Performance Space opens

1992 — The Edge (closed July 2021) + Millennium Dance Complex open

2000 — Debbie Allen Dance Academy opens

2008 — The Broad Stage opens

2013 — The Wallis opens

...even more resources! 
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