Call for Submissions

Call for Essays & Photos on the theme “Dancing Ecologically”

Submission Date: September 15, 2016

“Nowadays, we’re used to wondering what a [dance] says about race or gender, even if the [dance] makes no explicit mention of race or gender. We will soon be accustomed to wondering what any [dance] says about the environment even if no animals or trees or mountains appear in it.” - Timothy Morton

Utah is located at the heart of public lands debate. With our many state and national parks and monuments, our issue with air quality, our water scarcities, our huge (growing) urban sprawl (and its accompanying social & environmental impacts), and our love for outdoor recreation. Alongside all of these, I see the passion of many local dancemakers to present work outside of the proscenium and build dances on ideas of ‘natural’ body movement. In this time of climate change, ecocide, and environmental racism, in this place, what does it mean to dance about the environment? What does it mean to construct a ‘natural’ body, if anything? From my basement office in Glendale, the environment and dance is a crucial issue to address at this moment. Following the lead of the environmental justice movement, I want to expand the definition of ‘environment’ for this issue to include not just Wild Utah, but also all the places that people live, work, play, dance, and learn here.

Questions addressed could include:

  • When are we dancing about (or with) the environment?
  • Why is site-specific work such a local passion? What does that passion tell us about the environment broadly, and/or the artist’s relationship with it? What is/is there an ethical responsibility when dancing on site?
  • What, if any, is the relationship between site-specific work and environmental issues?
  • What do our dances teach us about our environment? About ecology?
  • What does ecology teach us about our dances?
  • How does popular ideology about nature (e.g. ‘the environment’) create assumptions about ‘natural bodies’? How does the relationship of these ideas impact training and creative work?

Send submissions c/o Editor Liz Ivkovich;

All lengths, styles, and even works-in-progress desired!



Call for Submissions -- learning to loveDANCEmore

learning to loveDANCEmore, a performance journal

Call for Essays & Photos on the theme “Invisible/Visible”
Submission Date: March 15, 2016

“... in spite of a burgeoning wave of newly minted talent fresh from art schools and universities with direct access to the means of self-representation, the familiar, pyramidal structure of the high culture industry has not only been unfazed, it appears to have become more entrenched than ever before.”

- Gregory Scholette in Dark Matter - Art and Politics in the Age of the Enterprise Culture

When contemplating a theme for volume 12 of the loveDANCEmore performance journal, I considered that there are thousands of dance artists yet the same handful of individuals and companies tour, listing and re-listing one another on their bios. The upcoming journal explores whether this is a reflection of artistic merit (probably) or whether it sparks deeper questions regarding the presentation of concert dance in the contemporary moment (definitely).

The Western concert stage is governed by a growing list of hierarchies; race, gender, sexuality, aesthetic, and geography, to name a few. Funding, employment, institutional support and presentation - the markers of recognition - flow within the boundaries of these hierarchies rendering the labor of many dance artists invisible. There is a growing urgency to critically inquire about this hidden labor of contemporary dance, illustrated by the article “Is Modern Dance a Pyramid Scheme?” and more recently, the controversy surrounding Akram Khan’s comments on female choreographers. These situations spark the following questions :

  1. Who/what bodies is/are represented on the concert dance stage?
  2. Whose labor (of performance, creation, administration, education) is marked invisible; how and why does this happen?
  3. In what ways has the label ‘contemporary’ been defined? Who is included and excluded in that definition?
  4. Most crucially, how do artists disrupt these hierarchies and make their work visible?

In order to explore these issues, most particularly as they impact Salt Lake City, the Mountain West, and other midsize cities in the United States, loveDANCEmore is releasing an open call for submissions.

Submissions could address any of the questions above, or broadly the following topics:

  • hierarchies in contemporary dance
  • definitions of ‘contemporary’
  • ways in which creative labor is made visible

Submissions could be scholarly, storytelling, photos, poetry, or other kinds of content. Please send submissions to Liz Ivkovich, at by March 15, 2016.

Thumbnail courtesy of Susan Honer & Gina T'ai, previous journal contributors based in Ohio & Wisconsin. 

WTF Akram Khan

Akram Khan just said this.

I let my blood boil for approximately 45 minutes and then sat down, more calmly, to write this:

Akram Khan is wrong.

Akram Khan is deeply wrong and for more than a handful of reasons.

  1. Akram groups together Martha Graham and Pina Bausch as though they are in the same generation of women choreographers. The same generation which he presupposes, excluded male voices. With an over 50 year gap between their births, it’s not only unfair to lump the two women together but also proves that Akram’s understanding of women choreographers and their role in developing this art form is paltry at best.

  2. Let’s get back to Akram’s presupposition and remember that Isadora Duncan created a space for the purposes of locating freedom. More particularly for the freedom of moving, female bodies that were restricted, codified, and rejected by ballet. Martha (and her actual contemporaries) similarly worked with initially female ensembles because women in dance abounded; women seeking training and performance opportunities; women who were told no; women who knew the inherent potentials of their bodies in resistance. These women didn’t deny male choreographers, they created a space for themselves as a result of being rejected by a different space.

  3. Akram continues to assume that men are just now shifting into greater prominence because of roles they were allegedly denied early on. Consider this a friendly reminder that decreased male participation in concert dance is primarily due to patriarchal values impressed upon boys and their parents. You know what the least productive way to challenge those values is? Continuing to justify male prominence in all areas as  just and deserved. A better avenue would be the consideration of reasons why women, in a field of their own creation, are given significantly greater scrutiny than their male counterparts and simultaneously fewer opportunities.

  4. I could give a laundry list of men who were also seminal in the formation of modern dance but that would be as limiting as Akram’s grouping of Martha & Pina. Instead I will simply add that if a list were to be created and tallied, yes there would be a statistically greater number of women involved in choreographing, performing and teaching concert dance. Such a list is precisely the reason why the dwindling numbers of highly supported women in the field is a gigantic and troubling scenario.

  5. Major critics often employ comparison as a way to describe for their readership the material they are documenting. It’s not enough that women are denied opportunities to create but also that when they do, it’s put against an all-too-frequently male barometer. I’m willing to wager there isn’t one review that pits Akram’s work against a female contemporary but more than ten which do the inverse to British women in the field.

  6. Akram Khan is afraid. Being atop the power structure of concert dance is still pretty powerless in a broad picture of our world. His fear ultimately manifests in the idea that audiences don’t really need to see better representation of art-making, that it’s simply un-important. His position is one that further insulates and denigrates a form once created by brave and wild women.


On Site at Woodbury Gallery

Monday November 30th....
On Site mobile dance series presents new works at Woodbury Gallery in Orem.
Shows at 6 & 7:30pm, Free Admission.

Dances will be presented by Kate Monson, Aubry Dalley, Erica Womack, Sarah Donohue, Amy Markgraf-Jacobsen & Liz Dibble.

Co-directed by choreographers Kate Monson and Kori Wakamatsu the On Site series moves dance into public spaces across Utah County. Recently funded by an Orem City CARE grant, this is the first concert in Woodbury gallery space, previous concerts have explored the Central Utah Gardens, the BYU Museum of Art, Gurus Cafe & more.