Southern Vermont Dance Festival celebrates its fifth season

BRATTLEBORO — Southern Vermont Dance Festival will be celebrating its fifth season from July 13 through July 16. With an exciting round of classes, performances, and community events SVDF will have an incredible selection to offer. There will be galas galore, and for dance professionals or dance students there will be a wealth of works to see and classes to take. With four days of ticketed and free performance and over 113 classes and a strong focus on community, this year's festival will be sure to deliver!

The festival boasts faculty and choreographers at the top of their field with a unique ability to serve all levels of dance from the dance enthusiast to the dance professional and everything in between. For the fifth year in a row the festival will host some major players in the dance world. The theme this season is diversity with a social justice community event, a performance about Harriet Tubman at the Latchis, and a strong focus on dance from around the world and different cultures. The performances are highlighting the beauty in our difference and the strength in celebrating diversity.

New to this seasons festival is a Mid Summers Night Picnic and Promenade performance at Scott Farm that is selling quickly so getting your tickets early is recommended. In addition a `Yoga Track' has been added for those whom yoga is their preferred movement form. Also new this season is a community dinner, a social justice/resistance performing arts tour downtown and a mini dance film festival. This is in addition to the usual three galas, informal concert, closing concert, dozens of community events, visual art exhibits, and 113 classes that are offered this season.

This year's festival welcomes back five year veteran and former chair of the Hong Kong Performing Arts Academy and of the UMass Dance Department, Billbob Brown. Billbob returns with a diverse selection of classes and a work that explores "the wall." In addition returning this season are the Wondertwins, some of their credits include Bobby Brown's "Don't Be Cruel" World Tour, New Kids in the Block "Magic Summer Tour," choreographers, Apollonia Kotero "I Fell for You" World Tour, Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, Brooklyn Dance Festival, The Yard. In addition to dancing on the stage with legends like, Run D.M.C., LL Cool J, Public Enemy, Mc Lyte and Queen Latifah to name a few. This season they will be teaching and performing.

Some other featured faculty, choreographers and companies include: Ted Thomas, former company member at Paul Taylor Dance, in addition to Ballet Hispanico, Elisa Monte, and the Murray Louis and Nikolais Company. Mucuy Bolles, former dancer with Alvin Ailey, Feld Ballet, Zvi Dance, Complexions, Elisa Monte Dance, Buglisi/Foreman Dance, Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, and. Broadway credits include: The Red Shoes, The King and I and The Lion King. Lisa Chow and Desert Dance Theatre, with a completed a trilogy of civil rights productions, "Free At Last," "Sister Moses: The Story of Harriet Tubman," and "Judgments," and collaboration with live musicians. Alison Cook Beatty, whose work has been commissioned by Columbia Ballet Collaborative, Carolina Ballet Theater, Joffrey Ballet School NYC, Opera Dolce, NYU, The Boston Conservatory at Berkeley, Fort Hamilton High School, and Ballet Next. She has also performed with Paul Taylor Dance Company, Taylor 2 among others. For a complete list of featured faculty, choreographers and companies check out the line up online.

SVDF began five years ago as an economic driver for the community, following the fire in the Brooks House and the floods of Tropical Storm Irene. What better way to make our community thrive then to bring in the joy of movement! SVDF currently seeks sponsors, volunteer and host families for artists and faculty. To purchase tickets, support or donate, visit or email


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