“As the information that we were in a safe touch, safe adventure environment dawned on us, the warmth grew. First came safety, then came warmth. Then came...well, what one goes dancing for. Meeting people, doing and seeing unusual things, finding physical challenge while laughing. Being moved.”

∼Steve Paxton

Founder of Contact Improv

Joint Forces Links & Resources

Contact Improvisation Links

Breitenbush Contact Improv Jam, Breitenbush Hot Springs Retreat and Conference Center, Detroit, Oregon: Register for the annual March Contact Improvisation Jam directly through Joint Forces Dance Company. But visit their website to get a feel for this beautiful retreat center.
web: www.breitenbush.com

Contact Quarterly, his biannual journal of dance, improvisation, performance, and contemporary movement arts is the longest living, independent, artist-made, not-for-profit, reader-supported magazine devoted to the dancer’s voice. They have often written about and published photos of Joint Forces Dance Company, the Breitenbush Jam, DanceAbility, and mixed-abilities dance.
web: www.contactquarterly.com

Contact Improv Social Networking Online Forum, This was born out of CI36, a celebration of 36 years of contact improvisation held during 2009 at Juniata College, Pennsylvania, USA along with at many satellite events around the world. It is a user-friendly site with over 300 members. It is easy to add other members to your "friends" list, post photos and videos, and discuss topics.
web: ci36community.ning.com

ContactImprov.com, Lists workshops, jams, teachers, links, articles, and contact people world-wide, as well as having a photo/video gallery. The content can be read in ten different languages.Lists workshops, jams, teachers, links, articles, and contact people world-wide, as well as having a photo/video gallery. The content can be read in ten different languages.
web: www.contactimprov.com

ContactImprov.net, Lists workshops, jams, teachers, links, articles, and contact people world-wide.
web: www.contactimprov.net

Alito Alessi in Vienna in the Summers

ImPulsTanz (Vienna International Dance Festival), Vienna, Austria, Europe’s premier dance festival, this lasts five weeks every summer and gathers master teachers from around the world in many contemporary dance disciplines as well as ballet, yoga, African dance, hip-hop, etc. Alito Alessi has taught there every summer for the last dozen years. Mixed-abilities dance and contact improvisation are always among the offerings. Choose from hundreds of workshops, intensives, coaching series, and performances by the big and upcoming names in international dance. The site can be viewed in English or German
web: www.impulstanz.com

Mixed Abilities Dance Links

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: U.S.

Asher Dance Eclectic, Tampa, Florida: Asher Dance Eclectic incorporates able-bodied and wheelchair dancers in jazz and contemporary dance styles.
web: www.madtheatre.com/asher/default.asp

Axis Dance Company, San Francisco: AXIS creates contemporary dance through the collaboration of dancers with and without disabilities. The website has great videos of their performances.
web: www.axisdance.org

Bethune Theatredanse and Infinite Dreams, Los Angeles: Bethune blends dance, special effects, art, music, and video. Infinite Dreams is a dance education program for children with disabilities.
web: www.bethunetheatredanse.org

Dance Detour, Chicago: Founded in 1995, Dance Detour grounds its work in the diversity of its dancers, celebrating their physical, ethnic, generational, cultural, and artistic differences. The inclusive dance work includes elements of many forms of dance (modern, ballet, ballroom, jazz, African, street dance, line dancing) alongside acting, singing, writing, and other media. Founder/artistic director Alana Smith was originally inspired to expand from her acting career when she saw a performance by Cleveland Ballet Dancing Wheels.
web: www.dancedetour.org

Dancing Wheels, Cleveland: Founded in 1980 by Mary Verdi-Fletcher, Dancing Wheels developed a strong relationship with the Cleveland Ballet and in 1990, Cleveland Ballet Dancing Wheels was formed. In 1994, Sabatino Verlezza joined the inclusive dance company as co-artistic director and choreographer. Drawing largely upon May O’Donnell technique, his innovative choreography accentuates the abilities rather than limitations of the dancers.
web: www.gggreg.com/dancingwheels.htm

Full Radius Dance, Atlanta: Dedicated to the exploration of “new movement possibilities,” Full Radius creates, commissions, and performs new inclusive dance work.
web: www.fullradiusdance.org

Cara Graninger - Dance Artist, Detroit, Michigan: Cara is a certified DanceAbility teacher who teaches inclusive dance workshops.
email: caragraninger@gmail.com

Infinity Dance Theater, New York: Infinity is a non-traditional inclusive dance company featuring dancers with disabilities and dancers who are beyond the age traditionally associated with being a dancer.
web: www.infinitydance.com

Inflight Dance Company, San Antonio, Texas: Their primary focus is to demonstrate that a physical disability is not a barrier in the dance world.
web: www.inflightdance.com

Karen Peterson and Dancers, Miami: Karen Peterson and Dancers performs repertory by dancers with and without disabilities.
web: www.karenpetersondancers.org

Paradox Dance, Berkeley, California: Bruce Curtis is an activist, dance teacher and performer who uses a wheelchair. He has been teaching and performing Contact Improvisation since 1990 in integrated workshops all around the world. Paradox Dance explores the mind/body relationship, special movement, architecture, time and the perception of the audience.
web: www.geocities.com/paradoxdance/

Spitzer Dance Company, Atlanta: Founder Alex Spitzer may be the first wheelchair user to have gained a four-year degree in dance from a U.S. college.
web: www.spitzerdancecompany.org

Seize the Day, Maryland: They are an inclusive dance company which includes people with physical disabilities. Their arts education program includes children and adults with a wide range of physical and developmental disabilities. The company teaches and performs in the DC Metro region and is available for year round performances/workshops nationally and internationally.
email: pkseize@aol.com

Tokounou Dance Company, New York: Sidiki Conde is a dancer, drummer, and singer from Guinea, West Africa, a disabled dancer whose music and dances chronicle his personal journey and celebrate Guinea.
web: www.tokounou.home.mindspring.com

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: Canada

MoMo Dance Theatre, Calgary, Alberta: This diverse abilities company is led by Pamela Boyd, a certified DanceAbility teacher. They offer classes and performances.
web: www.momodancetheatre.org

Propeller Dance, Ottawa, Ontario: Propeller Dance’s mandate is to provide dance programming to people with and without disability. Co-founder Shara Weaver is a certified DanceAbility teacher.
web: www.propellerdance.com

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: Central and South America

Núcleo Dança Aberta, São Paulo, Brazil: This inclusive dance company is led by Neca Zarvos, a dancer, actor, and teacher of the DanceAbility method. They work with dancers with and without disabilities.
web: www.nucleodancaaberta.blogspot.com Portugese language site

Danza Sin Limites, Buenos Aires, Argentina: They promote the diffusion, teaching, and practice of inclusive dance. DanceAbility is one of the central methods they draw on.
web: www.danzasinlimites.org Spanish language site

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: Continental Europe

Associazione Cultural Onlus Ottavo Giorno, Padua (Padova), Italy: Director Marina Giacometti is a certified DanceAbility teacher.
web: www.ottavogiorno.net/italiano/laboratori/danceability Italian language site

BewegGrund, Trier, Germany: This company is directed by Maja Hehlen, a certified DanceAbility teacher. The dance company hosted and produced the 2003 DanceAbility Teacher Certification course in Trier.
web: www.beweggrund-online.de German language site with some English

Bilderwerfer, Vienna, Austria: In 1992 choreographer and performer Daniel Aschwanden started to work with Christian Polster, a dancer with Down’s Syndrome. The group now contains six members, three disabled and three able-bodied, and draws from New Dance Techniques, in particular Contact Improvisation. The work is also shaped through techniques which introduce elements of acting into the dance. The work is inspired by ‘the language of everyday bodies - in opposition to the dictate of the perfect body.’
web: www.bilderwerfer.com German language site

Cyprus DanceAbility: You can read about DanceAbility at this site.
web: www.arh.ru/~dancenter/projects/danceab.htm Greek language site

DanceAbility Austria, Vienna: This mixed-abilities group is led by Vera Rebl, a certified DanceAbility teacher.
web: www.danceability.at German language site

DIN A 13, Cologne, Germany: DIN A 13 was founded in 1995 as a collective of dancers and musicians. It originated from an earlier company named Mobiaki, which performed throughout Europe for some years. DIN A 13’s work is based on improvisational techniques and has a strong commitment to the exploration of difficult emotional places, in that the accepted norms of aestheticism in society and the associated taboos are put into question.
web: www.theaterszene-koeln.de/din-a-13/info.htm German language site

Marina Idaczyk - Dance Teacher, Trier, Germany: Marina uses the DanceAbility method in her teaching work with people with diverse abilities.
web: www.danceability.de German language site

L’Associazione il Cortile, Milan, Italy: Director Laura Banfi is a certified DanceAbility teacher.
web: www.ilcortile.net Italian language site

Tanssiryhmä Pauliinauru Co. - Dance Group Pauliinauru & Co., Finland: Mrs. Pauliina Lappi-Ruhanen is the Artistic Director and Ms. Gunilla Sjövall is the Producer of Finland’s first professional mixed-abilities dance company. They are both certified DanceAbility teachers. email: pauliinauru@gmail.comMarina uses the DanceAbility method in her teaching work with people with diverse abilities.
email: to email Gunilla and Pauliina in English or Finnish, click here ».

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: New Zealand

Touch Compass Dance Trust: Touch Compass is a pick-up dance company established in 1992 as Catherine Chappell & Dancers. The Company works on a project-to-project basis. In 1995, the focus for the Company moved into the area of mixed ability dance. The 1997 Touch Compass performance season was the first theatrical season of mixed ability dance in New Zealand. Their performances include theater and aerial work.
web: www.touchcompass.org.nz

Mixed Abilities Dance Groups: United Kingdom

Adam Benjamin - Dance Artist: “My journey in dance oscillates between the vibrant uncertainty of improvisation in workshops and performance, and the crafting possible within set pieces choreographed for the stage. It is about freedom and choices, order and chaos, about respect and possibilities. It is about the integration of ideas, about finding our way, finding our place, finding ourselves.”
web: www.adambenjamin.co.uk

Blue Eyed Soul: Blue Eyed Soul is the West Midlands leading inclusive community Dance Company and has enjoyed critical acclaim for performances throughout the UK. Blue Eyed Soul’s training program includes company apprenticeships, performance projects and fortnightly open workshops.
web: www.blueeyedsouldance.com

CandoCo Dance Company: CandoCo began in 1991 as an effort to use dance as a truly integrated medium for disabled and non-disabled students. It is now a prominent and accomplished member in the British contemporary dance scene. Using a combination of Graham-based technique and Contact Improvisation, artistic directors Celeste Dandeker and Adam Benjamin have established a seven-member dance company which has won a number of prestigious awards for their performances as well as their video and film work.
web: www.candoco.co.uk

Touchdown Dance: Touchdown Dance, based in Manchester, works locally, regionally, nationally and internationally within communities and professional dance. Our renowned workshop provision has taken us to Poland, Germany, Australia, and the USA to involve people with a visual impairment in dance or to provide training for professionals.
web: www.touchdowndance.co.uk

Other Resources

Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington: The mission of Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington is to enhance young people’s learning with creative resources from the arts community. Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington is the local chapter of Young Audiences, Inc., the nation’s leading source of arts in education services to schools. Follow the links to In-School Arts Programming and Artist Pages, and under J is Joint Forces performance-assembly description.
web: www.ya-or.org

The National Arts and Disability Center (NADC): NADC is the national information dissemination, technical assistance and referral center specializing in the field of arts and disability. The NADC is dedicated to promoting the full inclusion of children and adults with disabilities into the visual, performing, media, and literary arts communities. Its resource directories, annotated bibliographies, related links and conferences serve to advance artists with disabilities and accessibility to the arts.
web: www.nadc.ucla.edu

VSA Arts: VSA arts is an international nonprofit organization founded in 1974 by Ambassador Jean Kennedy Smith to create a society where people with disabilities can learn through, participate in, and enjoy the arts. Nearly 5 million people with disabilities participate in VSA arts programs every year through a network of affiliates in 49 states and 64 countries worldwide.
web: www.vsarts.org

Disability Art and Culture Project (DACP), Portland, Oregon: The mission of the Disability Arts and Culture Project (DACP) is to further the artistic expression of people with both hidden and visible disabilities. Founders and directors Erik Ferguson and Kathy Coleman are certified DanceAbility teachers. Inclusive dance is one of their program areas.
web: www.dacphome.org

DanceAbility International
Joint Forces Dance Co.
576 Olive St. Suite 208
Eugene, OR 97401