Since 1984 Dancing in the Streets has presented site-specific performances, pioneering the union of choreographers, public sites and communities and making the performing arts a vital and enriching element of public life.
From Merce Cunningham in Grand Central Terminal, to Martha Bowers with schoolchildren and senior citizens in 19th-century warehouses on the piers of Brooklyn's Red Hook to dance charrettes on Governors Island and at Floyd Bennett Field, Dancing in the Streets' productions engage communities directly in unexpected places. From David Rousseve in L.A.'s Bradbury Building to Elizabeth Streb in Chicago's State of Illinois Center and Meredith Monk at the Roosevelt Island ruins, Dancing in the Streets' productions challenge the boundaries of where performance belongs and whom it can involve.
Past initiatives include the Environmental Touring Network, the first national structure to support performing artists addressing environmental issues, and OnSITE: An International Commissioning Fund for Site-Specific Performance, the first fund designed to foster the creation of site-specific, community interactive performances.
Families will enjoy Dancing in the Streets' Dances for Wave Hill performance series, which takes place every July for three weeks in the renowned public gardens above the Hudson River in the Bronx (see Wave Hill entry for directions). Each May, Dancing in the Streets presents the Young People's Performance Festival at the Beard Street Piers in Brooklyn, in which public school children collaborate with local arts organizations and established artists. Other performances, presented on a sporadic basis, are also suitable for the entire family.
Dancing in the Schools brings performing artists into public schools to teach a series of intensive yet enjoyable classes that incorporate elements of theater, music and visual arts. This three-part program consists of an introductory presentation for the entire school community by the performing artist, ten or more hands-on workshops for up to four groups of students and an open performance created by the students.