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CDHP strives always to create new ways to share our research with our communities. We are happy to announce a new series of monthly conversations that frame particular themes and interests. CDHP Playlists will focus the voices from our collections on topics that illuminate the history of dance in Chicago and how it relates to our present and future.

Five Chicago natives – Darlene Blackburn, Marcea Daiter, Doris Humphries, Peggy Sutton, and Geraldine Williams – discuss how race affected their dance educations and careers.

Playlist curated  by Patricia Alexander

Carol Bobrow, Pamela Crutchfield, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Gail Kalver, Dolores Lipinski Long, and Reggio McLaughlin recall surprising performances, celebrity encounters, and other memorable moments that made a lasting impact on their careers

Playlist curated  by Patricia Alexander

CDHP interviewees Sarah Mirkin, Lawrence Leritz, Eduardo Vilaro, Patti Eylar, Lauren Grant, Charlie Vernon, and Abby McCormick O'Neil reflect on the qualities that bring life and individuality to the Chicago arts community.

Playlist curated by Nora Henriksen and Patricia Alexander

CDHP interviewees Patricia Barretto, Muriel Foster, Lauren Grant, Maggie Kast, Dame Libby Komaiko, Peggy Sutton, and Carlton Wilborn discuss some of the artists and places mentioned in the 2021 Virtual Interview Marathon.

Playlist curated by Patricia Alexander

CDHP interviewees Joel Hall, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Doris Humphries, Ralph Lemon, Bebe Miller, Peggy Sutton, Carlton Wilborn, and Geraldine Williams discuss different aspects of being a Black artist in America.

Playlist curated by Patricia Alexander

CDHP celebrates Women's History Month with women artistic directors Darlene Blackburn, Stephanie Clemens, Christine DuBoulay Ellis, Jan Erkert, Muriel Foster, Dame Libby Komaiko, Shirley Mordine, Hema Rajagopalan, and Venetia Stifler. This playlist also honors the newly-appointed directors in the city: Nicole Clarke-Springer from Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre, Linda-Denise Fisher-Harrell of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and Regina Perry-Carr of Muntu Dance Theatre.

Playlist curated by Gail Kalver and Sarita Smith Childs

CDHP interviewees Pam Crutchfield, Jan Erkert, Joel Hall, Maggie Kast, Elizabeth Liebman, Harriet Ross, and Eduardo Vilaro reflect on the intersections of dance and activism, how social issues inspire new works, and the platform that dance provides for action and commentary.

Playlist curated by Patricia Alexander

These clips from both the CDHP original and collected materials celebrate Asian and Pacific American heritage. Patricia Barretto, Ayako Kato, Ruth Ann Koesun, Rika Lin (Fujima Yoshinojo), Sono Osato, Hema Rajagopalan, Shubukai, Fujima Shunojo 藤間 秀之丞, BTC Kokyo Taiko, and Sara Zalek highlight how members of the Chicago dance community both preserve and reimagine traditional forms of dance, break barriers, confront racism, and honor the past. 
Playlist curated by Jenai Cutcher

As we return to live performances and in celebration of Chicago Dance Month, we are delving into stories surrounding performance that are undeniably live. These clips share the thrilling energy unique to live performance: the ephemerality of the experience, the spontaneity and surprises that can happen onstage and off, and the special relationship between performers and audiences. Muriel Foster, Tom Gold, Rick Hilsabeck, Dolores Long, Reggio McLaughlin, Bruce Sagan, and Vanessa Valecillos examine pre-show rituals, non-traditional performance spaces, stage presence, and special moments on stage.
Playlist curated by Zoe Lesser

Research, performance, celebration – efforts to create community can take many forms. The August Playlist is a cornucopia, showcasing the Chicago dance community through two annual events: Chicago Dancers United’s Dance for Life, this year a free performance at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion on August 26, and the SeeChicagoDance awards celebration at the end of September. Since we do not yet have interviews or edited footage for all companies or honorees, we encourage you to visit organizational websites for additional information and materials. 

Click here for a bonus gallery of DFL photos.

Playlist curated by Randy Duncan and Gail Kalver

CDHP is very happy to have found a new home at the Ruth Page Center for the Arts as an organization-in-residence. To celebrate this new partnership, the September playlist reflects the legacy of Page herself, the center that bears her name, and the arts organizations working within it. Patricia Klekovic and Dolores Long share stories from their days dancing with Page's company, Lawrence Leritz recalls her generous spirit, Tom Gold contextualizes her work in the national dance conversation, and Carlton Wilborn connects the dots between Ruth Page and Madonna with one famous lift. 

Victor Alexander, Director of the Ruth Page School of Dance, discusses the opportunity students have to train in Havana, Cuba. He and Artistic Associate Maray Gutierrez recount how they moved from Cuba to Chicago and came to dance with Hedwig Dances. Hear from founding board member Pam Crutchfield about how DanceWorks Chicago was created and enjoy a segment from CDHP's Interview Marathon with Cesar Salinas, Artistic Programs Manager and former dancer with Giordano Dance Chicago. Archival clips of The Nutcracker, Carmina Burana, and Page in rehearsal are featured. 

Playlist curated by Zoe Lesser and Jenai Cutcher

October is American Archives Month, so this month's playlist features our b-roll: photos, documents and videos that support the ideas expressed in our custom-edited clips from oral history interviews. Sometimes these items are drawn from our larger collections, like the photography of Jennifer Girard or Chuck Osgood or video from the Illinois Arts Council. We occasionally borrow them from our fellow repositories who are diligently preserving these materials, such as Chicago Film Archives, Mark Morris Dance Group, and Choose Chicago. Most often, however, the materials for our clips come straight from the source – our interviewees. Not only do they share incredible memories and insights, but also important artifacts that we are proud to put back in the public eye. All of these clips spotlight such gems from the personal archives of those narrating: Victor Alexander, Stephanie Clemens, Marcea Daiter, Jan Erkert, Muriel Foster, Lauren Grant, Charles Grass, Mary Kay Lackritz Gray and Susan Lackritz Kaplan, Marilyn Ruekberg, Charlie Vernon, and Patti Vickerman Happy treasure hunting!

Playlist curated by Jenai Cutcher

Dance is an art form with many collaborators and allies. Working collectively is central to the dance making process and this month's playlist celebrates the collaborative spirit so often at the forefront of dance in Chicago. CDHP interviewees highlight everything that goes into a performance, from music, costumes, and lighting to production management and all the behind-the-scenes work it takes to sustain Chicago's unique dance community. Featuring Darlene Blackburn, Pamela Crutchfield, Carol Doty, Jan Erkert, Patti Eylar, Muriel Foster, Sid Smith, and Joshua Weckesser, with a special segment from CDHP's Interview Marathon featuring members of The Seldoms' creative team: Carrie Hanson, Julie Ballard, Bob Faust, and Faheem Majeed.
Playlist curated by Laki Rajan

On January 31st, 2021, CDHP hosted our first digital Interview Marathon, streamed live from the Auditorium Theatre and featuring 46 dancers, choreographers, artistic directors, and other patrons of the Chicago dance community. We first released this playlist in anticipation of the event and publish it again now in preparation for a future announcement. (Stay tuned throughout the month!) It features past interviewees who relate to the people and topics included in the Marathon.
Learn from Patricia Barretto, Muriel Foster, Lauren Grant, Maggie Kast, Dame Libby Komaiko, Peggy Sutton, and Carlton Wilborn about The Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Sammy Dyer School of the Theatre, Mark Morris Dance Group, Ensemble Español, Mayfair Academy, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and more.

Playlist curated by Patricia Alexander

CDHP is on a "2" kick this month. Among other things, it's my birthday on 2/22/22 and it seems only fitting to celebrate with a playlist about dynamic duos. Chicago dance boasts so many strong partnerships, this is the first of 2 lists of duets. This one leans heavily toward tap dance to honor my own background; the duo act was a common vaudeville tradition. Learn about The Riff Brothers, The Manhattan Debs, Jimmy Byrnes & Patti, Cook & Brown, and Reggio & Brownie. Lou Conte and Claire Bataille exemplify the partnership between choreographer and performer and the Lackritz Sisters are included for good measure – studying dance with a buddy or a sibling makes the experience even better.
Stay 2-ned for more duos 2 be featured in a future list!
Playlist curated by Jenai Cutcher

There is never a bad time to learn from and reflect upon those who came before us and the playlist in this Memorial Day month does exactly that. The history of Chicago dance is ever-expanding and it is deeply important to CDHP to make sure that the stories of those who built this community are not lost to time. This May 2022 playlist highlights the stories of many foundational members of the Chicago dance scene as told by those who have been inspired to continue the art and their legacy.

Playlist curated by Austin Niño

Would you like to curate a playlist from CDHP's growing collection of videos?
Please contact us with your ideas!

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