Futura: Past Forward

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$6,137 raised of $5,000 goal
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Funded on August 10, 2017
    • 123% contributed

I am working on a new collaborative multidisciplinary performance work, Futura: Past Forward, that applies principles of the Bauhaus modernist art movement to dance while also challenging notions of what constitutes choreography. This will be the next major work presented by my company, Hedwig Dances. What excites me most about this project is the level of research, experimentation, and collaboration it involves, which will push myself, this ensemble, and we hope, the field of dance in new directions. This project draws upon a recent research trip to Germany where I studied the Bauhaus School and movement, including its history, principles, and ongoing influence. I am attracted to the School’s tenet that design is a source of social transformation. In this latest work, I will explore such topics as the role of social design in dance, and how dance shapes, and is shaped by society, art, architecture, and design in the 21st century. I will focus on space, particularly the idea of confinement and freedom, as well as parallels between the Weimar era and our own time. This exploration of Bauhaus principles is consistent with my career-long focus on dance practice and performance as a ritual powerful enough to break down barriers and bring people together. I believe that dance is as much a research science as an extension of the humanities, and I continue to be intrigued by the question of why people dance and how we interpret and understand what is being communicated non-verbally through movement. Through this campaign, I hope to raise funds to cover the significant costs of bringing Futura: Past Forward to the stage in Fall 2018.

About This Project

My central pursuit as a dance artist is how the body expresses truths about the human experience beyond words. These concerns led me to research dance from a cultural and world dance perspective as an extension of my academic majors in sociology and anthropology.

I recently returned from a research trip to Germany funded by a professional development grant from The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation. I visited the three original sites of the Bauhaus School in Weimar, Dessau, and Berlin. During my travels, I met with various individuals—historians, researchers, educators, and presenters related to the living Bauhaus movement—to deepen my understanding of its history, influences, principles, and pedagogy.

For Futura: Past Forward, I will apply Bauhaus principles and aesthetics—abstraction, playful thinking, experimentation—to the development of choreography and production elements, the use of 21st century media, and the ways in which performers interact with the audience. Hedwig Dances has arranged a development partnership with the Institute of Design at the Illinois Institute of Technology, a school founded as the “New Bauhaus” in 1937, to create a dialogue with their students and faculty members in this process.

Through playful experimentation with my dancers and collaborators, we will build a novel and richly theatrical movement playground that is threaded with a rousing musical score and a vibrant, colorful visual design. I am very excited to launch this ambitious project. Please help me bring Futura: Past Forward to life!


Video credits: 

Dance of Forgotten Steps: choreography Jan Bartoszek; structures Barbara Cooper; video Petra Bachmaier; lighting Ken Bowen; music Michael Caskey; dancers Jessie Gutierrez, Maray Gutierrez, Katie Grave, Victor Alexander, Edson Cabrera, Michel Rodriguez  (in order of appearance).

ASCENDance: choreography Jan Bartoszek; folded paper structures Barbara Cooper; video Petra Bachmaier, music Matthew Ferraro; lighting Ken Bowen; costumes Vin Reed; dancers Victor Alexander, Maray Gutierrez, Katie Graves, Michel Rodriguez, Edson Cabrera, Jessie Gutierrez (in order of appearance).

Thank yous

Contribute any amount or choose from the levels below.

  • $25
    Personal thank you on social media ($25.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $50
    Above plus a handwritten "Futura: Past Forward" thank you note via snail mail and your name featured in Hedwig Dances’ performance program ($50.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $100
    All of the above plus exclusive digital photos of our "Futura: Past Forward" rehearsal process ($100.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $250
    All of the above, plus an exclusive Hedwig Dances "Futura: Past Forward" T-shirt ($225.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $500
    All of the above plus two tickets to the Chicago performance of "Futura: Past Forward," including a cocktail with Hedwig Dances’ artistic team ($400.00 is tax deductible.)
  • $1000
    All of the above plus an invitation to a rehearsal of "Futura: Past Forward" including a meet and greet with the dancers ($900.00 is tax deductible.)

Jan Bartoszek

Jan Bartoszek is the founder and artistic director of Hedwig Dances, a 33 year-old, Chicago-based contemporary dance theater ensemble in residence at The Ruth Page Center for the Arts. Throughout her career, she has fostered a spirit of collaboration with …

View Jan Bartoszek's profile
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    • Thank you to the following for contributing to 3Arts with the recommendation that we support this project.

    • Anonymous Supporter

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    • Sonia Cooke

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 Additional support provided by: 

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