Sticky at Agnes Varis Performing Arts Center

0_37a9367This summer, we went back to the VR Center with Melanie Stewart and began reconstructing Sticky.

Sticky (2016) is an evolution of Sticky (2012) a work of visual theatre that integrates dance, language, film animation, and 3-D virtual imaging to explore the nature of bonding and sometimes “sticky” situations that arise in long-term romantic relationships. Underlying currents of attraction, repulsion, frustration, and compulsion drive escapism in a world where a couple’s negotiation for power and struggle for identity are contextualized in the current political climate.

A collaboration between performers Eun Jung Choi and Guillermo Ortega Tanus of Da·Da·Dance Project and choreographer and director Melanie Stewart, STICKY first premiered in Mexico City at the Centro Cultural del Bosque complex in the Teatro de la Danza.

The piece makes its New York City premiere at Gibney Dance.

More information:

Workshop with Helena Franzén

We are thrilled to announce that the company is hosting Helena Franzén to teach a workshop in Philadelphia from May 2nd through 3rd at the University of the Arts (1401 Walnut Street).  This two-day/10hrs. intensive workshop will be in two parts: 1) Dance Technique “The Breaking Body” 2) Creative Process “The Duo Experience.”  Please read the descriptions below and Helena’s Bio.

Helena Franzén

Workshop with Helena Franzén

Sat, May 2 2015 1:00 PM Sun, May 3 2015 6:00 PM

@ The University of the Arts – 1401 Walnut Street, Philadelphia (above Banana Republic)

The workshop has two parts: 1) The Breathing Body (technique); 2) The Duo Experience (creating process)

1) The Breathing Body – 1-3PM

Helena Franzén’s technique class is released based and the focus is to open the body finding the ease and the efficient way of moving. Floor exercises and inspiration of yoga are methods to find the centre, the flexibility and the strength of the body. We are working on the importance of the breath, creating a sensitive mind together with the body.

The warm-up is a preparation to a longer phrase material where different dynamics and awareness of the space and musicality is exposed and clarified. Physical challenges of covering space are encouraged.

2) The Duo Experience 3-6 PM

In the workshop we are dealing with the physical interpretation of a repertoire material and what happens in the transmission when the dancer is trying to understand the qualities and the nature of the movement language. We ask questions about how you can get closer to the understanding of the physicality. What is it to really understand a movement within a dancer?

We start from a specific solo material and challenge ourselves, trying different ways and methods how to approach unfamiliar movements, how take charge and finally how to give in to the movement. During the workshop the solo material is going to be translated and explored into duos.

How can we communicate with another interpreter that knows the same dance material? In the interpretation of the solo material we discover new layers of consciousness, getting sensible to the constant change of the body knowledge.

Above all, the workshop encourages taking risks in body and in mind- a tribute to pure delight of the dancing body!



”Few Swedish choreographers are so generous, stimulatingly inventive and physically intelligent as Helena Franzén.” Dagens Nyheter 2010

Over the years Helena Franzén has choreographed more than 70 pieces. Helena has been commissioned to create works for The Göteborg Ballet, Skånes Dansteater, Norrdans, DDT Company, Copenhagen the Royal Opera in Copenhagen and The Edge at the Place in London. She also teaches technique classes and repertoir in Sweden and abroad.

In her work, Helena Franzén focuses on the dancing, musical body. Anatomical structures, dynamic progression and physical functions are recurrent themes in her artistic pursuits. During the years, she has developed a personal movement vocabulary, charged with intricate, physical challenges and explosiveness – a special poetry of the articulated body.

All of her dancers contribute with their individual integrity of motion and a strong and intense presence. In her most recent productions, she has developed a close collaboration with musicians performing live. The music and the dance challenge each other, creating a nerve and density running through the dynamics of the moving body as well as time structures.

In 2007 Helena Franzén obtained a 10-year grant from the Swedish Arts Grants Committee. In 2014 she was awarded The Gunnevik prize with the motivation:  A choreographer whos artistic work appeared as mature and detailed already from the beginning. She is uncompromisingly and consistently investigating in the eternal possibilities of the movements in her dance. She is a dance artist that together with her dancers create the poetry of the articulated body.

More information:



2014 Rocky Award


The Company received a 2014 Rocky Award from our beloved dance artist, Beau Hancock.

The Rocky Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in a production, a performance, a set design, or other accomplishment in Greater Philadelphia’s dance community. There are no categories, committees or ballots. Each recipient wins the honor of selecting a “champion” to receive a Rocky Award in the subsequent year. The Rocky Awards are presented in collaboration with FringeArts with support from Dance/USA Philadelphia.  More information about Rocky Awards:


At the ceremony, Beau Hancock presented a tribute photos referencing our past and current works.  Here is the link to view the video:


A Story of Three Cities

Rowan University Performing Arts 2014 presents “A Story of Three Cities”, an evening of dance and video by Da·Da·Dance Project. The performance will be at Pfleeger Concert Hall, Rowan University on March 5, 2014.

Photo by Johanna Austin | AustinArt
Photo by Johanna Austin | AustinArt

“A Story of Three Cities”, features works by Erick Montes, Luke Gutgsell and two artistic directors of the company: Eun Jung Choi and Guillermo Ortega Tanus. Set to original sound score by Joo Won Park, the company will premiere a new trio, The Strangest Thing: Clearance 13’6” by Erick Montes. The work explores psychological layers and the mystery of stage events, creating an anti-climactic love thriller. John Luna adds visual layers to The Strangest Thing: Clearance 13’6” with video projection, and Patricia Dominguez designs the costumes.  Screening of Da·Da·Dance Project’s video projects featuring Lince Siblings (a notable comic duo) from Mexico City is The visual images throughout this evening performance embrace humor, buoyancy, perplexity, aggression and a sense of absence, all through compelling contemporary dance.

Where: Pfleeger Concert Hall, Rowan University, Glassboro, New Jersey 08028

When: Wednesday, March 05, 2014 at 8:00 PM

Tickets: $15.00 for General Admission, $10.00 for Senior/Student. To purchase tickets online visit or call 856.256.4545

Tickets for Rowan students and staff with valid ID are FREE, but cannot be reserved.  The box office is open Monday – Friday, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm and one hour before the performance.

For additional information about the performance and theater location/directions, visit Rowan University Website: or E-Mail:

Guest Choreographer/Performer Bio

Erick Montes (Guest Choreographer/Performer) is a dancer/member of The Bill T.Jones/ Arnie Zane Dance Company since 2003. He trained at The National School of Classical and Contemporary Dance in Mexico City where his professional career started with Company Barro Rojo Arte Escénico in 1997. He holds a fellowship in Choreography from The New York Foundation for the Arts, and as faculty, he has been invited to The National Ballet Academy of Beijing, The International Project for Dance and Performing Arts in Rome, Italy and The Autonomous National University in San Jose, Costa Rica. Erick has collaborated with artists such as Stephen Petronio, Bill Young, Colleen Thomas, Jenifer Nugent, Ryan Kelly, Malcolm Low, Eun Jung Choi and Guillermo Ortega Tanus among others, presenting his own work in La MaMa Experimental Theater as part of International Series, E-Moves at The Gate House at Harlem Stage, Skirball Center for the Performing Arts for The Mexico Now Festival and The BlaTino Series at The Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance.

Luke Gutgsell (Guest Choreographer) is a Portland based dancer/choreographer. He was born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky where he began his early movement training in gymnastics. In 2004, he graduated from The Ohio State University with a BFA in Dance Performance. Luke also attended the Naropa Institute. He trained on scholarship at the Merce Cunningham studio and apprenticed and performed with Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and Shen Wei Dance Arts. He has also had the great fortune to perform in the companies of David Dorfmans, Chris Elam, Risa Jaroslow, JoAnna Mendl Shaw, Tiffany Mills, Jody Oberfelder, Laura Peterson, Risa Jaroslow, Christopher Williams and Michou Zsabo. His choreography has been presented in New York City at Danspace Project, Dixon Place, The West End Theater and the LaMama Theater.

Point of Departure: “Study#2: Holy Cabinet” – October 19-21, 2012

Direction: Eun Jung Choi
Movement Collaboration/Performance: John Luna, Bronwen MacArthur, Scott McPheeters, and Guillermo Ortega Tanus
Music Score: Alban Bailly
Costume Design: Eun Jung Choi, consultation from Jennielynn Streed
Costume Construction: Eun Jung Choi, consultation and assistance from Patricia Dominguez
Lighting Design: Kathy Kaufmann
Fairies: Shailer Kern-Carruth, Megan Mizanty, and Megan Quinn

Study #2: Holy Cabinet is supported in part with funds from the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival as part of a Live Arts Brewery Fellowship.


In the space of Holy Cabinet, everything is possible and nothing is impossible. Our collective imaginations will act as vehicles to another world of the unforeseen.  Holy Cabinet’s playfulness breaks down its original structure, displaying a wide variety of visual images with its humor, buoyancy, and perplexity.  Set to an original music by Alban Bailly, Study #2: Holy Cabinet will be performed by “Philly’s most intriguing dancers” (by Lisa Kraus, Dance Magazine Jan. 12): Bronwen MacArthur, Guillermo Ortega Tanus, John Luna, and Scott McPheeters.

For more information on POD site:

Point of Departure: “Sticky” in Philadelphia – October 5-7, 2012


Choreographer/Director: Melanie Stewart
Performers:  Eun Jung Choi and Guillermo Ortega Tanus (Da·Da·Dance Project)
Score: Alban Bailly
Costume Design: Patricia Dominguez
Set Design: Matheus Fiuza
Animation: Liz Goldberg
Computer Engineers: George Lecakes assisted by Denzel Maradza
Video Recording: David Cimetta
Lighting Design: Kathy Kaufmann

Created with support from The Philadelphia Cultural Fund, The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Rowan University Tech Park, Melanie Stewart Dance Theatre and Temple University.

“STICKY” explores the nature of bonding as one human is to another, in image and in memory, examining sticky situations in relationships through a multi layered use of movement, 3-d media, film animation, music and text.

For more info on POD site:

Estreno de la obra Sticky – México D.F.

STICKY (estreno)

Teatro de la Danza
Centro Cultural del Bosque
Reforma y Campo Marte s/n
Metro Auditorio

Agosto 2012
Jueves 16/20:00 horas
Viernes 17/20:00 horas
Sábado 18/19:00 horas
Domingo 19/18:00 horas

Duración: 60 minutos aproximadamente.
No intermedio
Localidades: $80.00

Boletos disponibles en la taquilla del teatro y en
Descuentos del 50% a maestros, estudiantes e INAPAM

Coreografía: Melanie Stewart (EU)
Intérpretes/Creación de Movimiento: Da·Da·Dance Project/Eun Jung Choi (Corea) y Guillermo Ortega Tanus (México)
Escenografía: Matheus Fialho Fiuza (Brazil)
Música original: Alban Bailly (Francia)
Animación: Raymond Ercoli / Liz Goldberg (EU)
Directora de Escena: Adjani Solórzano (México)

“Sticky” es un dueto dirigido por Melanie Stewart en colaboración con la compañía Da·Da·Dance Project y la Universidad de Rowan (Tech Park), Nueva Jersey, E.U.A. La
obra transita entre la realidad y el formato digital a la vez que examina la naturaleza de las uniones como en el caso de un ser humano a otro. Sticky transpasa los límites de las relaciones en imagenes y en la memoria. Lo enmielado y adherente crea múltiples capas y significados a medida que el entorno cambia. Sticky explora las interacciones y temas de pareja a través del movimiento y otros medios de comunicación incluyendo texto, música, video, cine de animación y tecnología 3-D (CAVE).

La creación de “Sticky” no sería posible sin el apoyo de Melanie Stewart Dance Theater, Universidad de Temple, Universidad de Rowan Tech Park, la Coordinación Nacional de Danza del INBA, el Fondo para la Cultura y las Artes (FONCA-CONACULTA), el fondo Cultural de Filadelfia, y el Consejo de las Artes de Pensilvania.

Este proyecto recibió un apoyo parcial de Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, un programa desarrollado y financiado por The Hainz Endowments; the William Penn Foundation; the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, una agencia estatal; The Pew Charitable Trust; y administrado por Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation.  


21st Century Dadaism

Written by Izzy Woods

Image by Pablo Macalupú (Creative Commons-licensed content)

Dadaism was a movement (or, should that be, anti-movement?) which came out of the horror and dereliction left by the First World War. It was intended to satirise and to shock, at a time in which the ordinary world felt anything but ordinary. It was, essentially, a movement of anger and protest. So, could today’s artists, musicians and dancers feel the same way about Dadaism, as those early pioneers did? Back then, they made art out of urinals – would the modern equivalent be memory foam mattresses? Can art inspired by Dadaism be important or relevant today, or is it something that was of its time?
The origins of Dada

Dada’s proponents were horrified by what had happened to the continent in which they lived, and they were angry at the establishment that had allowed it to happen. As a result, they sought to create ‘anti-art’ that shocked and ridiculed the status quo. People were repulsed by the Dadaists’ art at first. Then, the artistic mainstream began to accept it. So, the movement ended, no longer having a purpose.

While Dadaism was essentially a movement aimed at creating revulsion, and borne out of horror and disgust, the art that it created was not horrible or disgusting. Dadaism created absurd, colourful, fun art that broke all the rules simply by having no rules.
Later movements

Dada may have been short lived, but it went on to form the basis of many other movements of ‘anti-art’. The concept of a movement that existed to reject and poke fun at the world struck a chord with many people. Movements that include surrealism, pop-art, punk, post-modernism and abstract art. All these movements are very different from each other, but what they have in common is their ability to shake people up and to force people into new ways of thinking, or to turn them away. These movements were not Dadaism, but they took and used some of its values. To them, Dadaism was undoubtedly relevant.
Contemporary Dada

So, can Dada have relevance for us today? Does a movement like the Dada Dance Movement have something to say about us and our society? And does it matter whether it does or not?

We live in an uncertain and changing world, in which old beliefs are constantly being challenged and changed, whether for good or ill. We may not be experiencing the kind of cataclysmic change that the original Dadaists experienced, but there is no doubt that for all of us, life over the next decade and beyond is likely to be challenging, economically and therefore, socially.

It is rare that anything challenging comes out of contentment. Dada and its related movements demonstrate human beings’ capacity to find a way through even the darkest seeming tunnels. And they do not do it by conforming to the same conventions and norms that caused the problem in the first instance, but by ridiculing them, and creating something that is both nihilistic and positive, something absurd.

Dadaism resonated because it captured a particular mood. The mood that it captured was one that related to a specific set of circumstances, but it was also one that could be applied to many other sets of circumstances. That is why Dadaism is still relevant today, and why modern Dada movements have their place. Dadaism was essentially an anti-war movement, but it could be an anti-anything movement. It celebrates a very basic human desire – to question, rather than to simply accept, our circumstances. It does so in a way that those who are being questioned would not recognise or even understand, and that is what gives it its power.

So, what can the Dada Dance Movement in particular give us? Dance, and the music that accompanies it, has the potential to be the most powerful of all the art forms. It is a social form of art, which rather than being created by someone sitting alone and separate from their audience, is about interaction. The audience sees the art being created in front of them, and that creates a particular kind of energy. In a society in which we constantly see people’s forms on screen, Dada dance can help us see a different perspective.

WAVE RISING SERIES – October 29th, 29th, 30th

Friday October 28th, @ 7:30PM
Saturday October 29th, @ 4PM
Sunday October 30th, @ 7:30PM


25 Jay Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201-1139  MAP

The company will be presenting two works: “Prey and Predator” and “Q&A”.

Both “Prey and Predator” and “Q&A” question and intend to subvert role-playing and power dynamics between (or/and within) the performers and the audience.  The works create theatrical/physical environments in which various games will be played.  The themes we explore frequently include aspects of one’s personality, social and emotional behavior and intelligence, with a curious mixture of the comic and tragic.