Dancers' Group

Rating: 4.81 stars   21 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture

Location: 1360 Mission Street Suite 200 San Francisco CA 94103 USA

Mission: Founded in 1982, Dancers’ Group promotes the visibility and viability of dance. We serve San Francisco Bay Area artists, the dance community and audiences through programs and services that are as collaborative and innovative as the creative process itself. In response to the needs of its constituents, Dancers’ Group has evolved to fulfill a dual function as a service organization and as a presenter of performance opportunities that maximize the visibility of dance in the Bay Area. Our Audience • Over 650 members who rely on our benefits to keep them connected and informed; • 104 local choreographers, companies, and community dance projects supported by our fiscal sponsorship program, which provides them with much needed administrative and financial oversight, as well as mentorship and other services; • More than 2,000 readers of In Dance, who get in-depth information about specific artists and critical analysis of the field as a whole, as well as the calendar of upcoming events; • Over 40 choreographers/directors who take advantage of our performance opportunities each year to develop their craft and audience base; • More than 300,000 audience members in the ten-county Bay Area who attend performances by our member artists; • Over 2,500 artists and dance supporters who are networked and kept informed about current community happenings through our community Ebulletin; and, • The general public, who has access to dancersgroup.org and californiadancenetwork.org, and is able to take advantage of our online performance calendars, article archives, news and artist information.
Geographic areas served: San Francisco Bay Area
Programs: ARTIST DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOPS: Throughout the year, Dancers' Group presents development workshops in areas such as fundraising, publicity, video documentation and more. BAY AREA NATIONAL DANCE WEEK: Now in its tenth year, this democratic program is comprised of a 10-day celebration of free public dance events in the Bay Area. Visit bayareandw.org for more information. CALIFORNIA DANCE NETWORK: Through an interactive mix of resources including personal profiles, event listings, feeds of media coverage on dance, featured articles, and a map that offers a visual tool for understanding dance in California, the California Dance Network helps artists build connections, stay informed and be counted. CA$H: A grant program of Theatre Bay Area in partnership with Dancers' Group, CA$H grants are designed to encourage risk-taking and innovation in the arts. Applications are available online at theatrebayarea.org. DANCERS' GROUP PRESENTS: We have multiple co-presenting programs that allow the staff to curate local and national artists in full evening or multi-artist performance events. Programs and events include ONSITE, 2nd Sundays and the Dance Discourse Project. FISCAL SPONSORSHIP PROGRAM: A program working to address the complex economic needs for a wide range of projects. Currently, this program supports over 90 artists and small companies. IN DANCE: The Bay Area's only monthly publication dedicated to dance features, interviews with local and visiting artists, in depth articles, a calendar of Bay Area dance events and more. INTERNSHIP AND WORK EXCHANGE PROGRAMS: Students in college or pre-professional dancers' are offered the opportunity for on-the-job experience in the field of performing arts. LIGHTING ARTISTS IN DANCE: A grant program supporting Bay Area lighting designers working in new or creative partnerships with a choreographer, dance company or presenter. MEMBERSHIP: Members receive In Dance delivered 1st class, weekly discounts to performances & workshops, local and national audition and job listings, access to the Bay Area Dance Directory, grants calendar and more. NEW STAGES FOR DANCE GRANTt: Supports Bay Area dance artists through theater rental subsidies in an effort to significantly impact and expand their performance season. Part of a national initiative funded by MetLife. PARACHUTE FUND: Provides emergency financial assistance to dance artists facing AIDS and other life-threatening illnesses. Applications are ongoing. WEBSITE: Visit dancersgroup.org to learn more about all of the programs and services Dancers' Group provides, including local calendar listings, mailing lists and our dance article archive.

2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Dancers' Group is the kind of arts support organization I would wish for every artist - its run and staffed by artists in the field who have first-hand experience of the kinds of processes they are supporting - not just faceless administrators sitting in an office somewhere. Plus, these folks are dedicated to making my life as a dance artist easier and more productive, partly by taking the task of dance administration as a creative endeavor in itself - sparking really interesting new programs and ways of thinking about how we do the business of making dance art - which is an inspiration in itself.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my success in getting grants and growing my dance company, Mary Armentrout Dance Theater.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give it more money!

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Rating: 4 stars  

Dancers' Group has been a valuable resource as I move through the startup phase with my organization, see. think. dance.

I am always impressed with the availability of Executive Director, Wayne Hazzard - via email or in person, Wayne has been extremely open to my questions and need to have a sounding board when it comes to the sticky things: fundraising plans, prioritizing, residency.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Communication is paramount with Dancers' Group and I never have to remind any member of the staff of a conversation had or an email sent. Makes me feel very cared for. I've thought about being a part of a larger, more populous network but the small, efficient staff at DG makes me feel like we're actually a community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would encourage Dancers' Group to add more social media to the navigation of their newsletter (especially to share events) and to develop a blog and/or an online version of InDance.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

Counterpulse and San Francisco Dance Center (InDance delivered to studios)

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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Rating: 5 stars  

Without the support and guidance of Dancers' Group, I never would have got my company off the ground. In addition to all the superb administrative help they offer, they are also just always available for personal and artistic guidance through the very difficult terrain of running one's own dance company. They are consistently compassionate and generous. One could not ask for a more supportive and inspiring organization.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Nearly all the details of running my company. Help with grants, advice on productions, feedback on work in progress. Pretty much everything necessary to keep a small arts organization going.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Makes sure they got increased endowments from all of their own funders.

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Rating: 5 stars  

Dancers' Group is an A-Team of super heroes for dance. I have received guidance, feedback, encouragement and technical assistance from just about every program they offer. Knowing that I can pick up the phone or contact anyone on staff for help or advice means that I know I can grow my company without isolation. This organization keeps dancers, and our needs in clear focus, often filling gaps like no other group. I read In Dance, their weekly enews blasts and updates religiously - they are inclusive, detailed and keep my finger on the pulse of our large and diverse dance community. In fact, I credit Dancers' Group with setting the cutting edge and inclusive tone of our community as a whole - they are so much of what makes this a great dance center in the country. I have seen other artist driven service organizations lose altitude, and yet I don't see this happening at DG. The dedication of the staff, past and present, have made such an impact on me, and many of my colleagues. My hat is off to Wayne, Kegan, Jorge, Shae, Maureen and Vangie for giving us this gift that keeps on giving!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

fundraising assistance, grant recipient, having my work presented, outreach for my performances and workshops, writing and being written about in publications,

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

bring back the Dance Quake program!

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Rating: 4 stars  

I am a co-director of Raks Africa, a Bay Area bellydance duo. In 2010 we started Girls Raks, a summer program for girls 13-19, which focuses on body image and bellydance. The venture would have been impossible without the assistance of Dancers' Group. They provided the fundraising infrastructure, access to affordable insurance and moral support that we needed to make the program a great success. They also organized a tax workshop for artist that was extremely informative.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the areas of fundraising and organizational development.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

open an office in Oakland, California

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I am a professional dancer, director/choreographer and teaching artist in Chicago. I am in my second year of membership with Dancers' Group. I enthusiastically support this group for the wonderful work they do in the Bay area, but also for the awareness they bring dance and dancers across the country. I wish Chicago had a strong organization like this to support their artists. I receive the monthly publication, Indance, and always find useful information for myself and my work. I get consistent emails from Dancers' Group, relaying information regarding works that are occurring in the Bay area and grant updates. Often, there are national grants or items that I can put to use. I think the fact that this organization can assist an artist in the Midwest speaks volumes. Dancers' Group is reaching out not only to the artists in their area, but also touching others across the country.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

furthering my education and staying connected to my field outside of my own community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try to expand the organization to other cities across the country.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I lived and worked in the Bay Area in the '80's as a choreographer and artistic director of a dance company. At this time, Dancers’ Group was just getting started and it was poised to replace the Bay Area Dance Coalition/Dance Bay Area organization, which was starting to lose steam as the leading advocacy/service organization for dance. Thirty years later, having just returned for an extended visit here, I am amazed at what Dancers’ Group has accomplished. It has far exceeded its predecessor in the range and depth of support it provides. Through the visionary leadership of its Executive Director, Wayne Hazzard, who knows the field of dance from years of personal experience as a performer, this organization truly meets the needs of the Bay Area dance community. It is apparent to me that Mr. Hazzard’s understanding of collaboration in service of a larger goal, gleaned from many years in the studio, has informed his methods of leadership. Understanding at a deep level how to process, include, listen and guide, as one does through the creative process, has been instrumental in creating a strong community, both within the organization and within the Bay Area dance scene. These strategies, which are probably more intuitive than strategic, have engendered commitment to the organization and a strong vision for its future of service to dance. Bravo! How exciting to see that this organization has weathered the economic roller coasters of the dotcom crash and the recent recession, to continue in its support of Bay Area dance in all of its richness and diversity.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Reading its newsletter and reviewing its services.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Augment its income so it could be of more service to artists.

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am updated on events, opportunities, jobs, grants, performances through both online and their newspaper.
The staff is excellent, friendly and always available to have a conversation about what i am interested in.
They create community service of many kinds.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

san franacisco, california

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

give them more $.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Since moving to San Francisco 15 years ago as an independent dance artist, Dancers' Group has provided me with a tremendous amount of support and guidance in the role of fiscal sponsor. This support has come not simply through its presence (which is considerably reassuring), but in concrete practices in navigating the dance community, including grant writing tips, fund raising advice, and performing opportunities (through presenting programs such as the Bread and Butter Series, 2nd Sundays, and, most recently, New Stages). Dancers' Group monthly periodical In Dance serves as San Francisco's only printed forum for discussion and inquiry. Dancers' Group is the cornerstone of and greatest advocate for Bay Area dance of all genres--no exaggeration.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Writing at least ten grants, publishing through their monthly periodical, being presented by them, receiving insurance riders by them.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Give them a whole bunch more money!

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Rating: 5 stars  

As a professional dancer/choreographer returning to my field, I feel very fortunate that such a competent, knowledgable advocacy organization as Dancer's Group exists and thrives. The director, Wayne Hazzard was tremendously supportive and helpful in guiding the choreographer's collective, which I am a member of, through the fiscal agent process. The monthly newsletter and weekly e-mail bulletins keep our group informed about grant deadlines, performance and rehearsal spaces available, etc. But most of all, Dancer's Group enables us to feel connected as a community, offering support and shared knowledge. This is an extremely valuable organization which enhances the art of dance in the Bay Area.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my group, SoCo Dance Theatre becoming a fiscal agent of Dancer's Group and as a choreographer returning to the field seeking to connect with the greater community.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

need to know more about what additional programs Dancer's Group could offer given more staff (i.e. funding) to suggest any changes.

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