It isn’t about the performances on the stage. I could even argue that it isn’t about the amount of money being donated to the New Jersey Recovery Fund. Next Wednesday, 12/12/12, the dance community is coming together for a benefit concert for Sandy relief at Raritan Valley Community College at 7:30pm. The individual artists that comprise the NJ dance community don’t have $1000, or even $500, to donate to Sandy relief, but they do have talent, and ambition. So, they have pooled their energy and created an event larger than what they could manage alone, and are making a difference the best way they know how: by dancing!
Barely one month back, the Board members of Dance New Jersey, the statewide service organization for dance, had an inkling to organize something for hurricane relief. A few phone calls later, we were offered the Nash Theatre at RVCC and a tech crew for free, and quickly built a program of performances from their own companies, chose the beneficiary of the donations, and set-off to market DanceNJ Strong: a benefit concert for Sandy relief. Standard practice would dictate a lead-time before any performance of at least six months, but here we were planning an event with fourteen individual performances in just four weeks.
Performers include: Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, New Jersey Ballet, Roxey Ballet, Verlezza/Fois, Claire Porter/PORTABLES, Lustig Dance Theatre, Freespace Dance, Nai Ni Chen Dance Company, Nimbus Dance Works, 10 Hairy Legs, moe-tion dance theatre, Ballet Forte, Dance Innovations and students from RVCC.
The entire dance community is being encouraged to come out, sporting logo apparel to represent their organizations, to show their support – how amazing it will be to see the strength and sheer volume of dance artists in our state in one spot. And we certainly hope that the general public will take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy a selection of great artists and give a little bit more to a cause that has affected us all.
DanceNJ Strong is not going to raise $1million, we are hoping to hand a check to the NJ Recovery Fund for at least $3,000, but it raises the spirits of a group of artists who wanted to do something to help.
More information about DanceNJ Strong and a link to purchase tickets online can be found at www.dancenj.org. (While you are there, check-out the up-to-date calendar of dance performances and workshops around the state.) Tickets are $10 plus a perishable food donation for the Food Bank Network of Somerset County. All earnings will go to the NJ Recovery Fund, helping support nonprofits and communities as they rebuild after Hurricane Sandy.
Claire Porter/ PORTABLES photo by Steve Schrieber
Roxey Ballet’s Hynug Ji Yu
Verlezza/Fois photo by Chet Rybak