At a press conference on Monday, January 11, it was announced that The Bessie Awards (honoring dance and performance in NYC) would return in the fall of 2010.
Since 1983, the Bessies, New York’s Dance and Performance Awards have saluted outstanding artists and works. Following last year’s hiatus, the producers of the Bessies undertook a series of listening and planning sessions with leading members of the dance community. The purpose of the discussions was to discover new ways that the awards could engage, support, and celebrate the great variety of dance and performance work going on in the city. It is with great excitement that the Bessies embark on this important work of reinventing and reenergizing the awards for the next decade.
The Bessies will launch a new web presence through DanceNYC, which will also take over the administration of the awards.
The current producers of the awards—Danspace Project, the Joyce Theater, and Dance Theater Workshop—will work in partnership with DanceNYC as it assumes the day-to-day responsibilities of producing The Bessies. DanceNYC, working with the acclaimed team at Design Brooklyn, will also create and maintain The Bessies homepage on the web. The site aims to become a hub for the New York dance world, a place to share information on companies, shows, and projects, as well as the place to go to for detailed info on the Bessie Committee and ongoing developments related to the awards.
The Bessies is actively working to find new ways that the awards can benefit the community and the honored artists.
A few of the ideas in development are an annual Bessie-related event during the APAP Conference to promote the work of the past year’s honorees, streaming honored artists work on the Bessie web site, pursuing commissioning grants to accompany certain awards, and more.
The Bessie Committee for the 2010 awards is Nolini Barretto, Rashida Bumbray, Lili Chopra, Joan Finkelstein, Boo Froebel, Stephen Greco, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Stanford Makishi, Brian McCormick, Nicky Paraiso, Brian Rogers, Philip Sandstrom, Yoko Shioya, Sydney Skybetter, Ivan Sygoda, Charmaine Warren, Susan Yung
A Bessie Steering Committee is being created that will work with Michelle Burkhart of DanceNYC, Martin Wechsler of The Joyce, Judy Hussie-Taylor of Danspace Project, and Andrea Sholler and Carla Peterson of Dance Theater Workshop to provide leadership for the Bessies going forward.
DanceNYC will work with Lucy Sexton as an independent fundraiser for and producer of The Bessies.
Look for the announcement of further details on the Bessie web site and via our press correspondence. All questions should go to Lucy Sexton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 15: Bessie web site launched by DanceNYC.
May 1: Date, location, and updated information on the awards for the fall 2010 ceremony announced.