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Letter from the Editor, Christine Jowers: A Call For Enthusiasm

Letter from the Editor, Christine Jowers: A Call For Enthusiasm
Christine Jowers/Follow @cmmjowers on Instagram

By Christine Jowers/Follow @cmmjowers on Instagram
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Published on August 13, 2013

Dance Up Close Initiative Begins. A New Master Writers in Residence Initiative.Celebrating an Excellent Birthday

                                                          Dear Dance Enthusiasts,

head shot of Dance Enthusiast Editor Christine Jowers
Christine Jowers  Photo by Jordan Matter
I am writing in the heat of the summer as we as prepare to celebrate our organization’s September birthday and another year of excellence. We at The Dance Enthusiast have nothing but good news to share. We are celebrating six years of serving the dance community by sharing its stories with the world, six years of creating original dance content and inviting our audiences into new conversations and new ways of appreciating this art form. 
In today’s climate of dwindling print journalism and arts reportage, the need for thoughtful dance writing and new media communication is more apparent than ever. Indeed, multiple ways to encounter dance beyond the stage are crucial to the survival of the art form. It is my desire to continually build The Dance Enthusiast into a vibrant, sustainable media entity and service organization that supports the dance community and creates, educates and inspires dances’ greatest supporters, its enthusiasts.

What The Dance Enthusiast Has Accomplished Since 2007.

Since our inception, we have tinkered with our structure and offerings to determine how  best to be of service. We have grown from one contributing writer (me) to a bevy of regular contributors with eclectic backgrounds in dance and arts journalism. I would like to acknowledge our talented and dedicated writers and thank them for their work: Brittany Beyer, Theodora Boguszewski, Erin Bomboy, Veronica Hackethal, Garnet Henderson, Raja Kelly, Trina Mannino, Roger Lee (Philadelphia), Sammi Lim, Stacey Menchel Kussel, Ann Moradian (Paris), Cory Nakasue, Pascal Rekoert Valdez, Henning Rübsam, Tara Sheena, Deirdre Towers –and new to our team this season, Elana Aquino, and Nia Austin Edwards.
Since our birth, our site has received over a quarter of a million page views and since 2008, when we started collecting Google Analytics, the company has grown 1000%, boasting 8,000 unique viewers a month -- not bad for a niche market.
Some of the team enjoying dinner together last summer: Garnet Henderson, Cory Nakasue, Trina Mannino, Tara Sheena, Pascal Rekoert Valdez, Brittany Beyer and Veronica Hackethal Photo by Christine Jowers

We have correspondents in Paris, Philadelphia and New York City and hope to expand in 2014 to include Washington D.C. and Chicago. We firmly believe in paying our writers for their hard work and although, at the moment, this fee is a flat rate and modest, we are continually working to find ways to grow compensation. The Dance Enthusiast supports and nurtures the efforts of the next generation of dance journalists.

The Dance Enthusiast’s Communication Initiatives

In addition to our writing coverage, we have created unique communication initiatives: our Audience Review Initiative -- a friendly and accessible online platform for audiences to discuss performance; our Enthusiast Events Initiative -- informal offline social events bringing dance artists and audiences together to discuss life and art; and most recently, our Dance Up Close Initiative -- the first ever granted program in our young history.

The Audience Review Initiative- A Great Way to Discover What Your  Audience Thinks and Start New Conversations :
Photo of Blakeley White McGuire , by Sara D. Davis, courtesy of The Martha Graham Contemporary Dance Company, Designed by Marissa Sher


 An Enthusiastic Event : Artists  meet the Audience for Mini Performance/Chat/ and Food at Triskelion Arts in Williamsburg, Photos by TDE Staff -Design by Sammi Lim

Dance Up Close’s grant from Engaging Dance Audiences, administered by Dance/USA and made possible with generous funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, will allow The Dance Enthusiast to systematically create a collection of short HD videos that carry our audience to the behind –the- scenes of dance, allowing them to engage with artists not only as abstract figures onstage, but real people at work. I smile when I think this program grew from my visits to various NYC dance companies with my Flip Camera.

As I write this letter, our reporters are practicing their skills with new video cameras and acquainting themselves with basic editing so that we will be able to create video content- rich video articles to benefit our community’s dance companies and individual artists.

Dance Enthusiast Reporters at Camera Workshop with Brent Felker  Photo by Cory Nakasue; Design by Sammi Lim

***The Dance Enthusiast
Supports Master Dance Journalists with New Initiative -The Master Writers in Residence Program ***

Eva Yaa Asantewaa, Photo by Deborah Feller

Although Dance Up Close will be a cornerstone of The Dance Enthusiast's expansion this season, every part of our company is growing. To celebrate our 6th birthday, we are delighted to introduce two Master Dance Writers in Residence for the 2013-14 Dance Season: Eva Yaa Asantewaa and Elizabeth Zimmer. Yaa Asantewaa who has been writing about dance since 1976, has been published
Elizabeth Zimmer
Photo by Robin Holland
on Dance Magazine, The Village Voice, SoHo Weekly News, Gay City News and is well respected for her writing on the arts on her blog InfiniteBody. Zimmer, the former dance editor of The Village Voice from 1992-2006, currently writes for Dance Studio Life, New York’s Metro and teaches writing at Hollins University, among other places. Yaa Asantewaaa and Zimmer will not only write for The Dance Enthusiast this season, but also share their wisdom through special workshops in dance journalism.We are looking forward to learning and growing with them.

It is vital for young dance journalists to experience the support and guidance of experienced writers.


A Call for Sponsorship and Your Support: The World Needs the Energy of Dance Enthusiasm

A majority of the work built thus far has been created solely on our own steam, not through funds or other assistance from outside resources. In this do-it-yourself manner, we are proud to have become an influential community organization, leading an exuberant revolution in dance communication.
Going forward we see striking potential to serve the dance community and general public. We believe more great work can be accomplished with a little help from our friends, which is why I am asking you today to consider a tax-deductible (birthday) gift to The Dance Enthusiast. (Click Link for Donor Levels, How to Donate)

You can send your donation birthday gift check to The Dance Enthusiast c/o Moving Arts Projects- 27 Bleecker St. 7B, NYC, NY 10012 or you can donate by clicking the link to our donor page. Link to The Dance Enthusiast, a moving arts project, donor  page.
Your donation will go directly towards supporting the next generation of dance journalists as well our unique initiatives that create and grow dance enthusiasm. The power of your gift will be seen clearly in the quality and quantity of our dance communication. And, we would love to see your name listed on The Dance Enthusiast’s support page.

Stefanie Batten Bland, Choreographer, Dancer, and Enthusiast on The Dance Enthusiast


Non- Financial Ways to Support The Dance Enthusias

If you do not have the financial capability to donate to our non-profit today, there are a number of ways you can support The Dance Enthusiast.
1. Read our content and comment on it online.
2. “Like” and share our work on Facebook and Twitter.
3. The next time you attend a performance, share an Audience Review.
4. Invite your friends to our Enthusiastic Events which happen regularly throughout the year.
If you are an artist or arts organization you can support The Dance Enthusiast by communicating with us.
1. Share your press releases.
2. Write a Postcard to let us know about your latest tour or trip.
3. Let us encourage your audiences to support you by writing Audience Reviews. Advertise with us. Partner with us on one of our Dance Enthusiast Initiatives.
4.Contact us at to discuss ways we can partner and spread enthusiasm and engagement in this wonderful art form.
Everyone at The Dance Enthusiast looks forward to celebrating our 6th birthday with you! Thank you for your support!
Yours truly,
Christine Jowers

Dance Enthusiast Birthday Donor Levels


An Enthusiast = Person Active in Interest 

*Enthusiast   5-9                                       
*Enthusiast Fan   0-9
*Enthusiast Compadre 00-99
*Enthusiast Lover          00- 99
*Enthusiast Devotee       00 - 99
*Enthusiast Angel           00 and above                                      
You can send your donation birthday gift check to The Dance Enthusiast c/o Moving Arts Projects- 27 Bleecker St. 7B, NYC, NY 10012 or you can donate by clicking the link to our donor page. Link to The Dance Enthusiast, a moving arts project,donor  page.

All Gift Givers :

Have their names mentioned on The Dance Enthusiast’s Supporter Page and receive a Dance Enthusiast Pen and Notebook    

Enthusiast Lovers: All of the above- plus a ticket to a dance performance with our Editor -in-Chief. 

Enthusiast Devotees: All of the above plus two tickets to a dance performance with our Editor-in-Chief.

Enthusiast Angels: All of the above plus attending a rehearsal with The Dance Enthusiast, and being recognized on our facebook page as an Enthusiast Angel



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