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DANCE NEWS: "Back To The Streets" with the 16th Annual Dance Parade!

DANCE NEWS: "Back To The Streets" with the 16th Annual Dance Parade!

Published on March 19, 2022
Photo by Juan P. Zapata

Save The Date: Saturday, May 21st (12:30PM Onwards)

Join in the festive fun and joy at the 16th Annual Dance Parade, Saturday, May 21, starting at 12:30 pm. This year's event is anticipated to attract 10,000 dancers, live bands and DJs, and see over 100 unique styles of dance and culture. 

“After a two year hiatus hosting a virtual event during the COVID pandemic, we are invigorated and raring to get “Back to the Streets” for this year’s parade and festival,” said Greg Miller, Dance Parade’s Executive Director. “Added to our regular programming will be a live Tango, Salsa and Afro-Cuban Conga bands, more floats and art cars, stepped-up education outreach, Dance Battles, a Soul Train Line and more DJs.”

Headlining the event as Grand Marshals are: Heidi Latsky, Artistic Director of Heidi Latsky Dance; Rich Medina, house, hip hop and Afrobeat DJ; and Eduardo Vilaro, Artistic Director & CEO, Ballet Hispánico.

On May 21, at 12:30 pm the annual event kicks off at 20th and Broadway and brings together dancers from around the city to showcase dance styles in a cross-cultural, rhythm-infused magical display of human movement, art and color. Dance styles reflect the cosmopolitan legacy of the city and the elastic inventiveness of the form, and include African, Asian-Indian, avant garde contemporary, ballet, Indian bhangra, Bolivian Carporalesn, 5Rhythms, breaking, Traditional Chinese, contemporary, hip-hop, Irish, Indonesian, Jamaican Dance Hall, lindy hop, modern, roller disco, salsa, Tahitian and tango.

Hula hoop dancers. Image via Dance Parade New York's Facebook

States Grand Marshal Eduardo Vilaro, "I'm proud to headline New York City's largest dance event. Movement and community is so vital to our well being which the pandemic stole from us. We look forward to being a part of Dance Parade's citywide celebration!"

Violeta Galagarza, Executive Artistic Director of KR3TS Dance Company, "Due to the pandemic, we're able to finally dance freely in the streets. This historical moment is important to us because the urban style of Hip Hop began in the streets and we are passionate about celebrating our 32nd year!"

Xianix Barrera, Artistic Director, “We are thrilled to be back to the streets with our parade float and our growing flamenco community — after COVID-19 we want to show New York City that we remain strong and as passionate about flamenco dance as ever. Ole!

Informational poster for Dance Parade 2022

Parade groups with choreography are invited to perform at our Grand Stand in Astor Plaza before the final stint along Saint Marks Place to Avenue A. DanceFest serves as a Grand Finale to the parade from 3 to 7 pm in Tompkins Square Park which includes curated performances on 3 stage s , "Experience Dance Booths," two teaching areas of various dance styles and a dance party, all free to the public.

Dancers of all ages will have participated in ten-week education programs sponsored made possible  by The National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts and The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. The workshops are run in schools, recreation centers and city parks in the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Though many aspects of the cabaret law has been repealed, the parade recognizes that the zoning laws still restrict dancing in most parts of the city and will express its roots with a presence by the New York Dance Police (NYDP) – a jovial group of uniformed officers inspiring the crowds to dance and celebrate the spirit of Dance Parade. In contrast to the real Dance Police of the Mayor Giuliani era, anyone caught not dancing could be cited with a summons to attend a free dance class or party in the city.

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