LA COUNTY DANCE-MAKERS: ACTIVITY, WORKFORCE, AND ECONOMICS
Research as a key component of DRC's mission to support a thriving dance ecosystem in Southern California.
The following study, conducted using Cultural Data Project profiles of dance-makers in Los Angeles, has allowed the Dance Resource Center to dive deeper than ever before into our understanding of the sector. This snapshot of the field reflects LA dance’s many successes and challenges, and provides a new platform for sharing, discussing and creating the story of dance in Los Angeles.
While this report captures only a small fraction of the dance activity in Los Angeles, we believe it establishes a set of key benchmarks and indicators that will be useful in measuring the health of our sector over time. The 41 dance-makers studied constitute an 8.7-million dollar industry, employing a dedicated workforce defined by its resourcefulness and entrepreneurship.
We hope this study will be the first of many to help us reflect on where we are now, so that we may together carve the path to future successes.
THE EVOLVING STATE OF DANCE IN LOS ANGELES
A Study of Non-Concert Opportunities
The Center for Cultural Innovation (CCI) commissioned Bonnie Oda Homsey in October 2013 to conduct the first place-based scan and analysis of Los Angeles dance companies and venues. The task was motivated by the recognition that dance in Los Angeles is underserved in terms of performance opportunities and related funding to support creative growth and operations. This study assesses the needs and opportunities for collaboration between the dance companies and venues, focusing on the readily available and affordable “non-concert” activities (e.g., classes,workshops and other low-production events) in “win-win” partnerships, both financially and in terms of the organization’s respective artistic and audience goals. The methodology for the study included a survey and analysis of 20 Los Angeles dance companies and 35 venues in 11 of the 15 Los Angeles City Council Districts. Los Angeles has a storied dance history with luminaries such as Alvin Ailey, Fred Astaire, Busby Berkeley, Agnes de Mille, Martha Graham, Lester Horton, Gene Kelly, Ruth St. Denis and many others. These choreographers and dancers pioneered American dance on the stage and in film, and conceived models of collaboration which cultivated enthusiastic new audiences for dance.