The Hatchery Project
A Multi-Site Creative Residency Project
The Chocolate Factory Theater in New York City, the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography at Florida State University in Tallahassee, Philadelphia’s RED Arts Project, and Vermont Performance Lab in Guilford created The Hatchery Project in response to a desperate need for support in the dance field. An experiment in collaboration, The Hatchery Project partnered with choreographers throughout the many stages of the creative process, balancing audience engagement in diverse communities with an abiding belief in the primacy of artists’ voices.
With major support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, The Hatchery Project launched a pilot project in June 2012 to work with four choreographers: luciana achugar, Beth Gill, Annie-B Parson of Big Dance Theater, and Reggie Wilson. The writer Claudia La Rocco was brought on to document and evaluate this endeavor, observing as artists spent creative time in the rural, retreat-like environment of Vermont Performance Lab, the university setting of MANCC and the rich urban cultures of RED Arts Project and the Chocolate Factory.
While many partnerships exist to help choreographers with the presentation of finished work, no such model exists to sustain dance‐makers from the beginning of the creative process through to a work’s premiere, and into the uncertain days that follow the completion of a major project. The United States has nurtured and continues to foster the work of some of the most profound dance artists of our time. For our best and most promising artists, this type of support should be the norm, not the exception. Cooperation and information sharing between support organizations is vital. And a deeper engagement between artists and audiences is critical to acquiring and sustaining investment in dance and performance now and into the future. To move the field and our society toward championing these deeper layers of support, this project creates an opportunity to understand the value of this investment in dance artists’ creative process, elevate the case for it and seed its growth.
View hatcheryproject.org to learn more about the art of supporting dance-making, and how this project helped raise the profile of research and development residencies.
The Hatchery Project was made possible with support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and The Chocolate Factory, the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography at Florida State University, Philadelphia Live Arts Project, RED Arts Project, and Vermont Performance Lab.