Dance On Camera Around the World

January 26
Berkeley Carroll School, Brooklyn, NY
February 9, 10 Macalester College, St. Paul, MN
March 10-11
University of Michigan Ann Arbor, MI
February 23
March 23
June 9
Readymade Dance Theatre, Albuquerque, NM
March 11, 17, 31 National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
March 18-19 Univ. of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (American College Dance Festival)
March 15, 16, 21 Radford University, Radford, VA (American College Dance Festival)
March 30 Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, Spain
March 31 Missoula Dance on Camera, Missoula, MT, (ACDF)
April 13 Wisconsin Film Festival, Madison
April 16-17 Washington Center for the Arts, Olympia, WA
April 19
Southeastern Louisiana University Hammond, LA
April 20
Florida State University Tallahassee
April 24 Cinema Muranow, Warsaw, Poland
April 25 Muscota New School , New York City
as part of National Dance Week
April 25 Pratt Institute Manhattan, 7pm, Free – NYS ADTA
April 26 – May 1
Dance Camera Istanbul, Turkey
April 26 City Dance Ensemble, Washington, DC
May 12-13 Circle Cinema, Tulsa, OK
May 13 Galapagos Art Space, Brooklyn, NY (Dance Film Lab)
May 11-17 Jacob Burns Center, Pleasantville, NY
May 22 Dance/Screen, Yerba Buena Center, San Francisco, CA
May 22 Dance Film Lab, for Young Choreographers Initiative
June 7-12 Moves 07, Manchester, UK
June 7-8, 14-15
Philadelphia Dance Projects, Philadelphia, PA

June 27, July 5

Briansky Saratoga Ballet Center, Saratoga Springs, NY
June 19-23 SouthSide Film Institute, Bethlehem, PA
June 30 Danceworks, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
June 30, July 7
Contemporary Dance, Modern Art Museum, Fort Worth, TX
July 19-29
New Horizons Festival/Kinotanca, Poland
July 21 Danceworks, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
July 23
Center for the Arts, Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT
August 4 Danceworks, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
August 29 Miami Int’l Ballet Festival, Miami, Florida
September 13 Juilliard School, Dance Division, New York City
September 7
Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond
September 14-16
Rochester Dance on Camera Festival , NY
Sept. 8,15,22, 29 Pre-screening for Dance on Camera Festival ’08 at Dance/NYC
September 27 Muhlenberg College, Allentown, PA
October 4,11
Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio
Sept. 26-Oct. 11 Beijing Dance Academy, South China Normal University, China
October 24-25 Cultural Center Hedwig Dances, Chicago, Il
November (tbd) DeSales University, Center Vallery, PA
November 1-4 10th ROMP! Suddenly Dance Theatre, Victoria, BC, Canada
November 16 Educators Special, an introductory workshop co-sponsored by
New York Federation of Teachers at Dance/NYC
November 2-3 San Diego Tijuana Dance Film Festival
November 16-18 NJ State Film Festival of Cape May, New Jersey
December 12 Educators Special, an introductory workshop co-sponsored by
New York Federation of Teachers at 52 Broadway, New York
December 28-30 Flint Center for the Arts, Flint, MI
Dance on Camera Ezine

House on Hold

Dancer Josh Hilberman was working at a tap festival in Greece on September 5, 2007, when he got word from a friend that a water pipe connector had let go in his house just outside Boston, causing a major flood. He and his wife rushed back to the States, to find all their furniture on the lawn and the inside of the house soaked to the studs and floorboards. Their life was in limbo.

Everything got moved into Hilberman’s studio in a separate building next to the house, and the couple moved to a temporary apartment in Chinatown. With the house stripped bare and the reconstruction ready to start, Hilberman negotiated with the insurance company and fretted. The trouble was, he was booked for a one-man tap show at Arlington’s Regent Theater on the first of March. He couldn’t use his studio because it was full of furniture, and he couldn’t concentrate anyway, because of the hulking job to be done next door.

Hilberman is a sturdy, upbeat guy, a problem-solver with a loopy imagination. Since he couldn’t work on his dance he decided to make a film, using his derelict house as the set. He took a slightly damp video camera and his tap shoes into the house and started filming himself.

What resulted, the four and a half-minute FloodHouseDance, is neither a tap dance film nor a film with a tap story. Instead, with the ruined house and all its meanings resonating around him, Hilberman’s dancing becomes a voice—a witness, a commentator, and in the end a kind of exorcist to a calamitous event.

First off, the fixed camera stares at a blank wall with a light socket in it, and a patch of floor. You hear some attention-getting raps coming from nowhere. Then you realize that at the side of the frame there’s an empty bookcase, and on top of the bookcase is a pair of feet, shouting into the empty room.

Then, in a series of short takes, we tour the skeletal house. You hear syncopations echoing two rooms away. From behind a partition a leg reaches out, tentatively tests the floor. Big red, yellow and blue tap shoes take over the screen, dancing insistently, shaking the baseboards. Behind some studs and electrical cables, a shadowy figure whistles and scours the gritty floor with a sand dance, stomps down a hall and up some stairs. A ghostly form is glimpsed running through spaces, leaping through doorways. He’s stamping in circles two rooms away, the sunlight washing in behind him. He seems to be getting angry. His blurry figure throws pieces of lumber onto the floor.

Then the tapping gets quieter and we’re looking at the culprit, a toilet on the second floor, covered with a crumpled sheet of plastic. There’s a commotion behind the blueboard construction panels, and then one panel comes loose and slams to the floor. The dancer, who’s pushed it over, stops his tapping and walks slowly toward the camera. Finally we see Hilberman’s face, coming closer and closer, peering into the lens, until the screen goes black.

We’re left to ponder about empty houses, spaces filled with light and the sounds of frustration, disasters we live through.

FLOODHOUSEDANCE was shot in two days and edited in Hilberman’s new Apple computer in time to make its debut at the Regent. Hilberman is back in his house now and the mess is almost gone, except for some mold under the kitchen cabinets that may never get excised.