Throughout the year, Philadelphia Dance Projects presents stimulating and provocative programs, from performances by renowned independent dance artists and companies to film events, workshops, classes, educational programs, and forums for artists, aspiring artists, and students, all geared toward a broad-based audience.

Erin Crawley-Woods Movement for Mercy: Teaching Dance to Incarcerated Youth

Sunday, October 22, 2017 - 1:00pm
Erin Crawley-Woods Movement for Mercy: Teaching Dance to Incarcerated Youth

Erin Crawley-Woods who directed a groundbreaking and successful program in New Mexico, and who is now involved in a national expansion of dance programs for youth in detention centers, will share and demonstrate methods developed in the project.  Be prepared to move!

RSVP to infoatphiladanceprojects [dot] org.

Erin Crawley-Woods is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance at Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA. From 2007-2011 she was a repertory company member and Director of Community Outreach at Keshet Dance Company in Albuquerque, New Mexico. During that time she created curriculum guides for teachers integrating arts and performance into the classroom, coordinated dance programs within the public school system and private sector and managed the on-going development of Keshet’s nationally recognized M3 Program for Incarcerated Youth. In addition, she has taught creative movement for young children, pre-professional dance training for teens and physically integrated dance for all ages.

Erin has performed in the US and abroad with Adriane Fang, Sharon Mansur, the Nancy Meehan Dance Company, Leslie Satin & Dancers, Sara Rudner & Company, Anneke Hansen, and the Irish Modern Dance Theater. Additionally, she has participated in artistic residencies in Oulchy le Chateau, France and at the Omi International Arts Center in Ghent NY. Crawley-Woods holds a Diploma in Holistic Bodywork from the New Mexico Academy of Healing Arts, a B.A. in Theater, Dance, and French from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.F.A. in Dance from the University of Maryland-College Park.

Since 1996 Keshet Dance Company in Albuquerque has been developing a movement and mentorship program called M3 which uses dance as a vehicle to engage, educate, and empower incarcerated and paroling youth within the State of New Mexico. The success of the program launched Movement for Mercy, the national expansion of the program’s curriculum through residencies and partnerships with five communities throughout the U.S.  Erin Crawley-Woods, M3 Director from 2007-2011 and current co-facilitator of Movement for Mercy, joins us to share her experiences teaching in the juvenile justice system and offer some tools for creating a dance-based curriculum that can be adapted to a variety of settings. Be prepared to move!

The Performance Garage
1515 Brandywine Street
Philadelphia 19130
Phone: 2155462552


Wednesday, November 29, 2017 - 7:30pm
Thursday, November 30, 2017 - 7:30pm

WOLF-IN-SKINS   excerpts from the dance opera

NOVEMBER 29 & 30  at 7:30PM
SEI Innovation Studio, Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad Street
Tickets $10 at the Kimmel Box Office

Philadelphia Dance Projects in partnership with American Opera Projects will present an “Informance” with Choreographer, Christopher Williams and Composer, Gregory Spears as the culmination of a creative artist residency to further develop their original dance opera, WOLF-IN-SKINS.

An “Informance” is a work-in-progress showing, where the artists are in conversation with the audience about the content of the work, their ideas and inspiration.  Dancers, singers and musicians will perform sections from the work.

Wolves, hounds, fay milkmaids and other mythical characters fill this dance opera that draws inspiration from a cycle of Welsh romance tales that preserve pre-Celtic and pre-Christian elements. It views marginalized or outmoded cultural relics, celebrating the “otherness” inherent in early Welsh literature, through a contemporary lens.

Christopher Williams, hailed as “one of the most exciting choreographic voices out there” in The New York Times and “the downtown prodigy” in The New Yorker, is a choreographer, dancer and puppeteer who has been devoted to crafting and performing choreographic works in New York City and abroad since 1999 including recent collaborations choreographing operas directed by Peter Sellars and Michel Fau.

Gregory Spears writes instrumental and vocal music that blends together stylistic aspects of romanticism, minimalism and early music. The Chicago Tribune hailed the music of Spears’ “Fellow Travelers” (premiered in 2016) as one of the “most accomplished new American operas in recent years …his setting of words to music is masterly.”

This project is supported in part by The National Endowment for the Arts, the William Penn Foundation, the Philadelphia Cultural Fund, PA Arts Council Project Stream grant administered by the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance and Individual Donors.


Operatic elements tell the story while dance explores the dreaminess of the mythology…it’s a visual feast.”  - Merilyn Jackson, Philadelphia Inquirer

If you were one of the lucky audience to see the Philadelphia Dance Projects’ sold out performances of Wolf-In-Skins, Act 1 in 2013 you know how exciting this work is! 
PDP special residency will begin in 2017 and culminate with a script in hand presentation in the Fall when some of those marvelous singers, wolves and hounds, along with new puppets will return.
PDP has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for a creative residency with choreographer, Christopher Williams and composer Gregory Spears to work towards finishing this wonderful dance opera.  

“Dance and opera certainly have been blended over the centuries, but not often with the sort of intensive interaction demanded by [choreographer] Williams and composer Gregory Spears, both seemingly fearless about striking out in new direction.” David Patrick Stearns, Philadelphia Inquirer

SEI Innovation Studio, Kimmel Center
300 S. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102

Dawn Pratson, Music Made Visible: Dalcroze Plastique Anime

Sunday, December 3, 2017 - 1:00pm
Dawn Pratson, Music Made Visible: Dalcroze Plastique Anime

Plastique Animé is the art of interpreting a piece of music in movement in a way that makes the music visible. Coming from the music education approach named after Swiss composer and music educator, Emile Jaques-Dalcroze, called Dalcroze Eurhythmics, plastique animé is a tool for deepening students’ musicianship by embodying the music. Through active listening and score analysis, the choreographer/teacher selects which musical subjects to focus on and designs a series of lessons whereby students listen, analyze, and learn choreography created by the teacher as well as create their own.

In this workshop, we will work with a piece of classical music to create a plastique piece together. We will experience and discuss different ways for students to actively listen, analyze and embody the music, breaking it down into music subjects such as form, beat and subdivisions, rhythmic elements, dynamics, phrase, etc. Suggestions for classical pieces for plastiques will be shared and we will discuss the adaptations for students of all ages.

RSVP to infoatphiladanceprojects [dot] org.

Dawn Pratson earned her Dalcroze license in 2004, and was the founding music specialist at the Folk Arts Cultural Treasures Charter School in Philadelphia from 2005-2015. She is a musician (flute, piano, voice) and modern/contemporary dancer and choreographer. She teaches Dalcroze Eurhythmics at the University of the Arts and Temple University and teaches workshops around the U.S. and abroad.

The Performance Garage
1515 Brandywine Street
Philadelphia, PA 19130
Phone: 2155462552

Past Events

Bilateral Dance Artist Exchange 2017

July 24, 2017 - 5:00pm



April 2, 2017 - 1:00pm

Mady Cantor will share field-tested movement stories which incorporate skill-building, creative work, humor, and fun. Come explore the physical, cognitive and playful possibilities of storytelling through movement. The written stories and music will be provided. Learn them on Sunday, use them on Monday.


March 19, 2017 - 1:00pm

Join TAG for a workshop drawn from an arts-based research project and multi-disciplinary performance Same Story, Different Countries. SSDC was a two-year project exploring the socio-political phenomena of racism in the US and South Africa which recently culminated in performances and workshops in Johannesburg and Cape Town, led by Dr. Lynette Young Overby and A.T. Moffett. This workshop was part of that project and Dance TAG is glad to be able to share it with Philadelphia-area dance teaching artists.


March 12, 2017 - 1:00pm

Dance teaching in community and school settings often means that we work with groups of students with widely different skill levels and learning needs, and we have to create performance pieces that include all of them.

Resource/Idea Exchange led by Mady Cantor

December 4, 2016 - 1:00pm

DanceTAG participants swap their tips. Come prepared to show and share best practices….


Mady Cantor is the Director of Dance TAG, as well as Associate Director of Dance at Bryn Mawr College where she teaches technique, composition, repertory, and directs the Dance Outreach Project.  She has taught for many years in schools and community programs with a special interest in facilitating meaningful and joyful dance experiences for young people.