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About Us

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The Open Dance Ensemble, based in New York City and founded in January 2017, presents live, self-conducted improvised dance performances to share the excitement, joy, and beauty of dance with our audiences. Following in the footsteps of the Judson Church Theater, where improvisation first became a part of modern dance in 1962, and drawing upon Karl Berger's Creative Music Studio conducted music improvs which began in 1974, the Open Dance Ensemble created self-conducted improvisation, a new form of dance choreography in which the movers not only improvise but also conduct each other as the performance unfolds.

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We are interested in the aesthetics of dance and have no political agenda. Our dance philosophy can be traced to Immanuel Kant: “ Taste is the faculty of estimating an object or a mode of representation by means of a delight or aversion apart from any interest.” (The Critique of Judgement,1793). We hope to share the excitement, joy and beauty of dance with our audiences. Nevertheless, the quasi-collective way we create and perform could be viewed as a metaphor for social or political organization and as such may be relevant to the certain issues of the day.

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