Magazine article Dance Magazine

Curtain Up

Magazine article Dance Magazine

Curtain Up

Article excerpt

In 1967, when the Civil Rights Movement was in full force, DANCE MAGAZINE came out with a cover that caused a bit of a stir. It pictured Arthur Mitchell and Mimi Paul in Jacques d'Amboise's Othello, staring into each other's eyes. To see that cover now, it looks sweet and mild, with a hint of romance. But dancer and scholar Judith Brin Ingber, who had just taken a job as an editorial assistant at Dance Magazine, remembers the angry letters she had to answer from subscribers who were upset to see a black man and a white woman pictured together.

Have we come a long way? Yes. Obviously. And yet plenty of dancers still feel the burn of discrimination, from being shut out of certain roles to facing insidious assumptions about their abilities and style. Race is an issue that doesn't get talked about enough--at least not beyond the comfort zones. To help fill that gap, we are devoting most of our pages this month to the subject of race. You could call this the race issue issue.

Now, 38 years after that controversial cover, the demographics of the dance world in the U.S. have changed. Through a surge of immigration, we have not only white and black dancers, but also many more Latino and Asian dancers. "Beyond Tokenism: When Diversity Is Part of the Art" interviews choreographers who revel in the new diversity and make it part of their artistic mission. Other features reflect the perspectives of African American, Asian, and Latino dancers. We wanted to be both inclusive and practical, so we interviewed many other dance artists for "Other Voices" and outlined funding possibilities for culturally specific companies in "The Color of Money. …

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