Magazine article Dance Magazine

DRA: Remembering Dancers with HIV/AIDS in a New Way

Magazine article Dance Magazine

DRA: Remembering Dancers with HIV/AIDS in a New Way

Article excerpt

New ideas, old traditions, and a diverse mix of dancers will come together this December to raise money and awareness for dance professionals with HIV/AIDS. Since 1991, Dancers Responding to AIDS (DRA), a program of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, has been organizing benefit concerts, holding contests, conducting audience appeals, and selling merchandise.

For the past 10 Decembers, DRA presented the Remember Project, a 12-hour marathon performance in Manhattan dedicated to the remembrance of those lost or living with HIV/AIDS. Last year the project celebrated not only its 10th anniversary but also a grand finale concert. DRA has not slowed down since the project's conclusion. They will present a new event to be held December 12 at Cedar Lake Theater in Chelsea.

Denise Roberts Hurlin co-founded DRA with fellow former Paul Taylor dancer Hernando Cortez (who now heads Verb Ballet in Cleveland). She says, "Like with many things, you are called to action from your personal experience." In 1995, the Remember Project began as a response to the need to come together and mourn the loss of friends who had died from HIV/AIDS. Roberts Hurlin says she feels the project has run its course. "It served its purpose for 10 years. It didn't have the same resonance in 2004 as it did in 1995." With the completion of the project, when Cedar Lake offered their theater, DRA jumped at the chance.

A name has not been finalized for the new event, but DRA expects it to be an upscale gala evening. …

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