Friday Gala Concert at the Southern Vermont Dance Festival

The Southern Vermont Dance Festival is excited to announce the Friday Gala Concert at 8 pm on Friday, July 19th at the Latchis Theater.  Artists from around the country will join us for an incredible performance, full of dancers and choreographers at the top of their field. The Gala will feature a variety of modern and contemporary dance styles that explore interesting social themes with rich, beautiful movement. Tickets to the Gala Concert are $18 for students, or $24 general admission in advance, and $24 for students, or $28 general admission at the door. Tickets may be purchased at

The Friday Gala will feature two incredible works by renowned artists.  First will be a solo created for Julie Muskat by Janet Wong, Associate Artistic Director of Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. Premiering in San Rafael, California in 2010, it explores themes of transition and precipice, and fluid versus fixed identity traits.  We welcome the culmination of the collaborative process that created this work to the Gala stage.

We are pleased to announce a work performed by Vanessa Knouse that is courtesy of the Merce Cunningham Trust as part of the Cunningham Centennial Celebration.  This solo is titled “Suite for Five.” Vanessa debuts as both artist and faculty, bringing her expertise to Vermont at this year’s festival.

We also welcome Laura Katz Rizzo, a new artist to the Southern Vermont Dance Festival will show.  She holds a BA in History and English, an Ed. M. in Dance, and a Ph. D. in Dance and Women’s Studies. She has performed with several ballet and contemporary dance companies, and as an independent performer and choreographer, recently presenting her choreography at The Outlet Dance Project (NJ) , The In Hale Performance Series (PA) , The Small Plates Choreography Festival (VA) and The Jennifer Muller/The Works Presenting Series (NY). Her screen dance, Takako Vs. 9 Lives, made in collaboration with filmmaker Lauren Wolkstein, has been selected and screened at various film festivals across the world including: The Frame Light Festival (London), The Guiar Screendance International Festival (Brazil), The InShadow Lisbon Screen Dance Festival (Portugal), and the Cucalorus Film Festival (North Carolina). She is author of “Dancing the Fairy Tale: Producing and Performing “The Sleeping Beauty” (Temple University Press, 2015), as well as many other publications.

Artist Sonia Plumb returns for our 7th season. She will perform Sarcophagus, an embodiment of an artist’s struggle, acknowledgement and letting go of the art that he/she creates, and those that inspire and support him/her. In Leonardo’s Davinci’s words, “For, verily, great love springs from great knowledge of the beloved object, and if you little know it, you will be able to love it only little or not at all.”  SVDF is thrilled to see several parts of of this extended work throughout the four day festival.

Debuting their work at this year’s SVDF is Donna Selgado of Continuum Contemporary Ballet.  She choreographed the edgy “Concerto Geloso,” an edgy and energetic neoclassical ballet, to the score of Vivaldi’s Concerto For Violin And Strings In E Minor RV 281. Geloso is the Italian word for jealousy, and the work in 3 parts explores the subject through the ideas of envy, rivalry, and confidence.

Returning to the festival will be hometown favorite IBIT Dance Company featuring a new work by local IBIT choreographer and festival founder/director Brenda Siegel.  This work title “Grief I Am” is set on company member and director of SVDF scheduling, Tasha Warshaw. It explores the embodiment of grief and loss.

Local artist and owner of the Brattleboro School of Dance, Bridget Struthers will show a solo work. Struthers previously traveled from New York City to perform at the dance festival. She has returned to her roots, and is now bringing her art back home. It is well worth meeting this incredible artist!

To purchase tickets, sponsor events, volunteer or learn what you can do to support this festival, visit   

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