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SeattleDances is a dance advocacy organization dedicated to supporting Seattle-area concert dance through dance journalism and free resources to the dance community.
Journalistically, we sustain a platform centered on a culture of dialogue and critical thought, fostering a team of informed dance writers from a variety of perspectives. We believe journalism is essential to a healthy arts ecology. Reviews provide press and feedback to choreographers; interviews and event coverage amplify pivotal voices and news items. Dance writing plays a fundamental role in recording and framing this ephemeral art form, which is persistently underrepresented in major publications. Seattle is one of the country’s major hubs of dance innovation, and informed press is a key element in representing Seattle dance within the broader arts scene and the world at large.
Our free resources serve both the internal dance community and anyone interested in the form. Our site acts as a centralized source of dance information, including job and audition listings, and a city-wide calendar of dance performances. We also host in-person events that provide continuing entrepreneurial education for dance artists, to help support their careers and help give all area dance artists equal opportunity to succeed.
SeattleDances is a 501c3 tax-exempt organization. Donors can deduct contributions under IRC Section 170. Donate to SeattleDances here!
Established in 2009 by writer Rosie Gaynor, SeattleDances initially focused on the Pacific Northwest Ballet. Later, SeattleDances expanded its coverage to include a wide range of dance performances under the management of Kristen Legg in 2010, and subsequently Mariko Nagashima and Anna Waller from 2011 to 2016. In July 2016, management passed to Megan Stevenson and Kaitlin McCarthy, who have increased focus on local and independently-produced dance.
Who We Are
Executive Director: Megan Stevenson
Editorial Director: Kaitlin McCarthy
Board of Directors: Sandra Kurtz, Rosie Gaynor, and Nadya Matiya
Social Media Manager: Alyza Delpan-Monley
Meet Our Staff
Megan (she/her) is a Northern California-raised Seattle dance artist. She attended San Diego State University and graduated cum laude with a BFA in dance. During her time in San Diego, Megan choreographed works and made dance films, as well as performing in works by Leslie Seiters, Sara Shelton Mann, Joe Alter, and Patricia Sandback. In Seattle, she has had the opportunity to perform with Antonia Price, Anna Conner, and Corina Dalzell. In Spring 2015, Megan joined SeattleDances as Callboard and Calendar Intern, transitioned to Social Media Manager as well as a Staff Writer, and is now Executive Director.
Kaitlin McCarthy (she/they) is a Seattle-based dance artist, writer, and teacher. She has choreographed and performed across the city, as well as toured nationally and internationally as a dancer with MALACARNE Dance Company under the direction of Alice Gosti. As a freelance writer she has regularly contributed to City Arts Magazine, Dance International Magazine, and SeattleDances. Kaitlin began writing for SeattleDances in 2012, and became the site’s editor in 2016. She holds a degree in dance from Mt Holyoke College and teaches at Velocity Dance Center.
Risa Nagel (she/her) has been dancing since the age of 4, when a pediatrician recommended ballet as way to fix her pigeon-toed walk. She grew up dancing with Glen Dance Company in New York for 15 years. Risa uses writing as a medium to express her values and perspectives, she currently works as a grant writer for a statewide civil rights organization, whose mission is to revolutionize public education so that a child’s race does not predict their success. Her writing has been published in the Seattle Times and Huffington Post, and her activism has been featured in the New York Times. In 2017, a year after moving to Seattle, Risa joined 3rd Shift Dance Company, and continues to blend her passions for dancing and writing as a critic with SeattleDances.
Johanna Berliner (they/them) is a dance artist from North Carolina and a University of Washington graduate student in Museology. They began choreographing at Mount Holyoke College, where they graduated in 2016, and received a choreographer’s Workshop Grant from Tobacco Road Dance Productions (Durham, NC) for their 2017-18 season. They have performed at Mount Holyoke, Tobacco Road, Richmond Dance Festival, and eXit SPACE. Johanna co-runs Enbodyment, an Instagram project featuring nonbinary dancers (@enbodyment_proj) with Chris Strauss, & writes about dance and museums at johannaberliner.com.
Richael Best (she/her) grew up studying ballet at San Francisco’s City Ballet School under Damara Bennett and Galina Alexandrova. She has also trained in jazz, contemporary, hip hop, swing, ballroom dance, and musical theatre. A graduate of Whitman College with a degree in English, Richael is thrilled to combine her passion for dance with her love of words while writing for Seattle Dances. When she’s not attending dance shows, Richael works for Sasquatch Books, an independent publisher in Seattle.
Lynn (she/her) entered the Seattle dance community following her graduation from Wayne State University in her home state, Michigan, where she received a B.S. degree in Dance. Lynn has written creatively and academically for most of her life, and is excited to process the ever-interesting dance community Seattle has to offer through her words and reflections. Since moving to Seattle, Lynn has had the privilege of working with artists Pat Graney, Wade Madsen, Rainbow Fletcher, Nathan Blackwell, as well as many of her talented and daring peers. When not writing or dancing, Lynn teaches Pilates and experiments in dance film. Lynn is honored to contribute her voice in a city where inspiration and dialogue is abundant.
West Liberty (they/them) is a multi-disciplinary artist, graduate of the Cornish College of the Arts Dance program and founder of the Body as Teacher, a movement workshop for people of varying ages and abilities who are looking to have a healing conversation with their bodies through dance.
West has also danced professionally, most recently in ‘How to Become a Partisan’ (choreographed by Alice Gosti) which premiered at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Seattle in 2015. They have also presented choreographic works for and performed in numerous shows and festivals including Velocity Dance Center’s ‘The Bridge Project’ & Next Fest NW and On the Boards’ Northwest New Works Festival.
West premiered their second short film, Milo & Onyx in June 2019 at the Northwest Film Forum. Milo & Onyx was produced as part of the Blanket Fort Films Motion Picture Program and features an all trans and gender non-conforming cast and crew.
West is deeply invested in teaching and learning with others how to source wisdom from the body as a resource in humanity’s efforts toward liberation for all beings.
Sandra Kurtz (she/her) teaches and writes about dance in Seattle and elsewhere.
Meredith Pellon (she/her) is the Artistic Director of SLOWBURN Dance Company. She is a graduate of the BFA dance program at The University of the Arts, and her work has been featured in Pennsylvania Ballet II: En Avant and Koresh Artist Showcase in Pennsylvania, as well as in Ballet Inc.’s The Series, and Jennifer Muller/The Works HATCH Presenting Series in New York City. Since relocating to Seattle, Meredith has presented work at Performance Lab at On The Boards, Converge Dance Festival, Monomyth I (produced by Tuya Vale Artist Collective), Seattle International Dance Festival, Drove VII (produced by Chlo & Co. Dance), and 12 Minutes Max. Meredith also curates and produces a site-specific performance series entitled Soft Concrete. She began writing for SeattleDances in 2018, and before that she wrote for Phindie in Philadelphia.
Miranda is a writer for SeattleDances.
Imana Gunawan (she/her), a Texas-born Indonesian, is a storyteller, multimedia journalist, dance artist and creative director. Through her journalism and art work, Imana believes in realizing a more just world for those historically pushed aside. As manager and senior analyst, most days she leads breaking news coverage of Asia-Pacific for Dataminr. Imana’s works have been published on NBC News, The Jordan Times, ColorBloc Magazine, SeattleDances, and Humanosphere. In her art, she creates scenic, surreal dance-based worlds that center the stories of marginalized peoples, their ancestry, and their futures. Her dance works have been presented by Au Collective, On The Boards, American Dance Guild, Seattle Theater Group, and more. imana.co