Mathew Janczewski's ARENA DANCES is a contemporary dance company based in Minneapolis. The company performs the choreography of Janczewski, creates performance & resource-building platforms for local dance-makers, & enriches dance education with school outreach programs. As we embark on our 25th season, ARENA DANCES is ever-growing - and we want YOU to be a part of the fun.
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Local performances are just one of the highlights of our year as Artistic Director Mathew Janczewski continues to create new works on the talented cohort of ARENA's professional dancers. Bringing timely themes into conversation on the stage, Janczewski's work merges artistry & social engagement.
"Addictive to watch, and throughout there are glimpses of luxuriant motion."
— Lightsey Darst, MNArtists.org
HOLD MY HAND Hits the Road
In the spring and fall, ARENA DANCES will bring hold my hand to the communities of Brainard, Duluth, and Detroit Lakes. The performances will feature local choirs & the lush music of "Requiem," an original score by Minnesota composer Joshua Clausen. One of my favorite shows, hold my hand explores gun violence in America, and seeks to create awareness & dialogue around this pressing issue.
5th Annual CANDY BOX Dance Festival
Promoting other Twin Cities Artists, ARENA curates the annual CANDY BOX Dance Festival, an eclectic annual week-long array of performances, workshops, and public sharings featuring a range of local dance-makers. Through shared performances, intimate workshops, Q&A sessions and the rare sneak peek at works-in-progress, both artists and audience members make new connections, gain deeper understanding of the creation process, and develop stronger knowledge and appreciation of the field of dance. Like all the delightful surprises to be found in a box full of chocolates, CANDY BOX Dance Festival features the best sweets in town!
THERMAL in the Works
Our newest creation, Thermal, will begin to take shape next summer at a Tofte Lake Artist Residency with four of our dancers. Centered around the issue of climate change, Thermal will connect individuals concerned about the future of our planet with environmental experts and actionable resources. During the course of its creation, we will share in-progress showings outdoors along Lake Superior in Duluth and Grand Marais, and subsequently, along the Mississippi River in St. Paul. The culminating event will be a month-long premiere in the winter of 2022 at the American Swedish Institute.
DanceON - Virtual Learning Arrives at South High School
DanceON, an on-going outreach program that brings ARENA DANCES to various Twin Cities' public schools. For the past 2 years, ARENA DANCES has been in partnership with Creative Arts Secondary School, Rosevelt High School and Highland Park Senior High School. The overall program consists of bi-yearly, week-long, deeply immersive residencies in which the company teaches students how to talk about and make dances, rehearses on-site in an open setting and enjoys sociable time over lunch with students and faculty. The hope is to continue to fold both new schools and new dance companies into the programming to reach more students and expose youth to a multitude of dance aesthetics, cultures and forms. This year will we add South High School and Red Wing to the cohort.
MOVING TARGET: Making Space for a New Cast of Teachers, Performers, and Choreographers
Formed in response to the dance community's desire for a more diverse offering of techniques taught in the Twin Cities, Moving Target gives each of its professional dancers the chance to teach, regardless of their age or experience. Aiming to give rise to new teachers and choreographers, this cohort-led class series prioritizes rigor, diversity of aesthetics and commitment.
Floor Work is a triannual series of discussions on all things dance. Open to all as a space for conversation and sharing of ideas, knowledge and resources, each Floor Work focuses on a different topic relevant to life as an artist - from taxes as an freelancer to creative tools for choreographic processes. This series often invites experts on the topic to assist in facilitating conversation and offer their wealth of knowledge on the topic.
- Donate today to ensure that these programs continue to thrive and serve the Twin Cities' community
- Sponsor ARENA DANCES as an individual or company. Email mdarenadances@gmail to get started
- Attend our upcoming events, more info on what's next here
- Join our Board of Directors! We are in search of dance enthusiasts with expertise in a variety of fields to join our team. Interested? Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get connected