“To present world-class dance performance, increase public appreciation for the art, and provide quality dance education.”
WE SHOW OUR GRATITUDE TO ALL DANCE ARTISTS AND UPHOLD EQUITY, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION
Laguna Dance Festival values equity , diversity, and inclusion and is committed to furthering these values via each aspect of our mission to present world-class dance performance, increase public appreciation for the art, and provide quality dance education.
-As we move further into the 21st Century, we will continue to embrace a broader vision of cultural inclusion in the dance we present, including centering dance that is not born of the classical ballet of the imperial courts of Europe.
-The exquisite beauty of dance must also be relevant to our community if we are to survive as an art form and an organization. This will require a vision that is more inclusive, that is capable of acknowledging and respecting the diversity of human culture.
– An initial step is to create equal access and opportunity for all students, and where aspiring young dancers of all colors and races feel welcomed into the art form. Participation at the educational level is critical, and providing access to a broader and economically disadvantaged population is our commitment to the future.
– We are also working to increase equity, diversity, and inclusion in our internal operations to foster greater trust in how our organization is run.
Martha Graham said, “Dance is the hidden language of the soul.” We take this as our inspiration to leverage this amazing art form in pursuit of the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion.
Artistic Director and Founder
Jodie Gates has established a significant career in the dance field. For thirty-five years she has contributed to the profession as a visionary leader, artistic director, educator, curator, stager, choreographer and principal dancer. She is a former principal ballerina with the Joffrey Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Frankfurt Ballet and Complexions Contemporary Ballet.
She is the Founding Director of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, and Founder and Artistic Director of the Laguna Dance Festival. She is also an artistic collaborator with choreographer William Forsythe, and stages ballets internationally for Forsythe Productions. In June 2021, she was awarded the distinguished Fellowship from The Center for Ballet and the Arts at NYU. Her Fellowship acknowledges her most recent work as the lead initiator for the Artistic Directors Coalition for Ballet in America, a group of artistic leaders who are addressing systemic racism and inequities within the culture of ballet. READ MORE.