Gut response


When I told the dancers about the theme of The Black Space, there was a response that I couldn’t identify.  There was a moment of total silence, and then, nods and sounds of understanding and identification.  Maybe a little fear, too?  Anyway, I thought it would be a good idea to find out just what that first bit of silence was.  What were they thinking?


Here’s what Ashley said:

“It’s amazing how much words affect who you are to other people, regardless of whether or not the words are true.

Thinking about what other people may or may not say about me makes me want to be gentler, softer, more lenient with my opinions and thoughts.  Things said in haste or ignorance or anger can cause exponential suffering in less familiar hands.”

photo by Sil Azevedo, from CONTEXT by Frame Dance Productions

Links We Like Friday

Links We Like

We have a special curator this week. Stephanie Todd Wong is the Executive Director of Dance Source Houston. She holds a BA in Dance from Mercyhurst College, as well as an MFA in Dance from George Mason University. Originally from Kentucky, she moved to Houston in 2008 from the Washington DC area where she spent ten years choreographing, dancing and teaching. While there, she was a dancer in the Dakshina/Daniel Phoenix Singh Dance Company, had her work showcased at both Joy of Motion and Dance Place, as well as created a high school dance program for The Flint Hill School. Stephanie also served as the Interim Director of Dance/MetroDC, a local branch office of Dance/USA. She is the mom of two beautiful little girls who also love to dance!

You’ve Cott Mail – not really a website, so I’m bending the rules. But this is an email digest put together by Thomas Cott, Director of Marketing for Alvin Ailey, that I make time to read every single day (and considering my schedule, that says a lot!). Invaluable, and Thomas Cott is going to be speaking at the Houston Arts Resource Fair tomorrow, so I’m super excited about that! – I like to read but I don’t necessarily always want to spend a lot of money to keep up with my habit. I found this website a few years ago from a friend and it has been an awesome resource. You create a free account and list the ISBN numbers of any books you have at home that you no longer need/want to keep. Other members of the site can then request one of your books and when a request is made you mail that person the book. When they receive it, you get a credit to your account that then enables you to make a request for a book that gets sent to you for free! You can put your name on wait lists for popular titles and are notified when a copy is available and you can create wish lists of books you want to get in the future. I think they also have sister sites for movies and music, but I’ve never made it past the books.

All Songs Considered  – This is a site I used to spend a lot more time on than I do now, but I miss it! It was created several years ago by Bob Boilen who used to direct All Things Considered on NPR. He so enjoyed finding new music for the music buttons between stories for that program that he created an entire program just for the music. It’s a great resource for finding new music and getting in depth info about music you already love.

Virtual Pillow  – This time of year, when I’m jealous that I can’t be in the Berkshires enjoying the immersion of dance happening at Jacob’s Pillow, I find myself gravitating to the Virtual Pillow. It’s an online exhibit of video excerpts from all the years of performances at the Pillow. It’s so easy to get lost in this site.

Finally, I’m also a mom, so the New York Times blog, the Motherlode, is also one of my faves (because we all like to be reminded that we’re not alone on this great adventure called parenthood).

The Black Space, coming Aug. 30- Sept. 2


It’s time to give you the low down, the nitty gritty on our upcoming show.  I’ll start with an image:

Next, I will give you a little description.

Fresh Arts invites audiences into the visual and visceral world where the performing and visual arts meet in The Black Space by Lydia Hance’s Frame Dance Productions. The Black Spaceis a multi-media dance installation and performance, running August 30 through September 2 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10.

Participatory and intimate in design, The Black Space explores the concept of forgiveness and the dichotomy between the sanity and healthiness of letting go and the unresolved anxiety that results from holding on to how others have wronged us. The Black Space is live dance performance, dance-on-screen, new sound scores, and the instinctive need to find forgiveness in the midst of injury.

Frame Dance Productions is dedicated to making innovative and vulnerable works.  Frame Dance gives permission to the viewer to interact in any way, to allow the audience to shape both their own experiences and the experiences of the other audience members. The space is intimate, and there is no stage. Patrons are encouraged to enter the performance at any time after 8 p.m., walk through the space, get close to the dancers, interact with the projections, and shape their own experience. Each performance will conclude by 9 p.m. and the audience will be encouraged to stay for a reception with the artists.

What the heck is Fresh Arts?

About the “new” Fresh Arts:

Fresh Arts is committed to supporting and inspiring artists, strengthening Houston’s arts organizations and creative community and deepening public participation in the arts. In April 2012, Fresh Arts was formed with the merger of two local arts service organization, Spacetaker and Fresh Arts Coalition. Through Summer 2012, more information can be found at

 The Summary:

Fresh Arts invites you to The Black Space, a multi-media dance installation and performance by Lydia Hance’s Frame Dance Productions. Participatory and intimate in design, The Black Space explores the concept of forgiveness and the dichotomy between the sanity and healthiness of letting go and the unresolved anxiety that results from holding on to how others have wronged us. Spacetaker Gallery at Fresh Arts (2101 Winter Street)—$10.


And the necessary Deets.  Please note: Fresh Arts is selling the tickets on their websiteWe will not be selling tickets on our website.  Good chance to see what they’re all about.  But share some love with too.  Otherwise, we’ll miss you.  🙁


WHAT:        Exhibition: Frame Dance Productions | The Black Space

WHEN:       August 30 & 31 and September 1 & 2, 2012

All shows begin at 8 p.m.

WHERE:     Spacetaker Gallery at Fresh Arts | 2101 Winter Street, B11, Houston, TX 77007

COST:        $10 – reserve your seat by making a purchase at

MORE INFO: or call 713.868.1839

Why Dance Matters

Hi Readers,
Check out the fabulous event hosted and founded by our very own Nichelle Strzepek.  If you believe dance matters, tell the world why this week.
JULY 23 – 28

Why Dance Matters is a virtual event that rallies the dance community online to affirm the impact dance has on the lives of individuals and communities.

If you’re on Facebook,  share and invite friends to take part!

If you’re on Twitter:

Use that 140 characters to tell the world Why Dance Matters to you! Be sure to use the #whydancematters hashtag. You can start anytime but we want to see a flurry of tweets between July 23 and July 28.

If you’re on Pinterest:

Follow the Why Dance Matters board and Repin as desired.


Links We Like Friday

Links We Like

She’s  pretty much a celebrity in Houston’s art culture.  She’s our guest curator for this week’s Links We Like.

She’s K.C. Scharnberg.

Finding Balance


#1: I don’t get a whole lot of time to read for pleasure these days, but when I do, I love to read Fast Company. There I find a fabulous mixture of practical advice and inspiration for the creative, the leader, the motivated individual.


#2: Paradoxically, I’m preoccupied by slowing down and by the shift that many humans are beginning to make for themselves in direct protest of our world becoming increasingly busy. Many of us are caught up in the “busy” trap. I’m personally trying to make daily efforts to get myself out of this trap. I’m trying to make a shift towards riding my bike instead of driving, spending less time at the computer, making more regular plans with friends, and just allowing myself to have idle time. The Slow Movement website is full of inspiration to get me there. “The Slow Movement aims to address the issue of ‘time poverty’ through making connections.”


#3: I recently attended a conference at Soka University of America in Aliso Viejo, CA, and was so inspired by hearing the experiences of alumni and current students that I’ve begun to look much more seriously at the Soka model of humanistic education. The Soka education philosophy was founded by Japanese educator Tsunesaburo Makiguchi, furthered by Josei Toda, and made accessible outside of Japan by Daisaku Ikeda. In a nutshell, “Soka (value creating) education takes the human being as its focus and makes developing the humanity of each individual its objective. It emphasizes the nurturing of students who, through relationship with educators who are themselves attempting an inner “human revolution”, are capable of establishing personal happiness and creating value in society.” (See Ikeda Center website) Doesn’t that sound like the way you’d want to grow up learning?! I just ordered the book Soka Education and can’t wait to dive into it.


#4: Cute Overload! This is my favorite way to waste time on the internet. Everything is soooooo cuuuuuuttteee!!!


#5: Another guilty pleasure….Post Secret! Laugh. Cry. Repeat.


More about K.C.

K.C. Scharnberg – Program Director, Fresh Arts

Raised in Denton, Texas by classical musicians, K.C. Scharnberg developed a deep appreciation for all art forms at an early age. While earning her B.A. in Humanities at The University of Texas at Austin, K.C. developed her professional skills with internships in arts management at the UT Performing Arts Center and the Arts Management Institute at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC.

Prior to joining the Fresh Arts staff in 2010, K.C. held positions at the Department of Theatre & Dance at The University of Texas at Austin and Elmore Public Relations in Houston.

As Program Director of Fresh Arts, K.C. manages and oversees the organization’s exhibition series, professional development curriculum and training, and all other physical programming including the Cultured Cocktails series, Artist Speakeasy series, and special events such as the annual Winter Holiday Art Market.

Outside of work, K.C. serves as an Advisory Board member of the Boniuk Center for Religious Tolerance at Rice University, is active in her Buddhist organization, the Soka Gakkai International (SGI-USA), and serves as a founding member of Houston-based Horse Head Theatre Co.