Dance International is devoted to covering a wide spectrum of contemporary and classical dance from Canada and around the world. Our in-depth features, reviews and reports by established and emerging writers build a lively conversation around dance. Dance International was launched in 1977 in Vancouver, British Columbia, by the Vancouver Ballet Society as a quarterly publication, with its last print issue dated Winter 2019. As of January 2020, it became a web-only platform, still proudly supported by the Vancouver Ballet Society.
Dance International welcomes pitches from both emerging and established writers from Canada and internationally. Potential contributors should review our website to get a feel for the kinds of stories we publish. If you decide we are a good fit, send us your story pitches, with a CV and samples of your published writing attached or with direct online links. Remember the pitch itself is a sample of your writing and research skills, so please make it concise but thorough. Lead times are variable, although longer leads are usual for new contributors. Send to: email@example.com
Writing About Dance, 2020
By Kaija Pepper, Editor, Dance International
This is a rich time in the evolution of theatrical dance. Onstage, an abundance of possibilities are found, everything from abstract choreography that gloriously shouts out the fact we exist, that we are here in these bodies, to narrative works with characters and plot, to socially and politically themed critiques. A huge palette of dance styles, as well as other forms like film and circus, feed dancemakers today.
All of this gives dance writers a lot to ponder. So it is unfortunate that, just at this moment, many print magazines and newspapers have folded or downsized — including Dance International, which now publishes here, on its website, only. For writers, this means opportunities and support systems are dwindling.
Some writers have taken things into their own hands by setting up a personal website and blog. This removes the biggest hurdle of the old system, in which editors and publishers were gatekeepers: Now you can publish your own work, as often as you want, without them. It also means, however, that the creative conversation involving writers, editors and publishers is gone. Curated systems make for an often rowdy enterprise, with many disparate demands, but they also build community and vision, bringing together a range of people and ideas.
The challenge with today’s curated web platforms, however, is how to monetize. Most newspapers allow a certain number of free articles a month online and encourage subscribing to get more; some have no restrictions, but run donation requests at the end of articles. Some of the print magazines I read offer additional free online content, sometimes as a benefit for subscribers only, but sometimes for everyone. How long can these models be sustained?
For now, like many others, I enjoy being able to easily access arts writing with a few taps on my computer keyboard. The writers I keep going back to know how to write a good story, and are also socially, culturally and aesthetically aware. In their features and reviews, they develop their own independent angle, free of the publicity machine, with well-informed thoughts and opinions feeding their work.
Dance International exists to support just such independent and talented voices. Like other web platforms, though, we struggle with funding our site, relying on the limited amount of public support available for this kind of initiative, as well as on advertisers and donors. If you believe in what we do, please consider joining us either by advertising your business on our website or through a donation (tax receipts are available, and even small amounts are deeply appreciated as a sign of your support).
Change is the one thing we can be sure of, certainly in dance, which never stands still for long. As 2020 steams ahead, we carry enthusiastically on.
Dance International gratefully acknowledges the support of: