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Call for Collaborating Artists


ODC Theater is thrilled to announce a call for collaborators from the Bay Area to participate in Rosanna Gamson’s Layla Means Night, a ten-performance premiere Oct. 30-Nov. 3, 2013. We are seeking professional dance ensembles with existing repertoire of traditional dances from the Silk Route, with specific interest in Persia, to join in the creation of this original evening-length contemporary dance theater project under the direction of Rosanna Gamson.

The participating artists will perform excerpts of their own repertoire within this new context, interweaving contemporary and traditional choreography to create a cohesive whole. Artists should have a desire to enter into a meaningful collaborative process beginning in July.

Rosanna Gamson's Layla Means Night (LAYLA) takes on the Persian story of Shahrzad, the clever bride whose storytelling saved her from a murderous husband. Featuring an original live score by Houman Pourmehdi and Pirayeh Pourafar, LAYLA will use lush dancing, delicious food, and smoke-and-mirrors magic to craft an intricate exploration of violence, complicity and our insatiable desire to be entertained. LAYLA's set, a portable labyrinth of tents, screens and scrims, will transform ODC Theater's entire building–studios, stairways, stage–into an interactive and immersive experience. Audience members travel in groups through the performance, and see different, interwoven shows, following different routes.

Discussion of compensation will occur following the proposal process.

If interested, please follow directions to apply and participate below. Proposals will be considered by Rosanna Gamson/World Wide in consultation with ODC Theater.

Proposals are due by 5pm on JUNE 3, 2013.

No fee to apply.

Deliverable electronically to or in person at the Front Desk of the ODC Dance Commons (351 Shotwell St., S.F. 94110) and addressed ATTN: Christy Bolingbroke, ‘Layla Means Night’ Call for Collaborators

-Performers must be based in the Bay Area.
-Performers must have at least 5 years of professional experience.
-All performers are required to attend technical rehearsals to be scheduled October 27-29, 2013.
-Participation in all ten (10) performances is required.
-Performers must all be 18 years old or older

(1) Submit a proposal with the following information:
-ARTIST STATEMENT: please tell us about yourself: your process, your history, and your interest in collaboration. 300 WORDS.
(2) Please submit a work sample.
-5 minutes maximum
-Online video links or URLs are preferred. Please provide any passwords to view, if needed.
-If unable to upload video, please provide a clearly labeled DVD. This will not be returned.

June 3, 2013 – Proposal due
July 3, 2013 – Performers Notified
October 27-29, 2013 – Technical Rehearsals

Performance Dates:
Wednesday, October 30 at 7pm & 9pm
Thursday, October 31 at 7pm & 9pm
Friday, November 1 at 7pm & 9pm
Saturday, November 2 at 7pm & 9pm
Sunday, November 3 at 7pm & 9pm

Additional information and application guidelines are available at

For artistic questions about the project, please call 213-250-7500 or email

A native New Yorker, Rosanna Gamson performed nationally and internationally as a member of Andrew DeGroat & Dancers, and in the dances of Yvonne Rainer, workshop performances of Robert Wilson, and in many others' dance projects. Moving to Los Angeles, she founded Rosanna Gamson/World Wide, her dance theater company which has been presented and commissioned by museums, theaters, festivals, and alternative performance spaces, including REDCAT, Grand Performances, and the Skirball Cultural Center, in Los Angeles; and in North America, the XXth International Hispanic Theater Festival in Miami, FL; Teatro Raul Flores Canelo de CENART and UNAM, in Mexico City; the Harbourfront Centre in Toronto; PICA's TBA Festival and the Dance Center of Columbia College, Chicago, among many others.

Gamson is a recipient of a special Lester Horton Dance Innovator Award for her body of work, and Hortons for Outstanding Achievement in Choreography, and in Reconstruction, and support from the National Dance Project and the James Irvine Foundation California DanceMaker Award. As Artistic Director of Rosanna Gamson/World Wide, she has created eight evening-length dance theater works for the company, including bi-national projects with Mexico City's Contradanza, and with CHOREA Theatre Association in Poland. Her most recent work, TOV, was an NPN Commissioning project in partnership with REDCAT and the Myrna Loy Center for the Performing and Media Arts, also supported by the Trust for Mutual Understanding. TOV was most recently presented in Poland, opening the Retro/Per/Spektyvy International Theater Festival.

Gamson has served as a teaching artist for NEFA's Regional Dance Development Initiative in Portland, OR and in Minnesota, and was a mentor in the Southern California Pilot of CHIME. She currently teaches Composition at the Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance at CalArts.

Houman Pourmehdi has performed live, on radio and on television throughout Europe, North America, Asia, and North Africa. His knowledge of traditional repertoire and intimacy with Sufi world serve a very personal style of interpretation and composition. He is the recipient of the C.O.L.A. 2008, L.A. Treasures Award 2004 and 2008, and ACTA the Folk and Traditional Arts Mentorship Initiative 2004 and 2006.

Pirayeh Pourafar studied at the Royal National Music Conservatory of Teheran and performed with Iran's most prestigious artists at the Center of Preservation and Propagation of Traditional Persian Music. Headlining on major festivals throughout the world, Pourafar is the recipient of the Durfee Master Musician Fellowship. One of the first women to play traditional Persian music outside Iran, she paved the way others to follow. Pourmehdi and Pourafar have scored documentary and narrative films, and with Lian Ensemble, the live score for UCLA Live's Medea, with Annette Bening.

ODC Theater has been located in San Francisco's Mission district for over thirty years. Nationally recognized as a cultural landmark, the Theater’s mission is to empower and develop innovative artists. It aims to participate in the creation of new works through commissioning, presenting, mentorship and space access; to develop informed, engaged and committed audiences; and to advocate for the performing arts as an essential component to the economic and cultural development of our community. Nationally known artists Spalding Gray, Diamanda Galas, Molissa Fenley, Bill T. Jones, Eiko & Koma, Ronald K. Brown/EVIDENCE, Ban Rarra and Karole Armitage are among those whose first San Francisco appearance occurred at ODC Theater. Today, the Theater is home to a thriving Artist in Residence Program, an acclaimed regional and national presenting program, a mentorship program for emerging professionals, and a subsidized rental program for self-producing artists.

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