FACT/SF Fieldwork seeks to support the visibility, viability, and vitality of contemporary dance in the San Francisco Bay Area. FACT/SF Fieldwork includes three artist services and three programs in pursuit of our goal, and is a natural outgrowth of the field-development work FACT/SF has been doing since 2013. FACT/SF Fieldwork provides direct services to artists through CSW Consulting, Fiscal Sponsorship, and Co-Production Grants. We additionally facilitate artistic dialogues and offer educational opportunities through the Summer Dance Festival, Summer Dance Lab, and Winter Dance Lab.
In 2013, Jeanne Pfeffer (former FACT/SF Company Manager, current FACT/SF Board President) and Charles Slender-White (FACT/SF Founder & Artistic Director) took a strategic planning retreat to evaluate both what FACT/SF had accomplished since our founding in 2008 and what we could develop for the future. Our commissioning program, JuMP, came out of this meeting. Once each year, JuMP provided a comprehensive commissioning opportunity for a Bay Area-based artist. We ran JuMP for 3 years, commissioning work from Liz Tenuto in 2014, collaborative duo Lauren Simpson and Jenny Stulberg in 2015, and Katerina Wong in 2016. In 2015, FACT/SF began building a model for peer-organized regional touring (PORT). We launched PORT in 2017 with the LA Contemporary Dance Company, and will continue to build out this model in the coming years to support tours of other choreographers and companies in the western United States.
FACT/SF began offering its annual Summer Dance Lab in 2013, which typically includes Countertechnique, Gaga, and/or Forsythe Working Methods. Each year 20-30 dancers attend the week-long workshop, and past years have included dancers from the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Bulgaria. In 2018, we determined that a Winter Dance Lab could be of benefit to advanced Countertechnique practitioners seeking a more in-depth experience. 2019 is the first year of the Winter Dance Lab. We are also currently developing the FACT/SF Free School, which will provide free and on-going dance training for professionals in the San Francisco Bay Area.
In 2018, FACT/SF developed CSW Consulting to provide guidance, mentorship, dramaturgical support, and project management services to performing artists in the Bay Area and beyond.
Also in 2018, we observed that the local dance ecology needed additional options for fiscal sponsorship, and that we could continue the ethos of JuMP by offering co-production grants to provide additional support for performances happening in San Francisco.
As of 2019, the programs and services listed above have provided opportunity, education, and professional development for more than 150 artists.
Photos by Robbie Sweeny