A Look Back at 2016


After 25 years of making dances depicting the human condition, relationships and the comically absurd, this year allowed me to look back and honor the dancers, the dances, and the archives of Adams Company Dance through the ages. What a gift to have been able to do the work I have been doing for all these years! I surely could’ve given up many times when the going got rough. I recently told a former student, who just started her own company, that the key to success is tenacity. It’s not all about talent or luck in this field, but it is about how well you can stick to it when the odds are against you. Balancing it all has been a challenge, but passion always trumps — oh dear, there’s that word…  Talk about challenges we faced this year, and one can only imagine what is to come with this guy in office. Ughh!

Through trials and tribulations on both a personal and global scale, I marched through 2016, with a bit of a ball and chain feeling I was dragging around. However, I know I was not the only one. My steadfast and stalwart rehearsal studio, ” The DANY,” closed their doors from the weight and pressure of the economy. Oh no! Thank God for trials though, as that is the stuff of creativity and art — but c’mon — enough already, 2016! I chose to celebrate my dancers, however. They are the committed ones that came through the muck and mire of their own personal trials, and like the phoenix rising from the ashes, they helped navigate through, using their ultra-talented gifts to fuel our choreographic endeavors. I owe everything to them!  Take a look here at their beauty in motion!

So looking back at the tenacious doings of 2016, I will remember fondly my Jin Shin Jyutsu Self-Help class for dancers at Greenwich Academy’s dance department, in Greenwich, CT; a fun podacst called “Quest Hands,” with one f my former dancers, Robert Halley, who started his own business; a summer into fall rehearsal schedule with James A. Pierce, III, working on our new dance “Sentimento Spirituale”;” our archival video shoot at Gelsey Kirkland Theater and our near-debacle, where we lost, then found all the video footage; our “Behind the Lens,” screening at the Bryant Park Hotel: our 25th anniversary celebration event; and lastly, the spiritually uplifting performance of James A. Pierce, III, in his new solo on the bill of Aries in Flight, at the West Park Presbyterian Church in NYC, where two performances that day allowed for a divine experience!

Most fondly, I will remember the dancers who showed up this year and performed in and attended our events — a reunion of my saints — who marched in some way, for some part, through these dance fields for the past twenty-five years, all who contributed to the essence of ACD; and, just like the postmen — through rain, sleet, snow, and hail — they delivered, no matter the weather… and that’s tenacity!

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Throwback artistic director’s moment
Film Screening at the Bryant Park Hotel
Film Screening at the Bryant Park Hotel
James A. Pierce, III
James A. Pierce III, in Sentimento Spirituale
Glenn Lonetybeing honored by Debra Levine at "Behind the Lens"
Dr. Glenn Loney being honored by Debra Levine at “Behind the Lens”
A moment with the dancers after the Bryant Park event: Milan Misko, Alana Kirzner,Chris Jackson, Mitzi Adams, Meredith Fages, Julie Fiorenza, Annie Heinemann

Celebrating 25 Years!

ACD celebrating 25 years
ACD celebrating 25 years

“Where do I begin? To tell the story of how great a love can be?” Sound familiar? The theme from Love Story is a little corny,  I admit, but true. Twenty-five years of a deep, passionate relationship to dance, the dancers, and the craft we’ve created together throughout the years, is a moving, telling story of love. Dance has been an ultimate channeling that has colored and shaped everything I’ve produced. Though more often than not it’s been a tough journey to stay afloat, being in the company of dancers has always kept me feeling alive. “In the company of dancers,” is what spawned Adams Company Dance. “C’mon over and let’s share in each other’s company, and if the mood strikes us, we’ll dance.” The name felt more like it came out of my living room than from a director’s chair, which is why I never named it, Adams Dance Company. The backward notion is more me– plus it’s a great conversation starter.

From the early stages of my career, I backed out of traditionalism and leaned toward the human side of making dance. It seemed from the get-go that I was not meant to engage in a big touring company with my name at the helm, and cookie-cutter dancers working beneath me. Most rehearsals focused on the process of creating, and allowing the dancers to add their own voice, and nuance. I never liked in performance for my “choreography” to be overshadowing the story. In other words, let the dance do its thing without the obvious outlines of the craft. If the dancers are really genuine, sensing their weight, and musically aware, the lines of choreography are blurred and you focus on the beauty. This comes from a deep trust in the studio, and from the human element of the artistic process.

25 years ago when I came to Connecticut from Arizona with my husband, I morphed my post graduate studies into my emerging career as a choreographer. 1991 was the beginning of renting vans, and schlepping props to venues throughout NYC. Back then, it seemed doable. It was easier to mobilize all units and get the job done. Dancers were ready, willing, and eager, and opportunities were always there, without paying to be involved with them. Really! Now, you have to pay on PayPal to apply for a gig–more on my thoughts on that in a blog to come! Taking care of the dancers that have worked with me has always been a priority. Providing pay, and a letter agreement to ensure all equality, was essential to allow for the dancer to feel that they were being honored, and accounted for professionally. It was never enough for all they contributed, but in the long-run, the gift of dance made up for the lack of remuneration they really deserved. I am so grateful to all of them for their loyalty and dedication!

From East to West and places in between, I carried my spirit of dance through these past 25 years. Performances wracked up, and dancers have come and gone, but the process will always be the gem I remember most in my heart. The times when stories were shared, tears were shed, laughter rang out, hugs were given freely, and new relationships were forged.  That’s the company of dance I’d like to continue keeping! That’s the love story that I hope keeps unfolding. Stay tuned for our Fall events celebrating our anniversary!

Please see our Anniversary Photo Album here!  See our celebration video here!