Written By Josie Gulliksen
October 15, 2014 at 1:47 PM


Like dance? As the cultural season kicks off here is your chance to see ten of Miami’s top companies at one performance at the Dance Sampler with Daniel Lewis, being presented at the Little Haiti Cultural Center October 18 at 8 p.m. and October 19 at 3 p.m.

Participating dance organizations include Dale Andree, the TOC Project, New World Dance Ensemble, Pioneer Winter, Ballet Flamenco La Rosa, Repertory Dance Theatre Ensemble, GodoyPradera Projects, Arts Ballet Theatre of Florida, Karen Peterson and Dancers and Dance NOW! Miami. The Atma Yoga Dance Company will do a pre-show performance.

Produced by Dance NOW! Miami in collaboration with the Florida Dance Education Organization and Miami Dance Futures, the weekend offers a season preview of Miami’s established companies and choreographers. The showcase is the brainchild of Hannah Baumgarten and Diego Salterini, artistic directors of Dance Now! Miami, who after taking up residence in the Little Haiti Cultural Center and filling the venue night after night with dance performances, decided to establish the showcase.

The namesake of the event Daniel Lewis is the Founding Dean of the New World School of the Arts Dance Department and an internationally-recognized dancer, teacher, choreographer and author. Lewis further contributed to modern dance awareness in Miami, forming the Miami Dance Futures company in 1988, which has produced various local dance companies in its more than 25 years in existence.

“This sampler is named for Daniel Lewis who ran the Miami Modern Dance Sampler for over a decade at the Colony Theatre providing a season opener for all the local companies,” said Baumgarten. “Mirroring what his sampler achieved at the Colony, ours showcases much of South Florida’s established dance community and over the last three years more than 25 companies have participated.”

For Baumgarten, welcoming Dale Andree back into the world of professional choreography is one of the highlights given that Andree’s Mary Street Dance Theater was one of the earliest companies in the Miami dance community. “The fact that she’s decided to present again is very exciting,” she said. This event grew from Hannah and Diego’s hunger to give back to the community. Shortly after taking up residency at the center they began hosting fundraisers and special events then realized the best way to achieve giving back would be to open the doors to the center and give area residents access to Miami’s burgeoning dance community and also provide an outlet for the dancers to discover the venue.

As far at the dance sampler goes Baumgarten hopes that audiences open up to the idea of the wide variety of dance offered in Miami and that they don’t shy away from the unknown. “One of the most daunting aspects about contemporary dance is that audiences don’t know what to expect. I encourage audiences to experience our wide variety of dance from ballet to flamenco, classical modern dance to avant-garde dance theatre,” she said. “This will give them a more clear idea of both how diverse dance can be and specifically which companies they want to follow the rest of the year and beyond.”

The Little Haiti Cultural Center is at 212 NE 59 Terr. Tickets are $25 for general admission, $15 for students and seniors. Call 305-975-8489 for more info or visit 


About Artburst Blog

Artburst is media hub featuring hundreds of stories by top arts writers. Blog author Josie Gulliksen is a Miami native, long-time arts supporter, former arts writer for Miami Today and freelance writer. The blog features profiles on Miami’s arts organizations and leaders as well as coverage of relevant events in the music, dance and performance art community.

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