Happy 13th Birthday, DanceWorks Chicago!

Thank you!

Thank you to our wonderful community of supporters for sharing a fantastic 13th birthday! We are inspired by your support and deeply grateful for the chance to share with you some of the important achievements that your contributions have made possible on behalf of young artists.

For those who were not able to join us online, it’s not too late to make your contribution in support of our work:

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We look forward to continuing to build on this wonderful momentum to create a brighter, more equitable future for our arts commUNITY!

Celebrating Young Artists

As part of our celebration, we’re asking for your support by making a donation today in any amount.

Your donation helps provide:

  • Paid dance positions with access to healthcare and retirement benefits
  • Mentorship for young artists from renowned leaders in the Chicago dance community
  • Artist fees for choreographers
  • Merit- and need-based scholarships for young dancers to attend our ground-breaking, holistic dance training workshops through Dance360
  • Rehearsal time to develop new work
  • Theater rental for performances, connecting artists and audiences!
  • Open company classes for the dancers to train, grow, and network

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Birthday Reflections by DWC Artists Present and Past

When you support DanceWorks Chicago, you support young Creators looking to be/become the change! - Demetrius McClendon

"When you support DanceWorks Chicago, you support young dancers searching for a deeper understanding of heARTistry and how that can help create/build/sustain beloved community. As a person of color who has always been passionate about using heART to impact my community (i was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago), i deeply appreciate the many invaluable lessons i discovered being a part of the DWC family.


"Groomed to support and enable the holistic growth of young thinkers, DWC is an intellectual, spiritual, and wonder-filled playground that challenged/invited me and others to think of excellence as a practice: every day is an opportunity to use heART to shape a living and evolving masterpiece that understands life is a journey, a process of being and becoming, which becomes so much more enriching when we choose to embrace it as such, using our gifts to paint/inspire a contrast-filled world in need of more light. When you support DanceWorks Chicago, you support young Creators looking to be/become the change!"

-Demetrius McClendon

Please help us continue to make an impact in the lives of young artists with a donation today. Contributions of any size can and do make a real difference for these aspiring youth:

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Racquel Mar

"In my two seasons as a company member and dancer, I have absorbed much that I will forever be grateful for. This company has helped me confidently acknowledge and realize my potential as an artist and human, taking responsibility for the choices I make and exploring every single angle and character of what makes me the best I can be. Julie gives us this amazing platform and endless opportunities to try, and try with all that we have, to achieve greatness. As she says, ‘let’s take it from good to great.’ Being with my fellow dancers and Julie makes me want to do and be better.


"Taking a holistic view on everything that we have to offer one another, I aspire to be a sponge, soaking up experiences with the other dancers, being inspired by their choices and then offering them something to be inspired by. As our company is a small one, we get to know one another very well. We are all here to work and grow together as one unit. There are not many places or companies that offer an experience like we have at DanceWorks Chicago, and I am forever grateful to have been a part of this organization and family."

-Racquel Mar

Choreographer Joshua Manculich

"DanceWorks Chicago is soon to be 13-years-old, and as a featured choreographer for almost six years – with the company touring my work to Europe, Mexico, and across the nation – I am extremely grateful for being a part of the family. Dance attends to the WHOLE person – mind, body, and spirit; it builds character. This is where DanceWorks Chicago shines – the organization considers the person – the dancer – the artist.


"Connection is key to Artistic Director Julie Nakagawa, and my own choreographic path has been amplified through her selfless and numerous introductions – made between me, an aspiring choreographer – and directors seeking ambitious emerging artists. One e-introduction eventually transpired into me winning a Princess Grace Award – Choreography in 2015. To summarize what DanceWorks Chicago means to me, well that would need to be said through dance. Maybe in a work of gratitude!"

-Joshua Manculich

Help us continue as a creative incubator for the next generation of artists. You donation of any size today will make a difference:

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