Adam Castañeda

Adam Castañeda is a dancer and arts administrator in Houston, Texas. He is the Executive and Artistic Director of the Pilot Dance Project, a non-profit arts organization with the mission to empower and transform communities through innovative dance, theater, and visual art. With his company he has performed in evening-length works by Ashley Horn, jhon r. stronks, Jennifer Mabus, Jaime Walne-Fruge, and Heather VonReichbauer. When not with the Pilot Dance Project, he
enjoys performing with Suchu Dance/Jennifer Wood.

Three New Dance Artists Step Out of Residency, and into the (Barn)Storm

Three New Dance Artists Step Out of Residency, and into the (Barn)Storm

When Lauren Serrano moved to the Houston area to pursue an MFA from Sam Houston State University, the city and its arts scene were shuttered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Much of her early Houston dance experience was through the lens of a community navigating new dancemaking and dance presenting processes while balancing social distancing protocols. […]

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Jasmine Hearn Dances Generational History in Memory Fleet

Jasmine Hearn Dances Generational History in Memory Fleet

I have been thinking a lot about personal history lately. I have been interested, not so much in genealogy, but the architecture that goes deeper than bone, the family myths that make everyday life extraordinary. When you live in the same community your entire life, you understand that the past, present, and future often exist […]

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Michele Brangwen Explores Love as Wellspring of Activism 

Michele Brangwen Explores Love as Wellspring of Activism 

There is a moment in Faces of Sun and Wind where the quartet of dancers whirl in one direction, then the other. There is a fleeting snapshot of connection through the hands, in pairs, before each digs into the space around them, upper bodies swaying side-to-side. Their arms propel them into repeated high releases before […]

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Black Motherhood Explored in Mother, May I?

Black Motherhood Explored in Mother, May I?

In “Jezebel,” one of Loren Holmes’ early works, an anxious, unnerved woman in black negligee gathers herself in front of a vanity before putting on a red dress and dancing in a flirtatious, suggestive manner to an unknown audience. When she is done, she returns to the vanity. She is disturbed again, appearing to console […]

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When Dancing Takes on Politics in POP DEMO

When Dancing Takes on Politics in POP DEMO

6 Degrees Artistic Director Toni Leago Valle explores the three-ring circus that is contemporary politics in her latest show, POP DEMO, which runs through September 23 at the MATCH (3400 Main Street). The show’s characters are rendered as political cartoons who inhabit a 1920s-style speakeasy; Travis Prokop as Monsieur Ballista preening at the entrance reinforces […]

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Dr. Lindsay Gary Connects Places of Home in Space Taking Residency

Dr. Lindsay Gary Connects Places of Home in Space Taking Residency

Dr. Lindsay Gary, founder and artistic and executive director of Dance Afrikana, started her company with the simple objective of protecting the work of her fellow dancers. “We were not being advocated for,” she says, recalling her early years as a backup dancer for Afrobeats and Afro-Caribbean music acts. “There were situations where we weren’t […]

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DSH Artists-in-Residence Explore New Territory for Barnstorm

DSH Artists-in-Residence Explore New Territory for Barnstorm

Everyone needs a helping hand, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned after ten years in the non-profit producing world, it’s that artists very often need more than that. We need lifelines – a grant, a commission, a gatekeeper’s favor – something to propel us to the next stage of our artistic careers, and, by […]

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Silambam Celebrates Indian Independence in Waking Up Free

Silambam Celebrates Indian Independence in Waking Up Free

The great Indian subcontinent celebrated seventy-five years of independence from British colonial rule on August 15, 2022. To commemorate this significant milestone, Silambam Houston, under the executive and artistic direction of Lavanya Rajagopalan, presented Waking Up Free: India’s Journey, on March 31, 2023. The evening-length production, created in collaboration with Shri Silambam Academy in Chennai, […]

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Nao Kusuzaki Helms World Premiere of Genji

Nao Kusuzaki Helms World Premiere of Genji

Speaking with the eloquent and worldly Nao Kusuzaki about her new ballet, Genji, it occurred to me that I had experienced this quiet, yet, charged presence before. As our conversation progressed, I remembered that I had written about Kusuzaki’s performance in Stanton Welch’s Madame Butterfly more than a decade ago.  As a young dance writer, […]

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Joel Aguilera Checks “All of the Above” with First Evening-Length Concert

Joel Aguilera Checks “All of the Above” with First Evening-Length Concert

Joel Aguilera is a choreographer who has been gradually making his mark in Houston over the past few seasons. His work has appeared in several high-profile showcases, including Dance Source Houston’s Barnstorm Dance Fest, Dance Houston’s Annual Celebration of Dance, and Dance Source Houston’s Mind the Gap series. I recognized Aguilera’s rising star a few […]

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