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.

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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Diavolo Returns to Houston with City’s Premiere of S.O.S.

Diavolo Returns to Houston with City’s Premiere of S.O.S.

Diavolo is a dance company not for the faint of heart. When you watch Trajectoire, one of Artistic Director Jacques Heim’s signature works, you’re held captive by the gravity-defying assignment at hand. Dancers maneuver a 3,000-pound boat using only momentum to catapult themselves into the air with stunning accuracy, not to mention fluidity and grace. […]

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Silambam Showcases the Diversity of Classical Indian Dance through the Cosmos

Silambam Showcases the Diversity of Classical Indian Dance through the Cosmos

The more I write about dance, and think about dance, the more I realize how much dance has always been present in major moments of my life, even forms that are outside of my own practice. Eleven years ago I spent five-and-a-half months backpacking through India, attempting to read, journal, and experience my way into […]

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Kyle Abraham Goes Untitled in Exploration of Black Love

Kyle Abraham Goes Untitled in Exploration of Black Love

Listening to the music of D’Angelo is a kind of sensual, indulgent experience that is rooted in the pleasure of being in one’s own body. The crooner’s voice is rich in texture, and sultry in pitch, fully realizing the seductiveness of masculinity while recognizing its potential for softness and comfort.  D’Angelo’s music is also a […]

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