Every year, dozens of emerging choreographers vie for a spot on Moving Current's New Grounds program. Only eight get a chance to show off their work.
The prestigious Tampa competition this year drew choreographers from as far away as Houston to showcase their work at the New Grounds concert Friday and Saturday evenings on the University of South Florida campus.
Young choreographers are given a chance to showcase their work, often for the first time, on a professional stage. They may be recent college graduates or established dancers in a company with a set repertoire.
All participants submit tapes of their work to Moving Current, which for 15 years has been the premier modern dance company in the Tampa Bay area. The company enlists an outside panel of dance experts to select the winners.
This year, more than 30 choreographers applied, a healthy number although in some years more than 60 have applied.
Moving Current only solicits from around Florida, but New Grounds has such a strong national reputation companies from across the United States regularly apply,
Local choreographers can use Moving Current dancers. Those from other areas have to bring their own dancers at their own expense so it's a major investment of time and money for a company from Houston to appear at New Grounds.
Of the eight choreographers this year, two are from Jacksonville Dance Theatre. and others from Tallahassee's Alloy Dance Co., Valdosta's Critical Mass Dance Co. and Houston's Momentum Dance Co. each have one choreographer on the New Grounds Program.
Tampa's Melissa Torres, recent USF graduate Raven Jones and Emily Cargill of Atlantic Beach also have works on the program.
Details: 8 p.m. May 17-18, University of South Florida Theatre 2, 3829 W. Holly Drive, Tampa. Tickets: $16 general, $12 students. Information: 813-237-0216 or www.movingcurrent.com.
-- Marty Clear