Pro/Motion Special #26 July 6, 2020


Monday, July 6, 2020 is the day Massachusetts begins Phase 3, Step One of reopening. The City of Boston begins Phase 3 a week later, on Monday, July 13. 

You earned this through your commitment to public health.Thank you! But we have seen from reopenings in California and elsewhere that it is crucial to remain vigilant.

During Phase 3, fitness centers — including dance studios — and small cultural facilities including museums and theatres (that is, those smaller than places such as Gillette Stadium) are permitted to reopen.

Reopening is governed by strict protocols about capacity, social distancing and of course, mask wearing. For many organizations, this will require reduced in-person capacity and continuing use of virtual classes, rehearsals and performances.

Indoor gatherings are capped at eight people per 1,000 square feet with a maximum of 25, while outdoor enclosed gatherings (such as at a ball field) will be limited to 25% of permitted capacity with a maximum of 100. Capacity limits are expected to rise within Phase 3 over the course of the summer and into the fall. (When in doubt, your occupancy capacity is what is documented on your local occupancy permit.) Whenever possible, open your windows: the more air you can exchange with outside, the lower the viral burden in your space.

Dancers, teachers and administrators are all required to wear masks and physically distance. Partnering is not allowed.

Mass Motion’s studio floor taped to meet social distancing protocols.

We are going to be in Phase 3 for quite a while. Moving to Phase 4 is contingent on the development of vaccines and/or treatments that will enable resumption of “new normal.” Our responsibility is to make sure that our communities adhere to precautions so that we do not have to lock down again.

You can review the protocols for hygiene, sanitation and more here.  Special instructions for theatre venues,which can be extrapolated to indoor rehearsal practice are here. And here is a user-friendly review of why all of this matters.

Considering presenting an outdoor performance? The BDA portable floor is available. Need clarification about all the new guidelines? Contact BDA at We have access to public health and government experts who can get your questions answered.


Are you at risk of losing your housing because of Covid-19 related unemployment? There’s help through regional agencies across Massachusetts.


New Grant from the City of Boston!

Tomorrow, July 7, The City of Boston opens a $1 million Arts and Culture COVID-19 Fund for organizations that have been impacted by COVID-19.

The Arts & Culture COVID-19 Fund will help small and mid-sized arts and culture nonprofits adapt their programs, spaces, and operating models as a result of COVID-19. This includes costs for finding new safe spaces for performance and rehearsal, adapting existing facilities to comply with public health standards, developing new capacities in streaming and virtual engagement, addressing issues of equitable access on digital programs, retraining staff, and other costs associated with physically distanced program delivery.

Nonprofit organizations with budgets under $5 million, an organization address in the City of Boston, and the majority of its public programming in Boston are eligible to receive grants. Grants will range from $3,000 to $10,000 depending on the organization’s budget.

Summer Dance Festivals Come to You

The cancellation of 2020’s summer dance festivals was heart-breaking, but the deep archives of these major institutions give audiences a chance to experience great performances, master classes, artist interviews, and scholarly talks that they may have missed.

Jacob’s Pillow Virtual Festival running July 7-August 29 showcases ten years of  Berkshire performances from the Royal Danish Ballet to the all-star jazz tap of AND STILL YOU MUST SWING. You can even participate in a free community class to dance with your dog.

American Dance Festival Movies by Movers series is anchored by weekly conversations, and their website includes treasured performances and results of a 60-second video challenge (see the sample below).

Bates Dance Festival Online Summer Training for both young dancers (14-18) and adults happen this month and BDF@Home archival performances are posted weekly.

The Yard is offering virtual dance classes on Zoom, plus an inventive series called Yard Work where artists like the hilarious Deborah Lohse provide video snippets of their own work, a prompt, and then leave you to come up with your own creative product. Boston’s own Jenna Pollack offers her prompt the week of  July 30.

Tap City goes virtual this week with online classes and special teaching training seminars, film, conversation and a showing of works presented during the Somethings Afoot choreography showcases and Rhythm in Motion concerts in 2014 – 2019.

New York’s Joyce Theatre continues to stream  performances, primarily by artists of color, on Thursdays, and Dance Theatre of Harlem’s stream of its historic performances continues through July 25.