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Artist Residency


Cohesion Dance Project's 2024 Artist Residency

Supporting artists in the development of new work based on its

2024 Concept = An Exploration of Fractals

Organization Background


Cohesion Dance Project (CDP) is a non-profit dance production company whose mission is to create engaging performances and integrated educational experiences that enrich, inspire, and unite the community through dance. Founded in 2012 in Helena, MT, CDP envisions a community with an expanded perception of dance as an art form that fully embraces people of all ages, abilities, experiences, and backgrounds.


Description of Residency


CDP’s 2024 Artist Residency supports contemporary dance artists in the creative development of new work, from concept to final performance, and connects them with wider audiences through outreach, studio classes, and community engagement.  The 2024 residency seeks an artist/choreographer interested in exploring movement inspired by fractals – either those found in nature or the mathematics behind them.  Selected artist will collaborate with CDP’s Artistic Director and contribute choreography to the project. 


Residency dates:  6-8 weeks between April-May, 2024


Application Deadline:  November 30, 2023


Notification by:  December 20, 2023 (applications reviewed by selection committee)


Eligibility requirements 


  • Professional contemporary dancers/choreographers at any stage of professional development

  • Three years of instruction experience, ideally working with dancers from a broad age range and skill level (experience dancing with or instructing dancers with disabilities is a plus)

  • Choreographic experience working with a cast of ten+ dancers 

    • Assistance will be provided if choreographic experience does not include dancers of varying skill levels and abilities, including those with disabilities


Artist Residency Offers


  • Fully subsidized studio space for creation and rehearsal (three wheelchair accessible studios available with sprung marley floors, one of which converts to a blackbox theater, the Backstage Theater)

  • Collaboration with Cohesion’s Artistic Director for performance creation to be staged at the Backstage Theater

  • Staffing and resource support for performance promotion

  • Wifi; use of projection is available; potential collaboration with live musicians may be available pending funding support

  • Living accommodations, if needed, with a host family, at a local hotel, or at a rental home/apartment

  • Stipend of $2,500 covers teaching and outreach instruction as stated above; use of studios and Backstage Theater for creation, auditions, rehearsal, community engagement, and performance; access to CDP staff for event promotion and performance assistance; and costume and performance materials/supplies. 

  • If resident artist is not local then residency will include one round-trip flight within the continental US.


Expectations of Resident Artist


  • Collaborate with Artistic Director in the creative development of a 45+ minute performance based on the concept of fractals, either those found in nature or the mathematics behind them

  • Utilize at least 20+/- local beginning to advanced level community and professional dancers acquired via local audition.  Must include a broad age range and skill level, including those with disabilities (assistance in working with this broad range of dancers will be provided as needed)

  • Up to 10 hours of cast rehearsal each week

  • Community engagement and instruction through CDP’s school outreach programming and for project-specific events, schedule tba

  • Instruct one to two intermediate to advanced level contemporary classes weekly, for the remainder of the spring class session (session ends April 26, 2024)


Artist is responsible for:


  • Personal food/meals

  • Transportation in/around Helena and to/from outreach events

  • Personal items (smoking, vaping, drugs and alcohol are not permitted on CDP property nor in provided living accommodations. Artists who use these items are expected to use them responsibly when not on CDP or provided accommodation property)


Application - complete form at

Form includes the following questions:


  • Describe your proposed concept for the project and how you would incorporate the dancers identified above

  • Outline approximation of proposed timeline for the project (final dates will be determined after discussion with artistic director)

  • Ideas of how you propose to engage a broader community, such as studio showings, talks, workshops, etc.

  • Items to be uploaded:

    -  Resume/Personal Statement, including dance background, education, qualifications, reason       of interest and why you would be a good fit for this particular residency

-  Headshot and dance shot

-  Two professional letters of recommendation

-  Two to three video samples (no longer than 10 minutes total) of your work as a performer, educator, and choreographer in group work – including supporting statements for video samples discussing intention, creation, and discoveries made during the process.



What previous resident artists have to say:


Hannah Grace, 2023 Resident Artist: “Being a part of this residency was an incredible growth and learning opportunity as a choreographer and teacher. It challenged my tools and helped me to develop new ways of working as a facilitator and was a really beautiful chance to get to choreograph so many different levels of movement at once. The environment that exists at Cohesion is very open, which made me feel comfortable right away to share my ideas and practice, and the dancers were generous with their trust and enthusiasm. I also had so much creative freedom to create the show I envisioned and felt that the cast and staff trusted my choices all the way, which was so beautiful to receive!”

Alt Text: Hannah Grace poses for a close-up headshot

 Montana Roots

A visceral, playful and touching performance of dance, poetry, and music with 2023 Artist-in-Residence, Hannah Grace and a diverse local cast.

2023 Artist in Residence, Hannah Grace 

While in residence from March 1 to May 21, Hannah created and staged a new production titled “ROOTS,” inspired by Hannah’s own Montana roots. Like many, Hannah feels the urge and desire to explore the world and broaden her horizons. She feels deeply connected to Montana and desires to maintain a sense of grounding into her ancestral roots that anchor one in a place, while growing branches in other places, ie. she currently lives in London, UK. This idea resonated with Cohesion’s Founder and Artistic Director as she is a Montana native and has strong ties to this place called home, having returned to Helena to start Cohesion after a 10+ year hiatus. This is a large reason Hannah and the ROOTS project were selected for Cohesion’s Spring 2023 Artist Residency and premiered May 19-21, 2023 at Cohesion’s Backstage Theater as a part of Cohesion’s 10-year Anniversary Season.

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