Thomas DeFrantz

Thomas DeFrantz.

Professor of African & African-American Studies and Dance
Duke University
Durham, NC

Dance Panelist, 2013

Thomas F. DeFrantz founded and directs SLIPPAGE: Performance|Culture|Technology, a multidisciplinary research collective that explores connections between performance and emergent technology in the service of theatrical storytelling. Recently, DeFrantz presented “Performing Black,” a performance lecture for “This & That: Day of Walking, Talking, and Watching,” part of the PLATFORM 2012: Parallels series at Danspace Project, New York. Other creative work includes Queer Theory! An Academic Travesty, commissioned by the Theater Offensive of Boston and the Flynn Center for the Arts. He co-convenes the working group Black Performance Theory as well as the international group Choreography and Corporeality of the International Federation for Theatre Research. He is currently president of the Society of Dance History Scholars. A prolific author, his books include Dancing Many Drums: Excavations in African American Dance, winner of the CHOICE Award for Outstanding Academic Publication and the American Society for Theater Research Errol Hill Award; and Dancing Revelations: Alvin Ailey’s Embodiment of African American Culture. DeFrantz teaches in dance and African and African-American Studies at Duke University. He served as a Center dance panelist in 2013.


Acclaimed French choreographer and experimental dancer Boris Charmatz visited Philadelphia for a residency and public presentation of his performance piece for 24 dancers, Levée des conflits (Suspension of conflicts), at Drexel’s Mandell Theater, co-presented by FringeArts, in combination with a series of interpretive programs.

Collaborators & Colleagues

A former member of the Trisha Brown Dance Company, Lisa Kraus has worked extensively as a performer, choreographer, teacher, and writer locally, nationally, and abroad.

Five Pew Fellows have been awarded artist residencies in 2014, part of the ongoing partnership between The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, the Alliance of Artists Communities, and four North American artist residency programs.

Directing My Dancers/Directing Myself allowed Nichole Canuso to reevaluate her choreographic practice, mentoring under U.K.-based dancer Wendy Houstoun.

Dance ethnologist and anthropologist Toni Shapiro-Phim traces the legacy of Cambodian dancer and teacher Pen Sokhuon against a backdrop of historical and political changes in Cambodia.

Dancer Megan Bridge gives an insider’s perspective on performing Lucinda Childs’ work at the soft opening of the new FringeArts space.

Grants & Grantees

Pew Fellow Nami Yamamoto’s cut-paper installations reflect the hundreds of natural and man-made objects she consistently collects, serving as visual resources and inspirations for her practice.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Lecoq-trained theater artist Mary Tuomanen devises work using storytelling tools like acrobatics, clown, mask, mime, scenography, and spatial composition.

Grants & Grantees

As a presenting arts organization, the Painted Bride offers a wide range of work in music, dance, spoken word, and theater.

Grants & Grantees

Bo Bartlett is a painter and a 1993 Pew Fellow.

Grants & Grantees

Known for its high energy performances, Koresh Dance Company was founded in 1991 by Israeli-born choreographer Ronen Koresh.

Grants & Grantees

Preservation of the Paul Robeson House interpreted the legacy of the African American artist and Civil Rights activist.