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About

Who Are We?

The Choreographic Institute works to support, develop, and expand dance and choreographic practices. Based in Tel Aviv-Yafo, the Institute provides opportunities for artistic research, development, and sustainability for local professional dance artists and the broader field of dance. 


The Institute serves as a space for expanding notions of contemporary dance and choreography through residencies, professional classes and workshops, choreographic development and artist resource programs, peer mentorship, international exchanges, and discursive formats. 

 

The first of its kind in Israel, the Institute values process and experimentation, inviting dance artists to deepen their artistic practices, facilitating engagement with the public, and exploring how choreographic thinking-making-envisioning may transform the place(s) we live. Placing the dance artist at the center of the work, the Institute creates contextualized, discursive and critical spaces for artists in various stages, roles, and incarnations of their careers.
 

The Choreographic Institute harnesses vast institutional knowledge, resources, and networks, and engages in constant dialogue with active dance professionals locally and internationally in order to support dozens of dance artists each year. The Institute is a flexible structure, working in a variety of institutional and independent dance spaces, and strives to establish a new long-term home for dancers and dance makers.


Context

The Choreographic Institute was established to respond to the needs of local professional dancers and dance-makers who operate in a highly saturated and competitive field that lacks adequate platforms for development and advancement.
 

Unlike other flourishing dance scenes that provide a growing and diverse landscape of institutional opportunities and professional milestones, Israel has few meaningful opportunities for dance and choreographic development, mentorship, and skills-building.

Drawing inspiration from national choreography centers and dance-research institutions around the world, The Choreographic Institute brings a new model for creative and professional development to Israel, one committed to building a healthy, thriving dance ecosystem. 



Background
 

The Choreographic Institute was founded by Sarah Holcman, Nitsan Margaliot, and Tamar Sonn who came together around their shared values and vision for the field, commitment to empowering and advocating for dance artists, and belief in the change-making potential of dance when done in a non-hierarchical environment. 


For almost two decades, Sarah Holcman has worked with and for dance artists. Her body of work includes being active as a dancer/performer/collaborator as well as an artistic director, curator, stage/tour manager, writer, international connection-maker, organizer, producer, advocate, and dance mom to many. She has a deep passion and expansive track record for supporting choreographers, developing and initiating supportive frameworks and opportunities for dance artists, and offering artistic and strategic thinking around how to best serve and support the dance community.
 

Tamar Sonn is a professional dancer, assistant in creative processes and initiator. Nitsan Margaliot is a professional dancer, choreographer, curator and initiator. In 2020, Tamar Sonn and Nitsan Margaliot founded The Platform for Independent Dancers in Israel, an organization creating sustainable conditions for local freelance dancers. Gathering input from hundreds of local dancers, they developed communal frameworks for professional growth and allyship across the field. The Platform initiated the PRO MORNINGS classes for professional dancers at Suzanne Dellal Centre as well as The Mentorship Program of the Tel Aviv Municipality and Perspectives From The Field, a residency for developing dance practices. 

Together, Sarah, Nitsan, and Tamar are working to create new platforms, programs, and collaborations in order to have meaningful and long-lasting impact on the local dance community.

The Team

Sarah Holcman

Founder, Artistic & Executive Director

Sarah Holcman is a dance artist, arts manager, and independent curator and producer in contemporary dance. She is originally from the USA, having spent many years in New York City working with prestigious dance institutions and artists. Since 2014, Sarah has been based in Tel Aviv-Yafo.
For almost 20 years, Sarah has worked with numerous contemporary dance institutions, most notably: the Hollins University/American Dance Festival Masters of Fine Arts program, under the direction of Donna Faye Burchfield; Movement Research and the 92nd St Y (NYC); and Gibney (NYC) where she served as the Center's Programs Manager, curating and managing a robust roster of programs including residencies, works-in-progress and feedback series, and artist resource programs. 

From 2015-2022, Sarah served as the Director of Programs and International Relations at the Suzanne Dellal Centre for Dance in Tel Aviv where she oversaw the curation of international dance companies and artists; directed International Exposure, the Centre’s annual platform for contemporary dance in Israel; and initiated a series of choreographic development programs including the Centre’s first residencies. 

As a freelance arts manager, Sarah has worked with John Jasperse, Jennifer Monson, and Sarah Michelson, among others. As a dancer and creative collaborator, Sarah has performed with many choreographers in New York and internationally, most notably with Larissa Velez-Jackson (New York) and Deborah Hazler (Vienna).
Sarah currently directs freelance dance projects in Israel and abroad and serves as artistic advisor to Palestinian choreographer Sahar Damoni. 
Sarah holds a BFA in Dance/Choreography from Arizona State University, USA.

Nitsan Margaliot

Founder, Co-Artistic Director

Nitsan Margaliot is a choreographer, dancer, and curator entangled with familial and queer archives, fabulation, and vulnerable encounters.
He has danced with the Batsheva Ensemble and Vertigo Dance Company. Since moving to Berlin in 2014, he has worked with Laurent Chetouane, Maud Le Pladec, Kat Valastur, Aoife McAtamney, Moritz Majce, Benjamin Bertrand, Anne Collod, Milla Koistinen and Solistenensemble Kaleidoskop. His choreographic works have been presented at the14th Street Y, NYC; Vitlycke Centre for Performing Arts, Sweden; Israel Festival; Radialsystem; English Theatre, Berlin; Soundance Festival - Dock11; PATHOS, Munich; Kunstquartier Bethanien; Adama Festival; LAB Frankfurt; Gvanim B’mahol Festival at Suzanne Dellal Centre; SomoS Arts Berlin; Barnes Crossing Cologne; Kelim Choreography Center; and Jewish Filmdays Frankfurt.

Nitsan holds an MFA from The University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where he evolved his research around subjective relation to time through writings and installations.

In 2020 he initiated TouchingMargins.com, an alter-archive, with Sasha Portyannikova; and The Platform for Independent Dancers in Israel, an organization creating sustainable conditions for freelance dancers, with Tamar Sonn. In 2022 he was co-curator of the exhibition and performance series Movement Research ACROSS at Galerie Wedding. He is a 2023 research resident at tanzhaus nrw and Künstlerhaus Mousonturm.

Tamar Sonn

Founder, Co-Artistic Director of
Dancer Programs

Tamar Sonn is a dance artist working between Israel and Berlin. She is a graduate of the Jerusalem Academy for Music and Dance High School and was recognized as an outstanding dancer during her service with the Israel Defense Forces. In 2007 she was a recipient of a Sharett Scholarship from the America Israel Cultural Foundation.

In 2010, Tamar took part in “The Project," a contemporary repertoire dance company of the Israel Opera and Suzanne Dellal Centre, where she performed works by Emanuel Gat, Jacopo Godani, William Forsythe, and Idan Sharabi. She has worked with choreographers such as Sharon Vazanna, Noa Zuk and Ohad Fishof, Annabelle Dvir, Odelya Kuperberg, Idan Cohen, and Yoni Soutchy. Since 2019 she has collaborated with the choreographer Kat Válastur (Berlin) in the creations Arcana Swarm, Stellar Fauna, theFarNear, and Diana, Even, and she served as a choreographer assistant for the work Eye,Lash!.

In 2020 Tamar worked with Nitsan Margaliot to initiate The Platform for Independent Dancers in Israel.

Board of Directors

Head of the Board of Directors: Neta Pulvermacher
Board Members: Dr. Yael (Yali) Nativ, Dalia Chaimsky, Lisa Rozova, Juliana May

Audit Committee: Zohar Eshel Acco, Daniel Saat

Site Photos: Sarah Holcman by Daniel Saat; Nistan Margaliot by Hadas Tapuchi; Tamar Sonn by Tomer Halperin; Andrea Martini by Liron Weissman; Annabelle Dvir by Montpellier Danse; Olivia Court Mesa by Asya Skorik; Roni Chadash by Nadav Yahalomi; Talia Beck by Gadi Dagon. Logo by Dana and Dan Design.

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