Sarasota Contemporary Dance Finds Home in the Rosemary District



The 12th annual Dance Makers concert run from Sarasota Contemporary Dance kicked off last night in the Jane B. Cook Theatre of the FSU Performing Arts Center, bringing the multitalented dancers of SCD to the stage for the first in a series of four daily concerts running through Sunday. Performing works from internationally acclaimed choreographers from across the country and beyond, such as Millicent Johnnie, Lucy Bowen McCauley, Rosanna Tavarez and Crystal Edwards, the annual concert celebrates the company, the choreographers, the collaborators, contemporary dance itself and, this year, a new home for SCD.

“It’s been a long process,” says SCD Founder and Artistic Director Leymis Bolanos Wilmott of the road to opening her own movement center in the Rosemary District this year. Previously operating out of the New College of Florida campus, where the company also hosted many of its shows, for the past three years Wilmott has focused her energies on finding a studio home for the company. Working with New College has been a “great partnership,” she says, and SCD will remain a presence on campus, “but to have our own home is crucial for the longevity of the company.”

Not only will it give the company a firm identity and foothold all its own, but a whole host of possibilities and new amenities. Situated in the Rosemary District off Boulevard of the Arts, the space brings the company itself a newly designed and sizable studio space, including SCD’s first (and much-anticipated) set of Marley sprung floors, as well as enough room to choreograph larger productions than prior years, and even host open rehearsals.

Yet, alongside the addition of new dressing rooms and office space, the inclusion of a lobby space seems to excite Wilmott most, seen as an opportunity to engage the Rosemary community. A planned grand opening on March 11 is set to do just that, with performances, sample classes and time to hear from members of the community as to what they want from their local dance studio and movement center. “It’ll be an opportunity for an exchange of ideas,” says Wilmott.

In the meantime, there’s still time to catch SCD’s annual Dance Makers concert at the Jane B. Cook Theatre of the FSU Performing Arts Center, happening tonight and Saturday night at 7:30pm and Sunday afternoon at 2pm.

Pictured: The performers of Sarasota Contemporary Dance in Crystal Edwards' "The Toggle." Photo by Sorcha Augustine.

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