MEDIA  }  Press

APRIL 1, 2015
Insightful and interesting Willamette Week article about the Portland dance scene's space struggles and Northwest Dance Project's beautiful brand new Creative Center in the heart of the city's rapidly developing east side.

MARCH 22, 2015
Fantastic audience responses to our Louder Than Words shows complete with a mid-show standing ovation after Sarah Slipper's incredible "Casual Act" - and the press loves the show as well! Oregon Arts Watch notes "The company's eight dancers were in peak form, showcasing their considerable skills in reprises of artistic director Sarah Slipper's Casual Act, which got a well-deserved standing ovation, and Lucas Crandall's Blue. But for me the most exciting work was the premiere of Yidam, by Ihsan Rustem. It's noteworthy not just because of what it delivers but also because of what it promises: Rustem has just accepted a three-year appointment as NDP's resident choreographer, and Yidam is a promise of what's to come." Willamette Week raves "jaw dropping" - "makes for a night hard to forget" - "it's hard to look away from such breathless abandon." Ambit Magazine notes "the fine-tuned skills of each dancer...the choreography confidently flexes and executes a wide range of territory." - "This is a performance I want to see again. I feel like I need to see again." - "Louder Than Words is a thrilling, beautiful production."

MARCH 15, 2015
Great show and Creative Center preview complete with an exciting annoucement from ArtsWatch who previously summed Northwest Dance Project up nicely as a "versatile, high-powered contemporary dance company"

MARCH 14, 2015
Nice review of one one of our five sold-out shows in Germany...or so we are's in German...

MARCH 1, 2015
The Portland Mercury did a nice piece about our new Creative Center, the floor-destroying great flood of 2014, and our upcoming Louder Than Words show....

DECEMBER 8, 2014
Amazing set of sold-out, standing ovation "In Good Company" shows at the stunning Vestas Building with Willamette Week noting the hour-long thematically linked show "fits right in with the environment: the atrium of the Vestas Building, formerly the Meier & Frank warehouse...In Good Company relies on a campy, winking’s hard not to smile...the show is relaxed, cheerful and warm. We already know we’re in good company with dancers like these, so it’s nice to see them let loose." AMBIT Magazine loves the show and even our audience, praising, "I am in good company. Northwest Dance Project’s audience comes off to me more friendly than the average crowd. There is something to this, the show was definitely a feel-good affair, and we’re all happy to exist in this architectural monument. The building is tremendous. Eleven vignettes are strung together with fluidity, at least one piece is choreographed by each all came together as one. The work is energetic and ripe with fanfare. Sketch comedy breaks through with Chaplinesque character drama, graceful prat falls, and neatly depicted situations. There is interactivity, especially during The Future Face of Rubber Gloves bit, earning roars of laughter from the audience. Typically, a fine arts scene holds the applause between sections, carefully observing, but after that half-way point, the gloves were off in the best way with hands clapping. Standing ovation is volunteered without hesitation."

NOVEMBER 13, 2014
Dance Magazine features LAUNCH its November 2014 issue and article on "Making Workshops Work" HERE

OCTOBER 24, 2014
In a glowing review of our "NEW NOW WOW!" show, Willamette Week raves "New Now Wow! is a name well-deserved...Yin Yue’s Between Rise and Fall sends the audience into a dark world that shows off a dynamic interplay with tight athleticism and willingness to experiment...a standout work by Czech choreographer Jirí Pokorny who is known for his use of stark lighting and involved group work, and this piece—his debut in North America—doesn’t disappoint...Pokorny’s timing of movement to music is extraordinarily thoughtful...Minh Tran’s Unexpected Turbulence starts humorous and fresh before becoming rapid and intense, especially backed by an atmospheric original score by Heather Perkins."

Oregon Arts Watch reviews the show and its three contrasting and capitaving world premieres, noting "invariably well-performed by this company’s versatile dancers...challenging movement...impressive dancing...pleasure to watch...Heather Perkins’ score is eminently danceable, and Tran keeps the dancers moving with good-humored energy...I couldn't take my eyes off (Ching Ching) Wong."

OCTOBER 21, 2014
"NEW NOW WOW!" preview from The Oregonian with special rehearsal slideshow.

AUGUST 15, 2014
We are proud and honored to announce that company dancer Viktor Usov has won a 2014 Princess Grace Award for dance! Northwest Dance Project now has THREE Princess Grace Award winners in the company: Andrea Parson (2010), Franco Nieto (2012) and now Viktor Usov (2014).
Read Willamette Week's post about the award and the company's successes.

JUNE 7, 2014
"Summer Spendors" is a smash! Oregon Arts Watch's Bob Hicks raves "...this is one of the most appealing dance programs I’ve seen in months...virtuoso work by the company’s 10 astonishingly tight ensemble. What’s special is that that they work so well together and yet also project such strikingly individual personalities...this group nails it." Willamette Week's Aaron Spencer agrees, saying, "The annual summer show from Northwest Dance Project, Portland’s standout contemporary chamber company, is a sea of airy turns and dreamlike reflection. The four pieces, two of them world premieres, have notable similarities in style and approach, even though they were created by four different choreographers. If you can't catch the entire show, know that the Summer Splendors program is unique among Portland dance shows in that you can watch bits of it through the studio's open windows. The sun is still out, and plenty of passersby on North Mississippi Avenue do. Northwest Dance Project all but encourages it." Horizon Times notes "It is a beautiful space, the evening light gently illuminating through the windows...An existential exploration of the mind, the body and where the two connect. Where they then connect with another body...intensity shifts and we watch as the dancers find strange ways to develop and evoke connection with each other...a moving meditation on support...These works seem to all have a fluid connection...The strength and flexibility of the dancers,  along with the personality that is presented through the movements, and the way this translates into the interactions between dancers were the highlights of the night."

APRIL 5, 2014
Great reviews for our "Director's Choice" - 10th Anniversary shows! Portland Monthly raves the "contemporary powerhouse celebrates 10 years of making dance their way with with a quartet of intense, beautiful, athletic dances...The evening ping-ponged from full company onslaughts to intimate duets, but the through line was strong, athletic movement. Parson is a gamine powderkeg—her small form cutting through movements with knife-edged grace one second, melting against and seemingly into her partner the next. I suspect she’d be captivating to watch even if she was just eating Rice Krispies at her kitchen table; she’s that interesting...Dance is hard; it’s a delight to watch it performed with such energy and abandon." Willamette Week glows " got your money's worth with nearly two hours of serious dance...the dancers were clearly well-practiced." Oregon Arts Watch is wowed by our decade milestone and the show that is "fluid-moving and full of surprises!...a victory lap, with each of the evening’s four pieces culminating in an extended curtain call."


APRIL 2, 2014
It is officially "Northwest Dance Project Day"! Portland's Mayor, Charlie Hales, and the entire City Council (including our friend and fan Nick Fish adding some bonus props and introducing the company members) declared it so and issued our Mayoral Proclamation this morning (which will be framed and proudly displayed). See the video of the proceedings HERE and celebrate accordingly!

MAR 2014

Canadian Tour Press Previews & Reviews

Canada can't wait to experience Northwest Dance Project!
The Georgia Straight raves "Northwest Dance Project finally makes its Canadian debut at the Cultch this month...(Sarah) Slipper has built a solid company of dancers who have a grounding in ballet technique but are open to being pushed...(Northwest Dance Project) has lived up to its promise, commissioning an almost unbelievable 160 new works over the past decade and attracting some of the hottest established and emerging choreographers from North America and Europe on its solid reputation.
WE Vancouver put a show blurb on the cover and writes "...a force in the American dance scene...stunning of America’s hottest dance companies. Expect goosebumps, and a memorable homecoming."
The Vancouver Sun glows "Portland-based Northwest Dance Project — widely considered among the most innovative dance troupes in the U.S., having represented the country at the Cultural Olympiad in London — finally makes its Canadian debut."
The Gulf Islands Driftwood notes Northwest Dance Project is "one of the most widely praised contemporary dance companies on the American West Coast."
Calgary Herald loves our Banff performance, considering it "it was a night to remember filled with remarkable athleticism from some of the best dancers you will ever see in modern choreographed works" and then raves in a full, separate review devoted to Danielle Agami's piece, "This Time Tomorrow" HERE

FEB 15, 2014
Northwest Dance Project is again feautured on a front page article from our great community newspaper, The Hollywood Star!

DEC 11, 2013
Willamette Week and The Portland Mercury LOVE our "In Good Company" show, noting "a convivial tone for the dance company's annual holiday show. The pieces here are choreographed by NWDP’s dancers, and if these works are any indication, they’re a real fun-loving satisfies and entertains with a lot of personality" and simply "it is awesome...cozy and spirited...go on and get your tickets."

OCT 28, 2013
Spot-on review of our NEW NOW WOW! show by Portland Monthly that states "triple-world-premiere season opener showed the rewards experimentation can bring...Northwest Dance Project does not hold back...the company reminded us that experimenting and pushing boundaries results in the most memorable of art." Read aditional reviews by Willamette Week and Oregon Arts Watch.

OCT 24, 2013
Great NEW NOW WOW! previews in The Oregonian and Willamette Week

SEP 12, 2013
Canada can't wait to see Northwest Dance Project! In their preview of the Vancouver BC (Sarah's hometown - go Oh Canada!) stop of our March 2014 Western Canada Tour, The Georgia Straight said "must-see show... Why Portland, Oregon’s hottest dance export has never visited here—let alone Canada—is beyond us. Suffice it to say it’s about time." Indeed!

AUG 5, 2013
Dance International Magazine has posted their glowing review of our Spring Performances shows, noting "muscular human interaction with shifting group dynamics", and "impressive of the reasons Northwest Dance Project has succeeded is its willingness to take risks." Read the full review HERE.

JUN 9, 2013
Great review of our Summer Splendors show by The Oregonian that notes "multiple standing ovations," that the performance "gave reason to celebrate," "play(s) to the company's technical strengths," "Slipper's twisting lifts are stunners" "the frisson between Parson and Nieto reveals they can act as well as dance" and "The studied elegance of Carla Mann's 2010 "Illumine..."

APR 25, 2013
Fabulous U-T San Diego preview of our two shows in the charming and historic city of Temecula, California, with lots of insights from Artistic Director, Sarah Slipper.

MAR 30, 2013
SO many awesome reviews of our Spring Performances shows!
- The Oregonian raves with phrases like "troupe of nine skilled dancers", "precise execution of fast-paced choreography", "mesmerizing solos" and "an essential part of the city's arts scene."
- Oregon Arts Watch says "Two new dances and a revival create a sleek new show...Chi features twists and flips that lead to what seem like landings but instead become springboards to a new series of movements, which lead to another landing/springboard, and another, and another, like electrical currents sizzling through switches that can’t turn the energy off... Sarah Slipper is an innately dramatic dancemaker, and her new piece, Casual Act, is an intense and beguiling abstraction from Harold Pinter’s play “Betrayal"...Patrick Delcroix's third work for the company, Drifting Thoughts, has a bit of a gone-native, science-fiction feel to it, like an eqinoxial revel interrupted here and there by a brilliant Bikini Atoll flash of destruction."
- Portland Monthly Magazine notes the company's "expert technique and strong sense of groundedness", that "Sarah Slipper’s Oxford theater background shined through in her world premiere Casual almost forgot the dancers weren’t expressing themselves with language, as their movements so clearly and beautifully relay the drama of the story....Audience members hooted and hollered...joining in on the fun of (Patrick) Delcroix's fast-paced athletic choreography. All in all, it was a lovely show."
- The Portland Mercury says "Not surprisingly, Northwest Dance Project impresses with their talent...steamy and athletic...high drama and cinematic...strong focus on the dancers...hoots and hollers from the appropriately celebratory note for both the season and such an inspiring company."

MAR 22, 2013
Great Spring Performances preview by The Oregonian that says "there's reason for high expectations" and that the show is "a sure bet." So true...

FEB 22, 2013
Portland Monthly Magazine
names Spring Performances one of "the season's 25 most exciting shows"

OCT 8, 2012
Portland Monthly Magazine
confirms that Northwest Dance Project is "world-class" and that our NEW NOW WOW! show noting "the dancing was uniformly excellent" and that "The performance confirmed that Northwest Dance Project seems to have discovered its soul mate in London choreographer Ihsan Rustem."

OCT 5, 2012
Portland Stage Reviews
loves NEW NOW WOW!, noting the "jaw dropping performance", that Northwest Dance Project "dancers are real, passionate, dedicated, and really freakin’ awesome! ... will blow your mind with their diversity, their passion, their new creations and their technical abilities." and that the show "really did knock my socks off."

OCT 5, 2012
Bob Hicks on Oregon Arts Watch has his socks knocked off by NEW NOW WOW! reviewing "Ihsan Rustem's Mother Tongue was the clear highlight, and it continues the mutual success that choreographer and company have shared...a model of contemporary choreography – a piece very much of its own time but also fiercely focused and sure of itself." "(Alex) Soares, who is from Sao Paulo, Brazil, reaches ambitiously toward total theater with Trace in Loss."

OCT 1, 2012
Great article in Just Out about Franco Nieto, his journey to his princess Grace Award and Northwest Dance Project that notes "Franco Nieto’s life sounds a bit like the premise for a novel or movie. This award, the second for Northwest Dance Project (ensemble member Andrea Parsons won in 2010), is a coup for a small company."


SEP 27, 2012
The Oregonian
previews NEW NOW WOW! and cover's Franco Nieto's recent Princess Grace Award saying "Northwest Dance Project may soon need another cap to accommodate all its feathers."

SEP 12, 2012
Great feature on Franco Nieto, Princess Grace Award and our London performances in The Columbian


AUG 7, 2012
We can FINALLY announce that Northwest Dancer Project dancer Franco Nieto has won a 2012 Princess Grace Award! Given to only six dancers in the country each year (Andrea Parson is a 2010 winner), this award is incredibly presigious and a tremendous honor. Bravo, Franco! PRESS RELEASE


JUL 10, 2012
Fantastic review of our Sadler's Wells "Sampled" performances (part of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad) HERE that states "The next work was my favourite and that of many in the audience, given the stomping and cheering standing ovation at the end...It was a great end to the first half."


JUN 17, 2012
Great "Summer Splendors" review from The Portland Mercury that states "Summer Splendors packs a tight space with a lot of spunk and four premieres. If you managed to snag tickets, you won't be disappointed! It's a bright showcase of talent."


MAY 14, 2012
In a preview for our Summer Splendors show, Oregon Public Broadcasting just dubbed us " of the most dynamic dance troupes in the country." AGREED!

MAR 10, 2012
Fantastic review of our Spring Premieres show from Portland Satge Reviews, which notes "This is dance theater with a company at the height of its ability to communicate emotions and images, yes, with their expertly trained motions through light and sound, but also from every fiber of their being, inside and out, clearer than any words that could be uttered. Go and be touched by a true spectacle." Read it all HERE.


NOV 12, 2011
Our piece from Ihsan Rustem, State of Matter, has won the 2011 Sadler's Wells Global Dance Contest, beating out nearly 200 other submissions! As the winner, the company will travel to London in late June of 2012 to perform the piece and the show is going to be included in the Olympics Arts Festival! Read The Oregonian's story on this honor.


OCT 16, 2011
Incredible reviews of our NEW NOW WOW! show keep coming! The Oregonian notes "Each of the evening's three world premieres was greeted with enthusiastic applause, and for good reason: The works were absorbing, approachable, immersed in the stylistic mindset of contemporary international dance, and performed with joy and sharply honed skill. Artistic director Sarah Slipper's dancers just keep getting better -- sharper, more elastic, more self-assured."
Willamette Week says "Northwest Dance Project can hold its own on a bigger stage...the dancers bring sound technical and artistic abilities to each new style they tackle."


JUN 15, 2011
Portland's Mayor Sam Adams proclaims Day of Recognition for Northwest Dance Project!


JUN 13, 2011
Read The Oregonian's glowing review of the show that notes "Summer Splendors" showcases the vitality and flexibility of artistic director Sarah Slipper's 10-dancer troupe, which performed a refreshingly varied and well-balanced suite." "Northwest Dance Project is on a high." "high-energy program" ... "The company is strong across the board, with an appealing blend of technique and personality, and the men especially are solid." HERE


FEB 10, 2011


That's company dancer Andrea Parson on the cover of the February issue of Dance Spirit Magazine.

Check out her cover story HERE and the feature on the company HERE!





FEB 1, 2011

Artistic Director Sarah Slipper shares her thoughts concerning dancer video submissions and auditions in this month's Dance Magazine.


DEC 18, 2010

Read Willamette Week's review of our "Cool Yule" shows HERE.


AUG 2, 2010

CONGRATULATIONS to company member Andrea Parson on winning a 2010 Princess Grace Award!!! Read the press release HERE.


JUN 21, 2010

Great Oregonian review from Catherine Thomas of our Summer Splendors show HERE.


JUN 8, 2010

KBOO's Dmae Roberts did a great interview with Sarah Slipper and James Canfield today about their pieces for our Summer Splendors shows and the other happenings at the Northwest Dance Project. Listen HERE.


JUN 1, 2010

CONGRATULATIONS to company dancer Andrea Parson who is the subject of a great, full-page "On the Rise" feature in the June 2010 issue of Dance Magazine! Read the article HERE.


APR 11, 2010

Interesting article in today's Sunday Oregonian featuring the Northwest Dance Project and other great North Mississippi Avenue businesses HERE


MAR 15, 2010

Great review of our Spring Performances show in The Oregonian HERE


MAR 8, 2010

Great article about company dancer Franco Nieto and our Spring Performances in The Columbian HERE


NOV 22, 2009

A preview of the company's residency and performance in Wickenburg, Arizona HERE.


OCT 18, 2009

Oregonian review of our Fall Premieres show HERE.


OCT 15, 2009

Great preview of our Fall Premieres show on Portland arts blog Art Scatter HERE.


AUG 20, 2009

Oregonian review of our Summer Premieres show HERE.


JUL 17, 2009

Another great article on the Northwest Dance Project in today's Oregonian HERE.


JUL 16, 2009

Fantastic article on the Northwest Dance Project in today's Portland Tribune HERE.


APR 27, 2009

Great Pretty Creatives feature in May issue of Dance Magazine HERE.


APR 16, 2009

We have announced the winners of our new Pretty Creatives choreographic project! Read the press release HERE.


APR 12, 2009

Northwest Dance Project featured in Spring issue of Dance International Magazine!


DEC 4, 2008

We are THRILLED and PROUD to announce that we received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts!
The funds will be used to support the creation and premiere of three new works in 2009, including creations from Portland favorites James Canfield and Sarah Slipper, Northwest Dance Project's Artistic Director.
Northwest Dance Project was one of only two dance companies in the state of Oregon to receive this national funding and prestigious recognition.


AUG 2008

Review of our 2008 Showing By Dance Makers performances in The Oregonian HERE and in the Portland Tribune HERE.

Preview of our 2008 Showing By Dance Makers program in The Oregonian HERE and in the Portland Tribune HERE.

JUL 2008

The Portland Tribune ran a really nice article about the company and our recent The PC at PCPA performance HERE.
Just Out recently ran a great overview of our summer performances HERE.
Portland's free weekly, Willamette Week, came to the studio while we were gearing up for our The PC at PCPA show. Read about it HERE.
The Oregonian preview of our The PC at PCPA show HERE.

This project is incredibly important and valuable, and Portland should be proud that it is happening here.
- Donald McKayle, dance legend, Northwest Dance Project Guest Artist

This project is vital and should serve as a role model.
- John Alleyne, Artistic Director of Ballet British Columbia, Northwest Dance Project Guest Artist

The Northwest Dance Project is a great opportunity to see and work with developing dancers. It's the rare opportunity to see potential company members in a working environment. I'm able to get to know them as people and artists and evaluate their work in a much more meaningful way as opposed to the superficial view I would receive in an hour and a half audition.
- Paul Vasterling, Artistic Director of Nashville Ballet, Northwest Dance Project Guest Artist

The Northwest Dance Project's emphasis on creativity and spirited invention provides an invaluable contribution to the dance world - identifying the next generation of dancers and choreographers.
- Septime Webre, Artistic Director of Washington Ballet, Northwest Dance Project Guest Artist

Now in its second year, the Northwest Dance Project, the brainchild of Portland choreographer Sarah Slipper, is more than a technical training ground for these elite, pre-professional dancers. It's also a springboard to careers, a chance to be mentored in a spectrum of styles and aesthetics and a taste of what being in a professional company is all about. Expect the unexpected, says lauded New York choreographer Thaddeus Davis moments before exhorting his classically trained dancers to feel the push, the weight and meat of their backs and necks: "Do has to have the effort. It has to be for real." Gioconda Barbuto, putting the finishing touches on a neoclassical dance that alternates between sass and an extreme, insectlike articulation of joints, concurs. "It's very free. This project has allowed me to explore, and that's very exciting. And it gives me the chance to take the time, to give something to the dancers. That's important." In another studio, Ronen Koresh is putting 13 dancers through the paces of his highly-stylized twist on the tango, playing with laxity and tension in a dance he calls very sarcastic ballroom. "It's only the second season, and the level of professionalism is amazing," Koresh says. "The dancers are phenomenal, but it's not just the art itself. Everything in this project is at such a high level. The creative part, I can set a piece I've done before, or I can play with new stuff. I can tackle the dancers' ability. Each choreographer has their own language. One of the reasons I came here is because of the roster of names involved. I feel privileged to do this."
- The Oregonian (Arts and Entertainment, 2005)

For the second year, the Northwest Dance Project brings together the wisdom of experience and the exuberance of youth. Not only does the project give dancers the chance to study under choreographers from a range of backgrounds, but it also provides an important opportunity for making connections. It's a dream arrangement for the choreographers, too. They have access to a talented pool of dancers who are willing to try anything. And since the project places no expectations on the choreographers, they have the freedom to be truly creative. Between a slew of gifted choreographers, vibrant organizations and receptive audiences, Portland is becoming known across the nation as a dance community. So it seems fitting that the Rose City is home to what (Sarah) Slipper calls a "unique, extraordinary project."
- Just Out (2005)

The happy result is threefold: choreographers get to try out new material, many of the dancers get professional contracts, and Portland gets to see the culmination of their efforts in the final public show.
- Portland Monthly (2005)

When 24 young professional dancers from across the United States take the stage Friday night in the only public performance of the new Northwest Dance Project, they'll be performing work created by such top-line choreographers as Donald Byrd, Alonzo King and Moses Pendleton. Performance, says Sarah Slipper, isn't the real story at the three-week dance project. It's about learning and making the vital connections that are the lifeblood of the dancing life. Slipper and Steve Gonzales are co-directors of the dance project, an ambitious undertaking that Slipper hopes will grow to rival such prestigious festivals as Jacob's Pillow and the American Dance Festival. The response from dancers was overwhelming. "What I didn't expect was that we had principal dancers and soloists from major ballet companies requesting auditions, because of the choreographers we were bringing in," Slipper says. "But our initial priority was the age limit. It's an age where they are fully ready to risk. They'll land on their head if you ask them to. They've started getting technique, they're starting to get mature, but they have no fear. And what extraordinary performances you can get!" An audition last week for the project's debut performance took on the dizzying velocity of a speed-dating marathon. Blasting through choreography they'd been taught just moments before, the dancers sliced through a succession of four distinctly different movement styles: Mary Oslund's clean diagonals and gravity-weighted steps; Shawn Hounsell's extreme spinal twists and swift recoils; Robertson's flick-knife feet and martial arts lunges; Gerard Theoret's bodily earthquakes and full-throated shouts. "The choreographers are raving," Slipper said after the last of the casting picks had been made. "The directors get to see someone move, and that's the best way to audition dancers. I want the showing to be a platform for a choreographer who would like to do a completed piece, or just to show the audience, 'Look at this extraordinary dancer move in my work.' I really don't know what to expect." Then again, she adds, "We've already had three contracts offered in the first week."
- The Oregonian (Arts and Entertainment, 2004)

Organized by Sarah Slipper, the Project serves to help younger dancers (ages 16-25) in transition between student and professional careers. The first of a continuing summer workshop, the Project drew local, national and international choreographers and dancers. The success of the Project is measured less by this final performance and more by the fact that several of the dancers have been offered company positions based on their work during this project.
- Willamette Week (Pick, 2004)

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