AUG 17 | In-Person & Livestreamed 


Companies from Washington, D.C., Austin, Texas, and New York come together in a riveting genre-diverse evening.


The opportunity to experience tap with live music, a wide range of contemporary styles, and neoclassical ballet speaks to the diversity that Battery Dance Festival embraces.


Thank you to our independent Curatorial Panel for selecting these wonderful companies. See detailed program information below. 

Time & Location 

In-person: 7pm EDT at Robert F. Wagner Park. Click here for directions.

Online: The link for the 7pm livestream will be posted here on the day of the event. The video will be available to watch for 10 days after the premiere and will expire on Aug 27th.

Register for free for this event to receive reminders and bonus content


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Created on commission following Battery Dance’s national tour of South Africa, Observatory is named for the Cape Town neighborhood where its choreographer Theo Ndindwa resides with creative partner Tanya Arshamian. The piece has traveled worldwide on the Company’s various State Department tours.


About the Company

Battery Dance was founded in 1976 in New York City’s Financial District by choreographer Jonathan Hollander, a Fulbright Lecturer and former professional dancer. The Company has since earned critical accolades for its exquisite choreography and virtuosic dancers, while becoming a leader in social activism at home and abroad. Battery Dance developed ‘Dancing to Connect’ in 2006, an arts education program that puts the tools of choreography into the hands of young people with or without prior dance training. Since then, 300,000 students in NYC public high schools and students in 60 countries around the world have benefited from this training.



John 4:20 

A duet that interrogates the performers’ shared histories and identities – New Yorker, Jew, Black youth, male dancer. Informed by the personal dynamics of their relationship, they create a physical vocabulary personifying political rage and the reality of violence juxtaposed with the need for empathy.


About the Company

Baye & Asa is a company creating movement art projects directed by Amadi ‘Baye’ Washington & Sam ‘Asa’ Pratt. We grew up together in New York City, and that shared educational history is the mother of our work. Hip Hop & African dance languages are the foundation of our technique. The rhythms of these techniques inform the way we energetically confront contemporary dance & theatre.




Early 2021 brought the loss of choreographer Robert J. Priore’s grandfather, a loss that rocked his family and made Priore look introspectively at the marks his family has left on him and each other. “Voila Viola” explores the family’s intergenerational relationships, lineage, and rich traditions.


About the Company

Co-directed by Paul Gordon Emerson & Kathryn Pilkington, Company | E has worked on 5 continents and 30+ countries, including 6 evening-length commissions at the Kennedy Center in DC. The company performs, teaches, and collaborates with international & national artists through the US Department of State, creating programs from Israel, Spain, Poland, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, & more. Choreographer Robert J. Priore is a founding member and independent choreographer; his work has been presented in DC, NYC, Cuba, Kazakhstan, & Russia, to name a few.



Warsaw | World Premiere

A solo reflection on a city transformed by the cycle of destruction and rebirth, set to Olafur Arnalds’ composition quoting a Chopin Sonata.


About the Company

Francisco Graciano holds an MFA from Florida State University and danced with several NYC-based dance companies including the Paul Taylor Dance Company from 2004 – 2017. His choreographic practice reflects the mythology and folklore of his Mexican-American roots and focuses on the transformation of body and psychology.





An uplifting and joyous celebration of all things summer, showcasing artistry, athleticism, and accessibility. “Solstice” was created on commission at Artpark in Lewiston, NY for its Summer Solstice Celebration 2019.


About the Company

Jon Lehrer Dance Company began in 2007 and has already become a critically acclaimed nationally and internationally touring company. JLDC showcases Jon’s unique choreography and definitive style, reflecting life experience and the human condition. His extensive background in both the modern and jazz dance idioms fosters choreography that is athletic, artistic, and accessible. Striking the elusive balance between art and entertainment, the company tours extensively, bringing their trademark style and athletic ingenuity to audiences worldwide.



A Little Old, A Little New 

Tap dancer and choreographer Luke Hickey presents a percussive revue highlighting the synergy of tap dance and jazz music from the swing era to modernity, with dancers John Manzari and Elizabeth Burke and a live jazz trio.  


About the Company

Luke Hickey is a NYC-based tap dancer, choreographer, and actor, named by Dance Magazine among “25 To Watch” for 2020. Hickey is also an alumna of the North Carolina Youth Tap Ensemble and the School at Jacob’s Pillow. In 2018, Hickey made his choreographic and director debut with his work “A Little Old, A Little New” at Birdland Jazz Club in NYC and then at Jacob’s Pillow for the Inside/Out Stage Series in 2019. Hickey’s choreography is also seen in the feature film “A Bread Factory;” listed on The New Yorker’s “The Best Movies of 2018.”



The Underground 

“The Underground,” interweaves pedestrian social dancing and contemporary movement to capture the physical and emotional experience of urban nightlife and the innate human desire to find connection and intimacy.


About the Company

Rohan Bhargava was born in New Delhi, India and he relocated to New York in 2012 to receive his BFA in Dance from NYU. Featured in Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch 2021,” Rohan is the founder of Rovaco Dance Company and has showcased work in New York, Texas, Massachusetts, Vermont, and Minnesota. Rovaco Dance has been commissioned by Mare Nostrum Elements, Rhythmically Speaking, Dance Gallery Festival, and Mannes School of Music. Additionally, Rohan has been a resident artist for Dancewave, Sam Houston State University, and CUNY Dance Initiative.