About the Company

Detroit Dance Collective is a professional contemporary dance company dedicated to creating powerful choreography and offering inclusive community programs that heighten human expression within and across cultures. DDC’s legacy and life-affirming work voices the personal thoughts and feelings of our artists and our community and will always make its collective voice heard with respect, love and compassion.

Our Mission

Detroit Dance Collective believes in the expressive power of dance as a transformative force that reflects significant social issues and human expression. Through our performances and educational programs, we explore the intellectual, emotional, and physical dimensions of dance to create Art that Matters. 

Our Vision

Detroit Dance Collective’s vision is to create and perform dances that express all that makes us human.  We aim to leave a lasting impact on both our audiences and the broader community to ignite conversations, foster understanding, and inspire positive change through the profound artistry of dance.

Our History

BEGINNINGS: More than 40 years ago, four women, Sue Ellen Dar, Paula Kramer, Barbara Selinger and Anita Surma, loved working and dancing together. We were all graduates of Wayne State University where we earned degrees in Dance and Dance Education. Because we admired each other’s choreography, and wanted to continue our work together, we formed Detroit Dance Collective in 1980. Over the years we performed and taught in numerous schools and communities and produced concerts in theaters, schools, museums, galleries and alternative spaces throughout Michigan and beyond. The company specializes in designing imaginative dance/arts projects that address the needs of specific communities. In the early days we were privileged to presented over 60 school performances and teach classes in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in just one month. What an amazing experience. People welcomed us with open arms! Bringing communities together to share the arts is a vital element of the human condition. 

REPERTORY: Under the artistic direction of Barbara Selinger, DDC has produced powerful choreography and often collaborated with artist of other disciplines including visual artists, poets, photographers, and musicians. DDC’s dancers are intelligent artists and movers who are dedicated to the process by creating movement gestures, phrases and written text based on the choreographic intent. DDC’s productions are well known for including video projections that are designed to transform the stage into an unexpected, extraordinary environment in which the dancers are embed. The stage is richly charged with light, texture and color focusing on blending dance and metaphor. We are devoted to creating works that touch the senses, express emotions through pure physicality, and produce visually striking images that embrace and inspire audiences of all ages. As artists, the company continues to explore, discover, trust their instincts and the creative process.  We embrace the adventure to uncover new alternatives, learn to reimagine and transcend, travel down unknown pathways, and always strive to learn. 

EDUCATION: DDC is devoted to teaching classes and workshops that embrace the elements of the human condition. Based on the Humphrey-Limón tradition, every class emphasizes the importance of using the body as an expressive instrument. Our company teachers aim to develop dancers’ technical and performance skills to achieve total body connectivity. 

Teaching and moving with students of all abilities is always a joy! Placing the learner central to the experience and diligently assisting each to discover their technical and creative potential is important to all educational studies. Guided by these teaching values, DDC’s goal is to engage and encourage everyone to create visual records of their thoughts and feelings through dance, music and literature.

Detroit Dance Collective

1980 - 2024

Detroit Dance Collective is funded in part by the Michigan Arts and Cultural Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.

DDCdances is a 501(C)3 non-profit charitable organization. Contributions to DDCdances are 100% tax-deductible (License #MICS 10590) to the extent provided by law.

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DDCdances | P.O. Box 3012 | Farmington Hills, Michigan 48333 | 810-444-4553

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