Celebrated for its vibrant athleticism, humor, theatricality, and commitment to collaboration, Dance Heginbotham (DH), led by Artistic Director John Heginbotham has established itself as one of the most adventurous and exciting new companies on the contemporary dance scene, marking its 10th anniversary in 2022.

You Look Like a Fun Guy (premiering 21/22)*

Inspired by John Cage’s interest in mycology and methods of creation, Dance Heginbotham’s You Look Like a Fun Guy is a roving performance that can move fluidly between outdoor and indoor settings and celebrates Cage’s spirit — virtuosity and risk, serious curiosity and playfulness. You Look Like a Fun Guy may occur both outdoors and indoors with audience members journeying along with the action, potentially including a guided mushroom walk/tour. You Look Like a Fun Guy will be set to music by Gyorgy Kurtag and John Cage, as well as to original music composed by Colin Jacobsen. Curious and impressionistic, You Look Like a Fun Guy is not an ode to John Cage, though he is at its heart. You Look Like a Fun Guy will happily reflect his personality and the seriousness and the playfulness of Cage’s compositions.

*Social Distanced Programming: Outdoor Performance

Dance Heginbotham Abridged*

Offering a thoroughly delightful and satisfying curated evening of duets and solos, the program is performed without intermission. Dance offerings are tailored to meet reduced running times and personnel restrictions set by the venue.

*Social Distanced Programming: Indoor and Outdoor Performance, Small Cast


Artistic Director John Heginbotham and longtime collaborator and composer Ethan Iverson will again join forces following the success of Easy Win in 2015. Heginbotham and Iverson will develop two new works as companion pieces to creating a full evening program dance and piano to engage and delight dance and jazz audiences alike. Repertory available for this program include:

Dance Sonata (Working Title) (Premiering 2021)

Running Time: TBD
Choreographer: John Heginbotham
Composer: Ethan Iverson
Performers: 7 dancers, 1 pianist

Dance Sonata (Working Title) will leverage the artists’ collaborative voice to capture the unique nature of dancers and musicians in performance as embodied by the athleticism and musicality of DH’s dancers and accompanied by Iverson’s sonata.

Easy Win (2015)

Running Time: 30 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Ethan Iverson
Lighting Design: Nicole Pearce
Costume Design: Maile Okamura
Performers: 7 dancers, 1 pianist
Featured Music: Score If Not, Then Waltz; Lily Pad; Jumps for Harriett; An Unlikely Romeo; Slow Grind; I’d Love a Rag; Movie Cue; Big Three

Easy Win is a collaboration with jazz pianist and composer Ethan Iverson. The piece is inspired by John and Ethan’s shared experiences with formal ballet class, which range from dramatic to humorous, mundane to disturbing.  While exploring the established constructs of a dance class from musicological, sociological, and personal standpoints, Easy Win dissects this ritual with equal amounts of humor and sincerity.

Easy Win premiered at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater, Vail International Dance Festival (Vail, CO) on August 4, 2015.


Following the success of Lola, commissioned by the National Symphony Orchestra and performed with the NSO and guest Joshua Bell in 2012, and Peanut, commissioned by the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra in March 2019, Dance Heginbotham seeks to partner with local orchestras to create a rich, enlivening experience that engages broad dance and music audiences. Programs can be designed to accompany full or chamber orchestras, capturing the company’s keen musicality. Contact Pentacle for instrumentation lists. Repertory available for this program include:

Lola (2017)

Running Time: 30 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Édouard Lalo
Lighting Design: Nicole Pearce
Costume Design: Maile Okamura
Performers: 7 dancers
Music: Symphonie Espagnol

Choreographed to Édouard Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnole and performed live on stage by world-renowned violinist Joshua Bell and the National Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor Michael Stern. Lola celebrates the interplay between musician and dancer, creating vibrant action and delicate moments amongst the performers.

Lola premiered in 2017 at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, celebrating the company’s 5th Anniversary.

Angels’ Share

Running Time: 21 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Ernst von Dohnányi
Lighting Design: Nicole Pearce
Costume Design: Maile Okamura
Performers: 5 dancers
Music: Serenade in C Major for String Trio, Op. 10

Ethereal and witty, Angels’ Share captures Heginbotham’s verve and musicality, inspired by the angels’ share of wine or whiskey, the portion of liquid which evaporates into the ether and a platform for the five dancers’ distinct virtuosity. As Brian Siebert wrote in the New York Times, “…it is a barefoot affair that responds felicitously to the surface and undercurrents of Ernst von Dohnanyi’s Serenade in C for String Trio. The dance is bright with witty detail, yet also shaded with loneliness. Particularly in a women’s duet, there’s a beautiful sadness that’s not easy to label. That tone, as much as the quirkiness, is coming to define what makes a Heginbotham dance distinct.”

Angels’ Share was originally created for Atlanta Ballet’s Wabi Sabi project and premiered at the Lancaster Music Festival, Lancaster, Ohio in 2014.

Scratchband (2019)

Running Time: 15 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: John Adams
Performers: 5 dancers
(Option to be performed with recorded or live music.)

Following the success of their previous collaboration in 2014, Fly By Wire, Dance Heginbotham and new music ensemble Alarm Will Sound joined together again for Common Fate, an evening length program of live music and dance works that included a commissioned score by Tyondai Braxton and presented as part of the Hopkins Center for the Arts’ SHIFT Festival. Scratchband, a work originally featured as part of Common Fate can be performed as part of a DH mixed repertory program.


Peanut (2019)

Running Time: 4 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Igor Stravinsky
Costume Designer: Maile Okamura
Performers: 1 dancer
Music: Circus Polka: For a Young Elephant

Illuminating the absurd and dynamic in Stravinsky’s “Circus Polka,” this sprightly solo evokes a big-top environment amid the score’s soaring, heavy brass.

Commissioned by the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra.

The Fandango (2016)

Running Time: 7 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Luigi Boccherini
Costume Designer: Maile Okamura
Performers: 6 dancers

Performed to the “Fandango” from Luigi Boccherini’s Guitar Quintet in D Major, scored for string quartet, classical spanish guitar and castanets.

The Fandango was co-commissioned by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and Arts Brookfield. Presented as part of the River to River Festival 2016.

Only If You Mean It (2018)

Running Time: 7 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Heitor Villa-Lobos
Performers: 2 dancers

Selections from Villa-Lobos’ compositions are played on guitar as dancers use a ballet/modern vocabulary to enact compositional gambits.

Twin (2012)

Running Time: 30 minutes
Choreography: John Heginbotham
Composer: Aphex Twin
Performers: 6 dancers
(Performed to recorded music)

“…a strong choreographic personality – a refreshing mixture of casualness and discipline, lunacy and sincerity…” – The New Yorker



24 short dances on film created during these unprecedented times.

In March 2020, Dance Heginbotham (DH) was rehearsing Dance Sonata, a brand-new work with composer Ethan Iverson set to premiere this summer 2020 at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. With that work disrupted, a compelling idea emerged when Works & Process at the Guggenheim approached Artistic Director John Heginbotham with the opportunity to create a Works & Process Artists (WPA) Virtual Commission. Using Niccolo Paganini’s 24 Caprices as an inspirational launching point, Dance Heginbotham joins forces with violinist Colin Jacobsen, “one of the most interesting figures on the classical music scene” (The Washington Post), to explore the caprices’ delightful, dark, and melancholic turns. 

Filmed in New York City over the coming year, 24 Caprices is Dance Heginbotham’s ambitious, new virtual dance project, featuring John, Colin, and a team of dancers and surprise guest artists. Each caprice is a captivating jewel, rhythmically intricate and varied in range, capturing a moment in this unprecedented time.


There are a total of 24 Caprices to be developed and are offered at three commissioning levels that vary in cast size: Ampio, Medio, and Piccolo. Running times for the films will range between 1:30 to 7 minutes in length and are not directly related to cast size. There are options to be a sole commissioner or co-commissioner

Three (3) Commissioning Options:

Ampio (large): This caprice offering features up to 9 company dancers, Colin Jacobsen on violin and a creative team that includes John Heginbotham (choreographer), Maile Okamura (videographer), and Jody Elff (sound design).

Medio (medium): This caprice includes approximately 5 dancers alongside violinist Colin Jacobsen. Creative team includes John Heginbotham (choreographer), Maile Okamuraa (videographer), and Jody Elff (sound design).

Piccolo (small): A small but mighty caprice, this offering features a special guest artist from the Dance Heginbotham family. Additional personnel to realize this caprice include: Colin Jacobsen (music),  John Heginbotham (choreographer), Amber Star Merkens (rehearsal director), Maile Okamura (videographer) and Jody Elff (sound design)



Join John Heginbotham, Colin Jacobsen, and featured performers as they share with audiences the journey of creating an original dance work in the midst of Covid-19. Audiences will gain insight into the collaborative process at the heart of 24 Caprices, as well as the challenges and inspiration uncovered while working in this new, social distanced and online platform. The evening includes a screening of 2-3 completed Caprices, as well as the world premiere of the commissioned Caprice. A Q&A session with the audience will follow. The virtual event can be shaped to meet the interests and engagement goals of the commissioner. 


  • Technology: Zoom is required or similar platform provided by presenter.

  • Moderator shall be provided by presenter. Company may provide a moderator  upon request.

  • Presenter to provide virtual stage manager to run the technology and stage manage the event. 

  • Company requests a virtual technical rehearsal approx. two weeks before the event to run through the technology and ensure a smooth run.

  • Approximately 60 minutes (40 minute multimedia presentation which includes screening of up to 3 completed Caprices as well as a discussion with featured artists. 20 minute Q&A session to follow.)


dance heginbotham movement workshops

Company offers movement classes for Dance Departments or Community Organizations in: Beginning/Intermediate/Advanced Contemporary Technique and Composition. Company also offers Limited Mobility Workshops. Classes may be tailored and adapted as needed.


  • Technology: Zoom is required or similar platform provided by presenter.

  • 25 Students Max.

  • 60 minute workshop plus 15 minute Q&A with John Heginbotham. 

>> FAQ about Dance Heginbotham’s Outreach Activities <<

Masterclasses: Beginning/Intermediate/Advanced Contemporary Technique
Led by Artistic Director John Heginbotham or company dancers, this class focuses on developing techniques for moving efficiently and expressively, with consciousness, strength, and grace. Special attention is paid to exploring and understanding the role of musicality in dancing.  Each class begins on the floor, incorporating the anatomically sound movement principles of 20th Century dance pioneers Irmgard Bartenieff and Rudolf Laban. A standing, ballet-informed center follows, and the class concludes with a series of dynamic traveling and jumping combinations. Live musical accompaniment preferred. Running time: 90 minutes. 

Choreography Workshop
Led by Artistic Director John Heginbotham, students learn to develop movement material for solo and groups, through various problem-solving activities. Participants will be asked to create dance studies focused on musical structures, narrative, physical interaction, and partnering. The class will end with time devoted to viewing and discussing the work created. Live musical accompaniment is an essential part of this class. Running time: 120 minutes.

Limited Mobility Workshop
Led by Artistic Director John Heginbotham and founding Dance for PD teacher, this is a customized dance workshop which emphasizes the creation of a gentle, focused space for dancing to occur.  A sensitivity to the specific concerns of people with limited mobility is inherent but the class is centered on the aesthetic, athletic, and expressive possibilities of dance.  Requirements:  sufficient lighting for proper visibility of the floor; chairs; piano (if live music is not available, a CD player is acceptable). Maximum Participants: 40. Preferred Length: 1.5 hours.

Q & A with Dance Heginbotham
Artistic Director John Heginbotham and Managing Director will offer a brief history of John’s career and Dance Heginbotham’s history, and will then take questions from students. Topics covered in the past include: Artistic Process, Interdisciplinary Collaboration, Dancer Health & Wellness Advice, The Life of a Dancer, Arts Management/Producing, and Current state of American Modern Dance.

Post-performance discussions available upon request. Pre-show discussions/talks also available.

  • The New York Times

  • The New Yorker

  • The New York Times

  • The New York Times

  • 05.31.2020

    Virtual: Works & Process: Dance Heginbotham moderated by Isaac Mizrahi

    Works & Process at the Guggenheim

    New York, NY

  • 07.28.2020

    Virtual: Streaming You Look Like a Fun Guy

    "Art in the Garden" Series at Brooklyn Botanic Garden

    Brooklyn, NY

  • 02.22.2021

    Virtual: 24 Caprices Watch Party!

    Hopkins Center for the Arts, Dartmouth College

    Hanover, NH

  • 04.30.2021

    Virtual: 24 Caprices Watch Party!

    Performing Arts Center @ SUNY Purchase

    Purchase, NY