The editor and writers at See Chicago Dance (SCD) strive to present fair and equitable coverage of Chicago’s multifaceted dance community. To be eligible for a review or preview, the only requirement is listing your event on the SCD calendar, a free service. Artists needn't be SCD members, purchase advertisements or use SCD services to be covered by our critics. We start to make decisions about our editorial calendar on the 10th of each month for the month upcoming, so it highly recommended you post your events at least 4-6 weeks ahead. Editorial assignments are made at the discretion of the editor and according to budgetary restrictions. Coverage is not guaranteed.
Features, previews and reviews on our site provide commentary on companies and venues of various disciplines, organizational sizes, neighborhoods and cultural backgrounds. The editor shall ensure balance and fairness in assignments as well as the tone and quality of publicized materials. Our main goal is educating, informing and inspiring our readers.
See Chicago Dance adheres to journalistic standards of practice similar to those of any other news outlet. The editor and writers function independently from SCD organizational programs, maintaining curatorial and financial separation from executive staff and the board of directors.
Meet our writers:
Editor and senior writer Lauren Warnecke is a freelance dance writer and culture critic. In addition to See Chicago Dance, she contributes to the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Magazine, Milwaukee Magazine, St. Louis Magazine, Dance Magazine and Pointe. Previously, Lauren contributed to the Windy City Times, Dance Advantage and 4dancers. Pending publications include writings for Agenda and the University of Akron Press. From 2017-18, Lauren completed a low-residency dance writing lab at the National Center for Choreography in Akron, Ohio. In 2018 and '19 she was a writer-in-residence for the Bates Dance Festival in Lewiston, Maine. In 2018, Lauren co-facilitated a critical writing intensive for the JOMBA! Contemporary Dance Experience in Durban, South Africa, which led to the development of the inaugural See Chicago Dance Critical Writing Fellowship in 2020, a collaboration between writers from South Africa, the U.S. and the United Kingdom. In addition to writing, Lauren has more than 15 years of experience as a non-profit arts administrator, freelance production manager and curator. Holding degrees in dance and kinesiology, she has worked in higher education for over a decade and teaches coursework in dance history, dance kinesiology and exercise physiology. Lauren is interested in the intersection of sports performance models applied to dance, aesthetic competence and cultural criticism. She has presented this work at the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science, the National Dance Education Organization and the Midwest Sport and Exercise Psychology Symposium.
Senior writer and editor emerita Lynn Shapiro is a freelance writer and visual artist. Her reviews and feature stories have appeared in Dance Magazine, Dance Teacher Magazine, DanceTabs and Dance International. Her plays have been produced by CBS TV, as well as by regional theatre companies throughout the U.S. and Canada. Lynn has taught Fiction Writing at Columbia College, Movement for Actors at The Theatre School, DePaul University, and Dance at Barat College and The Latin School of Chicago. She has been an Artist In Residence with the Illinois Arts Council and The Chicago Board of Jewish Education. She has directed and choreographed for Piven Theatre Workshop, Famous Door Theatre, Goodman Children's Theatre, Light Opera Works, Opera Midwest, and Metropolis Performing Arts Center. She has also written and directed productions for corporate training through theater. In New York City where she danced professionally, Lynn attended The Martha Graham School and Juilliard. She received a BA in English Literature from the University of Illinois, and an MFA/MA in Fiction Writing and The Teaching of Creative Writing from Columbia College. Her fiction and poetry have been published in Midstream Magazine, The Jewish Women's Literary Annual, The Chicago Jewish News, East On Central, Realize Magazine, and Pioneer Press. Lynn was the editor of See Chicago Dance from 2013-2018.
Editor-at-large Vicki Crain has been involved in dance as a student, performer, teacher and dance writer for over 30 years. She holds a BA in English from University of Illinois (Springfield) and has interviewed notable artists such as Lar Lubovitch, Ann Reinking, Twyla Tharp and Christopher Wheeldon. She is the founder of Rogue Ballerina, a Chicago-based dance blog (est. 2009), published her first children’s book The Furry Princess in 2018, and is launching a podcast in late 2020. Her writing has been seen in Dance Magazine, Time Out Chicago, Windy City Times and CS Magazine among other publications. She is the former marketing manager for The Joffrey Ballet (2013-2020). Vicki was the editor of See Chicago Dance from 2012-2013.
Staff writer Jordan Kunkel is a Chicago-based dance artist, journalist and choreographer who investigates issues of social justice through her work. She received her B.A. in Dance and Journalism from Loyola University Chicago in 2018. As a working professional, she combines her passions for dance, writing and multimedia to advocate for and promote the arts.
For the past 15 years, freelance critic D’onminique Boyd has contributed to the field of dance in varying roles as a performer, educator, healer, community member and arts administrator. Most notably, she danced professionally with Kotchegna Ivory Coast Company, the Howard University Marching Band, studied with the Urban Bush Women in the Summer Leadership Institute, appeared in the movie Step Up and worked as a dance facilitator at El Puente Academy of Peace and Justice. In 2016, she was awarded the Legacy Continues award by the Katherine Dunham Museum for her commitment to sharing the importance of Miss Dunham’s legacy. She has worked internationally studying traditional South African dances as a Baldwin Artist in Residence and locally with students on the Autism Spectrum as an Adaptive Dance Assistant at Lou Conte Dance Studio in Chicago. Currently, D’onminique lives on Chicago’s South Side where she works with a creative community of teachers, artists, families and students helping to build the next generation of artists, creative thinkers and arts advocates as the Assistant Director of Education and Family Programs at the Logan Center for the Arts. She continues to find inspiration in humanity as a new mom, while examining the politics of black movement in the streets, in nature, at leisure, in quiet and on the stage. She is honored to share her voice and further her contribution to the field of dance as a critical dance writing fellow with See Chicago Dance.
Freelance critic Tristan Bruns is a tap dancer from Chicago. Tristan is a professional company member of M.A.D.D. Rhythms and was a founding member of the Chicago Human Rhythm Project's resident ensemble, BAM!. Tristan is the director of Tapman Productions, LLC, a multi-genre dance production company and tap dance floor rental service. Besides tap dancing, Tristan has been a featured columnist at DanceAdvantage.net and currently pens the blog The Tap Book at TapmanProductions.com. Tristan holds a BA in music from Columbia College Chicago.
A Chicago native, Freelance critic Emma Elsmo has been dancing since the mere age of two and has been writing for as long as she can remember. She began her formal dance training at the Academy of Movement and Music in Oak Park, Illinois, and was fortunate enough to spend summers training with both Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Deeply Rooted Dance Theater. Elsmo graduated in May 2019 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts concentrated in dance performance and choreography from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA. While there, she enjoyed dancing with a handful of amazing artists and writing for the Philadelphia Dance Journal. She looks forward to exploring the Chicago dance scene on a deeper level.
Freelance critic Felicia Holman is a native Chicagoan, independent cultural producer/facilitator and co-founder of Afrodiasporic feminist creative collective Honey Pot Performance. She is also a 2020-2021 Threewalls RaDLab fellow. Felicia's creative, professional and social practices are firmly grounded in critical thought, intersectionality, community building and embodied storytelling. Her most recent published works include reviews for See Chicago Dance and Performance Response Journal, as well as a guest essay at The Quarantine Times (published by the Public Media Institute). Felicia relishes her artrepreneurial life and sums it up in three words: Creator, Connector, Conduit.
Matt de la Pena