SFDFF 2024 Spring Showcase

Digital Program: Spring Showcase

Friday, April 26, 2024 @ 7:30pm at ODC Theater
Program runtime: 57 minutes
Co-presented by: ODC

Experience a selection of ten short films, including documentary shorts, narratives, and experimental screendance works, that represent a dynamic range of creativity with broad audience appeal. Take a tour of diverse dance styles as smoldering jazz, flamboyant drag, athletic street dance, and world-class ballet come into conversation across the globe. From the intimacy of dance studios to the bustling streets of Lagos, Mexico City, and San Francisco’s own soaring hilltops, dancers find poetic expression in the universal language of the body in motion.

Lady Be Good, James Kinney, Pierre Marais

Lady Be Good

James Kinney, Pierre Marais
James Kinney
(United States, 2021) 5:57 minutes
A sizzling homage to jazz music and dance past and present, “Lady Be Good” showcases the antics of a leading lady and her many suitors in a smoky barroom.

As the bartender reflects on this unforgettable night, the lady appears to him dancing through high-stepping solos, playful rivalries, and sultry encounters.

Every Step Counts–Takano Yonen, Andreas Guzman

Every Step Counts | Takano Yonen

Andreas Guzman
Takano Yonen
(Hong Kong, 2023) 3:31 minutes
“Every Step Counts” takes an inside look at the artistic inspiration and motivations of Takano Yonen, a Japanese soloist member of the Hong Kong Ballet.

As he dances through urban and natural surroundings, he meditates on the influence of his cultural background and values on his approach to the ritual and language of dance, shapeshifting to express the many dimensions of his life.


Circle–Phillip Kaminiak


Phillip Kaminiak
Qiaoqiao Zhang
(United States, 2022) 6:10 minutes
With undulating athleticism, powerful unisons, and a hypnotic score, "CIRCLE" explores cosmic forces at play for people living in mass cities.

The film draws an analogy between modern urban life and the phenomenon of the “circle of death” or “death spiral” observed in nature with ants that lose the pheromone track of their foraging party and begin to follow one another in a continuously rotating circle leading to exhaustion and death. Shot in Mexico City, this vibrant and impressive city symbolizes a life in endless movement and self-exhaustion in a capitalistic world.

Then Comes The Body, Jacob Krupnick

Then Comes The Body

Jacob Krupnick
Daneil Owoseni Ajala
(United States, 2023) 14:20 minutes
“Then Comes the Body” is a short documentary about the challenges and opportunities experienced by students at the Leap of Dance Academy, Nigeria’s first and only ballet school.

Training on the dusty urban streets of Lagos, self-taught dancer and teacher Daniel Ajala’s passion drives his students to persevere as underdogs in the ballet world and find joy and meaning in their work. As top students compete for international scholarships and begin to leave home, Ajala realizes the best thing he can do is be a bridge for the next generation.

Wintersweet on the Snow, Cuiying Li

Wintersweet on the Snow

Cuiying Li
Cuiying Li
(China, 2022) 4:34 minutes
Set in an ice castle amid a sweeping frozen landscape, “Windersweet on the Snow” expresses spiritual longing and connection as two dancers embody the flowering of a new dawn.

Through the oblivion and desolation of the snow field, their flowing flame lights the journey through seasonal change and mystical evolution.

Isolation-Andrew Margetson


Andrew Margetson
Shay Latukolan
(United Kingdom, 2023) 2:37 minutes
Confined to a small white box, the lone dancer in “Isolation” finds expansive expression and quiet curiosity in a fluidly rippling dance.

In this seclusion, flashes of aggression and small moments of joy appear and dissolve as the dancer reckons with the internal and external forces of life. Isolation is only as lonely as you make it.

Detour–Up On High (excerpt) Robbie Sweeny. EricGarcia

Up On High (excerpt: “The Nelken Line”)

Eric Garcia
Eric Garcia after Pina Bausch
(United States, 2022) 3:42 minutes
A selection from the nine-part dance film spectacular “Up On High,” “The Nelken Line” is a heartfelt rendition of Pina Bausch’s looping, gestural choreography by a colorful assemblage of queer artists.

Tracing high along a Bay Area hillside, this intergenerational cast of QTBIPOC artists, drag performers, and activists soars into futurism, queer legacy, and embodied ancestry.

Bleach-Caleb Soon


Caleb Soon
Devon Stone Johnson
(United States, 2023) 4:27 min
In “Bleach,” a young man on the losing side of his battle with depression gradually falls deeper into dejection and isolation.

The realities of his mind and the world around him blur as he struggles to keep track of the shift between days and nights. This film takes a close look at depression from the inside and serves as a reminder that we are not alone, even in our darkest times.

sfdff 2023 Heartache Iker Karrera


Iker Karrera, Alberto D. Centeno
Iker Karrera
(Spain, 2021) 3:21 minutes
Set in a derelict theater, “Heartache” deploys tensely expressive movement in a darkly playful take on the dynamics of seeing and being seen.

At once kitschy and confrontational, the dancers move with deadpan gazes through tight trios with razor-sharp precision and evocative gestures. Glimpses of private moments and vivid bodily imagery highlight the tension between the individual and society.

Old Man at the Corner Store-Nadav Heyman, Anabella Casanova

Old Man at the Corner Store

Nadav Heyman, Anabella Casanova
Nadav Heyman, Cheryl Mann
(United States, 2023) 8:10 minutes
In “Old Man at the Corner Store,” an elderly man crosses paths with young neighborhood mischief-makers and dances them through a game of “follow the leader”.

As they race through the streets together, movement is their guide to exchange taunts and challenges and discover new ways of experiencing the world.