Surreal dance film festival kicks off at PAMM party

Alan Lake’s film “Ravages” is part of Tigertail’s Screendance Miami festival
Alan Lake’s film “Ravages” is part of Tigertail’s Screendance Miami festival By Alan Lake

PAMM is popping this Thursday, with a radical dance on film festival adding visual and physical juice to the downtown museum's monthly Poplife Social celebration.

Tigertail Productions' annual Screendance Miami festival, which opens at 7 p.m. Thursday at PAMM, showcases the fascinating and disorienting world of dance films. Traditional live performances may be under siege. But dance on screen, with the way visual and special effects can multiply the power of bodies in motion, and its potentially vast online audience, is expanding. Thursday's opening event features films from the Dutch Cinedans festival, including "Dancin' the Camera," where a tap dancer interacts with a 1920's black and white camera and "She/Her," which sets a daughter's fantasy world against her mother's reality.

SCREENDANCE MIAMI 2017 - TRAILER from Tigertail Miami on Vimeo.

ScreenDance Miami is a Tigertail-produced festival that takes place the end of each January at various venues. It offers skill-developing workshops, panel discussions and screenings. ScreenDance Miami highlights national, international and Miami-based choreographers and filmmakers who are working with emerging and new concepts in regard to movement and dance on film and dance on camera. The festival was created to support professionals in this field and the development of dance created for the camera. ScreenDance Miami seeks to engage the public and bring to light this adventuresome form. For the fourth year in a row, Tigertail is partnering with the internationally acclaimed Cinedans of the Netherlands.

Trailer by Heber Siqueiros

The Cinedans films are one to 11 minutes long, so that you can dip in and out of gorgeous visuals (almost as if you were watching online), and head out to the PAMM patio, where indie R&B artist Native Youth is performing and there are cocktails, a scavenger hunt, and art-making activities. (Except for the alcohol, sounds very much like an arty upscale children's birthday party.)

Screendance continues Friday at the Miami Beach Cinematheque. Don't miss "Exquisite Corps," where 42 legendary avant-garde choreographers slip-slide through a single dance in multiple landscapes, from ports to mountains to gardens to apartment hallways, as if on one continuous global stage. On Saturday the festival is back at PAMM as well as at MDC Live Arts Lab, the college's new experimental, intimate performance venue in the old Teatro Prometeo space at Wolfson Campus.

The festival includes films from Miami choreographers (some of them nurtured by Screendance) Ivonne Batanero, Marissa Alma Nick, Niurca Marquez, and Screendance director and choreographer/producer/cultural instigator Pioneer Winter. There are also free workshops in choreographing for the camera, filmmaking, and legal issues surrounding copyright and other tricky but essential questions. Cost is minimal, from free to a top ticket price of $11. Details and a complete schedule are at tigertail.org.

If you go

What: Screendance Miami opening with Cinedans at PAMM

When: 7 p.m. Thursday

Where: PAMM, 1103 Biscayne Blvd., Miami

Info: Free with museum admission ($16 general, $12 students/seniors.) Screendance schedule at Tigertail.org.

PAMM's Poplife Social runs from 6 to 10 p.m. (Museum galleries close at 9 p.m.)