The Lights Dance Festival aspires to celebrate dance storytelling in its diversity and endless possibilities through the cinematic medium and live performance. With a vision of making dance more accessible to all, we strive to provide excellent programming of international and local screendance and live dance each year. As a not-for-profit which values and celebrates independent art and interdisciplinary collaborations, Lights Dance is committed to building sustainable relationships and infrastructures through which we can support artists of all backgrounds.
Lights Dance wants to make dance more accessible to all. Our vision is to create a safe space for those who want to learn and encounter dance in a fresh way whilst providing a platform on which underrepresented artists can collaborate and showcase their work. With the belief that dance is a connecting force, capable of forging new relationships and hope, we strive for ways to evolve and increase our community engagement.
We are a Seattle-based not-for-profit community initiative looking to build connections and make space for vibrant dance cultures. If you would like to work with us, please drop us an email.
Lights Dance Festival began with its inaugural event held at the Drake Hotel in Toronto on June 18th, 2017. A collaboration with Momentum Dance Toronto, we opened to a full house and offered a hybrid program that interweaved cinematic and live-dance components.
After three vibrant years in Toronto, Lights Dance relocated to Seattle in September 2020. The Northwest Film Forum (NWFF) has been its main collaborator since 2021.
PAST TEAM MEMBERS
Gabbie Pangan // Marketing and Outreach
Gabbie is a Maker Educator with interest in graphic design and dance. She attended her first dance class at STUDIO II, a Ryerson extracurricular group that aims to create an inclusive learning environment for all styles and levels of dance. From there, she became interested in exploring the fundamental techniques used in different dance styles. She has taken part in various training programs, introducing her to house, contemporary and hip hop styles. Gabbie is a proud member of the School Of Groove training program and FOREAL Dance Company.
Janet Tran // Festival Coordinator
Janet Tran is a Toronto based interdisciplinary artist currently creating immersive installations that examine multiculturalism, racism, feminism, mental health, and cultural identity in the Canadian context. Interested in exploring the transformation of space with furniture, found objects, light, and sound; as well as further experimenting with methods of storytelling by appealing to senses beyond visual and aural. Tran identifies as a Canadian of Chinese and Vietnamese descent. Born and raised in Ontario, she majored in Integrated Media at Ontario’s College of Art and Design University, receiving her Bachelors of Fine Arts in 2017.
Jasmine Gui // Festival Coordinator
Jasmine Gui is the founder of Project 40 Collective, an interdisciplinary pan-Asian artist collective based in Toronto and managing editor at LooseLeaf magazine. Coming from a marketing background in grassroots and community arts, she currently also works as a freelance arts administrator and has collaborated on festivals with VIBE Arts, and Regent Park Film Festival. She is an avid lover of dance and dance films, but also dabs in the literary scene as a poet.
Warren Chan // Marketing and Outreach
Warren Chan has been supporting arts organizations through marketing and communications-related roles for the past 10 years. In the past, he has worked with the Vancouver International Film Festival, DanceHouse, the Vancouver Fringe Festival, and a variety of Vancouver-based dance companies. Currently, Warren is working towards his MA at York University, where he is researching the use of A.I.-generated images in experimental video art. He also dabbles in video art; his past works include This Is DVD (2018), and his current ongoing projects include two experimental documentaries about Vancouver and Toronto.
Kyle Branson // Administrative Intern
Kyle Branson is a student at the University of Washington pursuing a degree in Cinema and Media Studies. Born in Redmond and raised in Duvall, Washington, he found an early love for films shared from his father. As an adult, he has developed a strong interest in free, independent, and creative thinking, something he applies to both his studies and filmmaking. He has worked on film production as part of the LUX Film Club and has directed his own student projects. He is graduating in 2023 after which he plans to pursue a career in filmmaking. He is most interested in directing and scriptwriting but is interested in learning as many filmmaking skills as possible.
Tram Anh Vu // Marketing and Outreach Intern
From a young age, Tram has developed a great interest in performance art and dancing in particular, she has participated in dance activities as a dancer since then. Currently, she is pursuing a degree in Cinema & Media Studies and Business with a focus on Marketing at the University of Washington. She is passionate in strategic marketing planning and generating visual contents, which she wishes to apply to the film and entertainment industry post-graduate.
Vivian Chuang // Social Media + Web Admin
Vivian Chuang is a Seattle based interdisciplinary artist of Taiwanese descent presently focused on net art and pulp illustration. She has worked with organizations on festival events such as Northwest Film Forum’s Local Sightings and North Bend Film Festival as well as production planning and crew work for commercial projects. Born in Kirkland and raised in Seattle and Taipei, she graduated from University of Washington with Cinema Media Studies and Interdisciplinary Visual Arts degrees along with a minor in experimental/new media arts in 2020.
Sarah Choi // Executive Director
Sarah Choi is an independent Korean-Canadian filmmaker born in Seoul, currently based in Seattle. Growing up in various cities in Korea, America, and Canada, Sarah developed a nomadic sense of identity and a passion for diversity, art, and justice. After graduating from university with a degree in Biology, she made a leap of faith by moving to New York City to study documentary filmmaking. Sarah won the Best Director Award at the Atlanta International Documentary Film Festival in 2012 and Best Documentary Film at the 2020 Davis Feminist Film Festival. She recently produced Shanawdithit VR in collaboration with Tapestry Opera and directed Bird, Man, Water (2021).
Tilli Rossetti // Administrative Intern
Tilli Rossetti is a Cinema and Media Studies major at the University of Washington. Born in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, she has always been fascinated by the world around her and began telling stories from a very young age. Dreaming of being a storyteller, she moved to Seattle to learn how film can be used to tell stories. Graduating in 2024, her post-grad plans include living abroad to enrich her life and the stories she one day hopes to share with the world. One day she will get a masters degree in some sort of storytelling medium, be it film directing, screenwriting, creative writing, or journalism, but she doesn’t have that figured out quite yet. Her passions include writing, skiing, reading, photography, old Italian and French films, and good food.
Neve Lin // Marketing and Outreach Intern
Neve is a Cinema and Media studies student at the University of Washington, who dabbles a bit in visual content creation and performative arts. She strongly believes in the power of community and is an active member of the local film and dance scene. Additionally, she enjoys advocating for the intersectionality between arts and sciences, which she plans on continuously exploring postgraduate.