About Dancing Earth

Photo by Paulo T. Photography

Photo by Paulo T. Photography

DANCING EARTH CREATIONS dynamically animates our mission to support Indigenous dance and related arts, to encourage and revitalize awareness of bio-cultural diversity through artistic expression for the education and wellness of all peoples.

This mission is active through the national work of DANCING EARTH Indigenous Intertribal dance Ensemble (director Rulan Tangen), and two year-round associate youth cultural dance training programs in the Bay Area. Cuicacalli Escuela de Danza is led by director Jesus “Jacoh” Cortes, guest artist since 2006 of DANCING EARTH) in San Francisco, and the Dance Zone in Cupertino is led by director Daniel Arizmendi ( guest artist since 2012 DANCING EARTH).

To learn more, please view : www.cuicacalliescueladedanza.org

L to R : Ehren Natay with Jesus "Jacoh" Cortes, director of Cuicacalli Esuela de Danza, photographer Elizabeth Opalenik

L to R : Ehren Natay with Jesus “Jacoh” Cortes, director of Cuicacalli Esuela de Danza, photographer Elizabeth Opalenik

DANCING EARTH CREATIONS is committed to mentorship of emerging artists, providing opportunities for Indigenous employment across all areas of dance production , education, and administration, to develop the next generation of Indigenous dance.

In support of our mission we are available for:
– Community Engagement Workshops
– Dance Training Intensives
– Lectures and Motivational Speaking
– Creative Residencies
– Residencies for creation of Site specific performance rituals, as performed by Dancing Earth , or with inclusion of local community members
– Touring full length production for theater or excerpts for unconventional spaces
– Touring repertory excerpts for festivals and special events
– Commissions and collaborations
– Cultural consultation
– Film collaborations

DANCING EARTH has been named by Dance Magazine as “One of the Top 25 to Watch”, and are recipients of the National Museum of American Indian’s 2010 Expressive Arts Award. In every aspect of artistic collaboration – including dance, choreography, music, costume, lighting, video, stage managing – DANCING EARTH gathers Indigenous collaborators, including Nations of Blackfoot, Metis, Coushatta, Ixil and Tzeltil Maya, Papanga, Cambiva, Yaqui, Purepecha, Shoshone, Dine, Tsalagi, Hopi, Tewa, Tiwa, Towa, and Keresan of North Central and South America. They balance a commitment to share dances with regional, national and international communities at venues as varied as festivals , Universities , elementary-high schools, Native wellness gatherings, youth leadership symposiums, art museums , desert canyons , dried river beds, and symposiums for social-environmental justice. DANCING EARTH inspires creativity and cultural consciousness through community art practice, energetic dance training workshops, site specific rituals and full length eco-productions.

“We gather as individual artists to create experimental yet elemental dances that reflect our rich cultural heritage and to explore identity as contemporary Native peoples. We strive to embody the unique essences of Indigenous multi-tribal perspectives by creation and renewal of artistic and cultural movement rituals. Ancient and futuristic, our dances are an elemental language of bone and blood memory in motion.”


Awards and Accolades


In 2015 -17 Rulan and Dancing Earth were honored by :

* 2017 Invoking the Pause award – supporting Climate Change Trailblazers

*2016 A Blade Of Grass fellowship for social change

*2016 National Dance Project Production and Touring Award

* 2015 Arts for Social Change award from the Arts and Healing Network

* 2015 Nathan Cummings Fellowship for Social Change as a top ten finalist across all disciplines 

* 2015 Community Leadership Award from the New Mexico School for the Arts


In 2013 , each company member was awarded a medallion by the US Ambassador to New Zealand for our cultural ambassadorship and artistry , in exchange with Maori people ( including longtime colleagues Terri Ripeka Crawford of Korou Productions, designer Tracey Marama Lloydd , and choreographer Jack Gray ) for the Kowhiti Festival, at the Wellington Opera House .


In 2012 Native Arts and Culture Foundation announced their first Dance Fellow for Artistic Innovation: honoree Rulan Tangen, for her work with Dancing Earth!

The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation (NACF) – the first national 501(c)(3) charity committed to building a fund dedicated exclusively to foster the revitalization, appreciation and continuity of Native arts and cultures. “Support for this country’s Native arts and cultures is critical to our Foundation’s mission, which is to nurture the creativity of Native artists and organizations through our grantmaking program,” says NACF President/CEO  T. Lulani Arquette (Native Hawaiian). “The NACF congratulates all of our 2011 grantees for projects and work that have not only inspired us at the NACF but also raised the visibility of Native arts and cultures in the United States and globally.”



“DANCING EARTH CREATIONS is honored to be selected for the 2010 National Museum of American Indian Expressive Arts Award. The award is to create site specific structured improvisation, to balance professional performance practice with functional ritual that serves as the root of Native dance and the heart of Dancing Earth’s creativity.”



DANCING EARTH proudly announces that we have been selected by the prestigious National Dance Project for a production grant so Rulan Tangen can create a full length new work for 4 male and 4 female company members.

Click on the link below to go to the new Dancing Earth blog/news or here to READ MORE…

Medal Awarded!
On April 22 2011, after DANCING EARTH’s full house performance and standing ovations, Ms Tangen was presented by Professor Jacqueline Shea Murphy with the COSTO MEDAL of the Costo Chair in American Indian Affairs, in recognition of Research, Teaching and Service to UC Riverside and the community.

Photo by Paulo T. Photography

Photo by Paulo T. Photography

Comments are closed.