The Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artists program is the most significant, sustained source of support for individual dancemakers working in Chicago, which has an open call process. In 2022, up to six Chicago-based dancemakers will each receive a cash grant of $20,000 USD along with a year of tailored support to aid in their research, development, and presentation of new dance work. Full guidelines are available at



May – July 2021: Optional Info Sessions (Registration required)

August 8, 2021 at 8pm CT:  Preliminary Applications Due (Form below)

Approximately 15 applicants will be selected as Finalists.


September 2021: Finalists notified. Each finalist meets with staff for one-on-one coaching.

October 10, 2021 at 8pm CT: Finalists’ Applications Due


Chicago Dancemakers Forum invites dancemakers (working in either improvised or choreographed forms) who identify with the following statements to apply:

  • I am currently and actively engaged in dancemaking in the Chicago Metropolitan Area (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, or Will County). [Note: Lab Artists may be asked to travel into the city for the quarterly gatherings.]
  • I have a developed a distinctive trajectory in my dancemaking.
  • I am ready to take my practice to the next level and am well positioned to participate in a year of creative research and deep inquiry.
  • I have the capacity and the time to benefit from, and contribute to, an environment of artistic interchange.
  • I can effectively make use of my time for independent project research and development.


  • Lab Artists must reside in the Chicago Metropolitan Area (Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, or Will County) during the duration of the calendar year of 2022. Applicants with dual-residency will not be considered.
  • Students enrolled in degree programs at the time of application are not eligible for the Lab Artists program.
  • Artists previously funded through the Lab Artists program previously and staff/contractors who have received >$5,000 from Chicago Dancemakers Forum in the 12 months prior to application are not eligible to apply.

​If you have questions about the Lab Artist Program, please contact Shawn Lent, Programs and Communications Director, via email at​

Chicago Dancemakers Forum