Dance Exchange Marks 20 Years in Takoma Park Home

Innovative dance organization has become mainstay for creative action and movers of all ages and abilities in Montgomery County, MD


Takoma Park, MD, September 26, 2017 – Dance Exchange, a non-profit dance organization committed to connecting people of all ages through dancemaking and creative practices, kicks off their 20th year in their home studios in Takoma Park and Montgomery County, Maryland, in 2017-18.

Founded in 1976 by Liz Lerman and under the artistic direction of Executive Artistic Director Cassie Meador since 2011, Dance Exchange breaks boundaries between stage and audience, theater and community, and movement and language. Under the name Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, the organization moved into 7117 Maple Avenue – formerly the Takoma Park Post Office – in 1996 to use as an administrative site. Studios were added in 1997 for the intergenerational performance company’s rehearsal space and, in 1998, “Liz Lerman Dance Exchange” opened as a school for movers and makers of all ages. A previously low-profile building rented as storage facilities, the opening of Dance Exchange brightened and brought a community-focused profile to the large brick facility on Maple Avenue. The building was fully renovated in 2004 to create office space, a community lobby, and three large studios that continue to house current Dance Exchange programming and provide rental space for local artists, organizers, and groups.

As Dance Exchange begins their fifth decade as an organization—with 20 years in Takoma Park—they remain committed to championing artists and audiences to think beyond the stage and towards the ways dancemaking can have an impact in our lives and communities.  Dance Exchange is marking this milestone of 20 years in Takoma Park and Montgomery County, Maryland, with programs that continue to cultivate local roots while extending their reach and impact out in the world, including:

  • The premiere of Growing Our Own Gardens, directed by Associate Artistic Director Matthew Cumbie, an intergenerational performance project rooted in queer world-making and celebrating LGBTQ+ histories of the DC-metro area, including workshops and performances with the HRC Commission of Rockville, programming in Dance Exchange’s studios, and a performance at Dance Place in February 2018
  • Spring and summer camps in local and regional parks in Montgomery County, including Brookside Nature Center, for ages 6-10 using Cassie Meador’s Moving Field Guide, a program partnering naturalists and artists in national and regional parks across the country that bring science and art together to explore local ecosystems
  • Weekly dance classes for all ages, abilities, and backgrounds, often with live music
  • Youth Exchange and Teen Exchange — programming for ages 8-18 to cultivate skills in leadership and collaboration through dancemaking, plus performances at the ATLAS INTERSECTIONS 2018 Festival and Dance Exchange’s Youth Arts Night
  • A party at the Dance Exchange studios to celebrate 20 years with neighbors, supporters, and friends in Takoma Park on June 9, 2018


Founded in 1976 by Liz Lerman and under the artistic direction of Cassie Meador since 2011, Dance Exchange is a non-profit dance organization based in Takoma Park, Maryland. Dance Exchange’s innovative local, national, and international performance projects engage communities and partners across a wide range of disciplines. Dance Exchange ignites inquiry, inspires change, and connects people of all ages more deeply to the questions at the heart of our lives through dancemaking and creative practices by collaborating across generations, disciplines and communities to channel the power of performance as a means for dialogue, a source of critical reflection, and a creative engine for thought and action.