Directed by Julia Rae Antonick

This work will be presented by The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events in the Yates Gallery of the Chicago Cultural Center in June & July 2024 and The John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan, Wisconsin in January 2025.

To apply for an appointment for Tend, click here.

Tend imagines a world where your monthly, weekly, or yearly dance appointment is a legitimate need. Matched with a dancer/technician for an hour long appointment, the interactive performance envelopes the guest in a highly structured choreographic journey designed to respond to interests and needs that emerge on the day of the visit. Weaving together consensual touch, conversation, music, and movement, Tend offers a much-needed opportunity to rest, recharge, reflect, and foster connection.
Tend is a service-based performance experience fulfilling a socially requisite and biologically exigent allogrooming need. Structured as a one hour appointment, the self-care informed dance and music scores simultaneously envelopes the audience while leaving space to allow your nervous system to settle, contemplate the inherent power differentials in human interaction, and allow the somatic possibility of conflict resolution in true social grooming form. Colliding necessity, extravagance, and irrelevance, it imagines a world where your monthly dance appointment is a legitimate need, a necessary line item in your personal budget. A haptic, phatic, and kinetic service providing a much-needed place to rest, recharge, reflect, reconcile. An environment supporting small talk, catching up, grooming bodies and relationships in turn.
In short, come ready to chat, be touched/touch, and watch a performance made especially for you.
For FAQs/more information click here.
To meet the Technicians for the performances, click here.
To find scheduled events visit our calendar.
“As I left ‘Tend,’ I felt light, like walking on air.”
See Chicago Dance 
“…[Antonick] was interested in the necessity of human touch, and to imagine how a dance appointment could become part of a regular self-care routine.”
A idea of what you might experience:

An audience of two checking in at a reception desk
A choreographed service for tending hair and skin to activate c-tactile nerve fibers
Vellus through androgenic
Scalp through neck
Arms through fingertips
The other attendee(s) sitting in the lounge area and lightly chatting together and with the receptionist
Occasionally watching the movement of the service being performed
Or flipping through a devised magazine or research materials sitting on a coffee table
Being guided through an experience of small talk as social glue
Observing and being observed
Body positive chitchat
Sending you back into the world
Socially stimulated
Somatically organized


Artists who are currently working on this project are:
Julia Rae Antonick – choreographer/director
Jonathan Meyer – environmental construction/design/lighting/project discussion
Gina Hoch-Stall – project discussion/main cast performer/care contact
Chih-Hsien Lin – project discussion/main cast performer
Enid Smith – project discussion/main cast performer
Helen Lee – project discussion/main cast performer
Tina Diaz – project discussion/main cast performer
Joe St.Charles – composer/project discussion
Jeff Hancock – environmental construction/costuming/project discussion
Heather LaHood – architect/project discussion/environmental construction/design
Kristin Weinberg – photography
Other Artists involved in the past iterations