Harkness Center Healthy Dancer Initiative

Harkness Center Healthy Dancer Initiative


The Harkness Center Healthy Dancer Initiative (HCHDI) provides a cohort of professional dancers in financial need with free wellness workshops to encourage a sound, holistic approach to self-care and aid in career longevity and subsidized classes at two of New York City’s premier dance centers.

Benefits include:
  • Free professional development courses and injury prevention workshops at the two Centers, led by Harkness Center for Dance Injuries staff.
  • $5 dance technique and somatic classes at Gibney and Mark Morris Dance Center. Dancers may take up to 25 classes over the six-month term across the two centers. All adult drop-in classes are included.
  • Free Injury Prevention Assessment conducted by the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries
Dancers are eligible based on financial need – gross household income is equal to or below 225% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) – and accepted by lottery into each six-month term. There are two terms each year. View Income Threshold chart.

Term Run:  July 1 – December 22, 2024

Application Opens: Friday, April 19

Application Closes: Friday, May 17

Notification of Acceptance: Friday, May 31

Confirm Acceptance: Friday, June 14


About the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries:

As the world’s leading clinical program in Dance Medicine, the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries at NYU Langone Health (HCDI) has dedicated itself to enhancing the health, well-being and quality of life of dancers and dance companies by providing breakthrough approaches to injury prevention, advanced medical treatment, education and training, and state-of-the-art research. HCDI is expanding its reach through the new Harkness Center Healthy Dancer Initiative, a wellness program in partnership with Gibney and like-minded organizations. For more information about HCDI programs and services, go to www.danceinjury.org.


Gibney is a groundbreaking organization whose vision is to tap into the vast potential of movement, creativity and performance to effect social change and personal transformation. Through our three interrelated fields of work— Center, two beautiful spaces at 890 and 280 Broadway in New York City comprising a vibrant performing arts complex; Company, the acclaimed resident dance ensemble led by choreographer Gina Gibney; and Community Action, our highly respected social action program. Gibney Dance is “Making Space for Dance” in studios, on stages, and in partnership with schools and organizations addressing gender violence.

Gibney is at the forefront of mobilizing the arts to address social justice issues. The organization’s highly respected programs use movement to transform lives through multiple platforms, including: Movement Workshops, which shares tools of choice, self-expression, collaboration and self-care with survivors of intimate partner violence; Hands are for Holding assemblies and residencies, which engage New York City youth on the topic of violence and bullying prevention; and Moving Toward Justice, which mobilizes artists to respond to social issues. Gibney values all that artists have to offer as makers, activists and entrepreneurs and allows these skillsets to flourish under one roof and reverberate back into the community.


The Mark Morris Dance Center is a creative and cultural hub for community members of all levels of experience and interests, with and without disabilities. Home to the world-renowned Mark Morris Dance Group, The School at the mark Morris Dance Center, Adult Dance & Fitness programs, and Dance for PD®, the Dance Center also shares its studios with independent dance artists through its Subsidized Rehearsal Space Program.


Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Who is eligible?

Professional and professional-track dancers are eligible based on financial need which is determined based on income and household size.

Q: Do I have to live in New York to qualify?

No! There are no residency restrictions. Applications from international dancers are also welcome.

Q: How many applicants are accepted per term?

50 dancers are accepted for each six-month term. Please note: Only complete and qualified applications will be entered into the lottery.

Q: May I apply more than once?

Yes. If you aren’t selected for a term, you are welcome to apply again for entry into the lottery.

Q: If I’ve participated in one session, may I apply for another?

At this time, participants are only eligible for one term.

Q: What are the selected participants expected to do?

  • Use full benefits (take 30 $5 classes within the 4-month term)
  • Participate in a wellness screening, which will take place in the Wellness Center at the Mark Morris Dance Center
  • Plan to attend the Injury Prevention workshop and any of additional workshops offered during the term
  • Participate in the ongoing evaluation and assessment of the program.

Q: How do I calculate my income?

1. Identify all of your sources of income

  • Income from employment (W-2 or 1099)
  • Income from self-employment
  • Income from other sources

Some examples:

  • A paycheck, weekly, bi-weekly or monthly
  • Tips in cash at each shift
  • Any kind of weekly or monthly payment, such as child support, pension, or unemployment benefits
  • Annual bonus

2. Convert wages into yearly totals.

  • Hourly wages from an employer (before taxes and other deductions are taken out)
  • Gross income on a pay stub (paid weekly, every two weeks, etc.)
  • Net income earned from self-employment (after business and other expenses are taken out)

3. Add income from all sources together to get your total annual income.

Q: How do I determine family size or who should be included in my household?

Members of your household include:

  • Spouse
  • Registered domestic partner
  • Dependents
  • Joint tax filer

Independent roommates or friends staying with you do not make up your household for tax or income reporting purposes, unless you claim them as dependents.