Pitching to us or sending us PR

Want to send us (or other dance publications) PR or a pitch?  What’s below is not carved in stone. Someone else might prefer contact via social media; The Log prefers email. But these pointers are based on common sense and should help with other publications.

Should you send us a release? The Log covers dance in NYC. We will occasionally cover outside that area, but mostly only for something major. We rarely write on forms other than dance.

How to send it: Email only. Not surface mail, and not via Facebook or other social media, please. To reach Leigh – leigh [at] dancelog.nyc. Martha is at martha [at] dancelog.nyc.

When to send it: Please send your release 3-4 weeks out. This is a good lead time for online publications, or daily or weekly print publications. Monthly print publications will want 6-12 weeks, quarterlies as much as 6 months.

It’s OK to send it earlier or more than once. Please don’t deluge us. If you send it to The Log for the first time less than ten days before your performance, you diminish the chance of us acting on it to almost nil.

I really, really want as much information in the subject line of your email as you can give me. “Your Dance Company performs Title at This Theater on Date at Time.” We absolutely need all of that information – make sure it is at minimum somewhere towards the top of your release. This means I can drop your email directly into my calendar – and it will go directly into my calendar. If you don’t, it will be put in my calendar when I have time to find that information in your release. If I ever find your release in my email pile again.

PDF or Text? The Log prefers text, but other places prefer pdf. You cover all bases if you want to send a pdf, but put the identical information in text in the email.

Send us a release for a single event only. It’s fine to send us a season overview release as long as you also send us individual releases at the appropriate time.  We get several releases daily and do this in our spare time. It is a ton of extra work for us to extract individual performances from a compilation release, and often we just don’t have the time.

Should I send a photo, or a link to a video? A good photo can give your work legitimacy, as can a short video. I don’t always have time to look at video, but another writer friend relies on them to make decisions about what she will feature or preview.

A photo doesn’t have to be a performance shot, but should convey the mood of what we’re going to see. A video should be of the work we’re going to see, not a sampler video or some other work. The more professional your promotional material is, the more professional you look.

Don’t send us a several megabyte, print quality photo. You never know if we’re on the road, or it crashes our mailbox. A web quality photo of about 150kb should be fine. If you give us a choice of photos, send one in vertical layout and another in horizontal. (That matters more to print than to online, but it’s good to do).

Who does what? We both cover all forms of dance; but Leigh’s home turf is ballet; Martha’s is contemporary. Read The Log and you’ll get an idea of what we each cover.

Would we be interested in doing a feature or a preview? Our main focus is reviewing and if we do something else, it didn’t originate from a pitch, but from our personal knowledge of the work covered. Similarly, our weekly “Radar” preview only covers artists whose work we’re familiar with.

I really wish I didn’t have to do this myself. We get that. Leigh ran his own dance company for a decade and wore many hats, including publicist.  It’s exhausting to have to do everything.  There are a few PR people in New York who can help. To have realistic expectations, don’t expect them to cover their costs in increased ticket sales or fill your house (that just about never happens) but they can help you increase your visibility and legitimacy. They also know who is writing in New York, and have a relationship with us.

Here are a few people we deal with all the time; they work with small dance groups and we regard them highly: They’re in alphabetical order.

Adria Rolnik
Audrey Ross
Blake Zidell
Helene Davis
In the Lights
Janet Stapleton
Kamila Slawinski
Kevin McAnarney
Michelle Tabnick

The Log’s handy-dandy primer on dance press – what it is, how to get it and how to cope with it.

Part 1: Writing a press release for dance performances

Part 2: Pitching to us or sending us PR.

Part 3: Press at your show

Part 4: Press after the show – the review that gets written, or doesn’t.