Founded in 1990 by our Artistic and Executive Director, Douglas Scott, the organization was originally known as Dance Force. The company began as a ‘traditional’ dance company in which all members were professional dancers without disabilities.

In 1993, through a partnership with VSA arts of GA, Shepherd Center and Special Audiences, Douglas began teaching dance classes for persons with physical disabilities, changing the course of his career. He was intrigued by the challenge of creating a modern dance technique that would be inclusive and challenging for all physical abilities, one that was firmly founded in art and not designed to be “therapeutic.” Through hard work, trial and error, and mutual learning between him and his students, Douglas developed a distinct style and technique, now celebrated for its artistry and inclusiveness.

Gina Marie (foreground), Courtney Michelle McClendon and Jodie Jernigan (2023). Photo by Terence Rushin.
AK Bayer and Cecilia Rodriguez (2023). Photo by Terence Rushin.

In 1995, Douglas was asked to create dances for the Arts Festival of Atlanta-commissioned production of “Visage En Face,” which was a collaboration with rock band Van Gogh. Douglas and Ardath Prendergast – a dancer, choreographer, and arts administrator with VSA Arts of GA – enlisted several members of the dance class and on one foggy evening in Piedmont Park, launched the first performance of the dance company, E=Motion. Although it was under the Dance Force board of directors and fiscal sponsorship, E=Motion operated separately from the Dance Force company until the feasibility of this new and bold venture was determined. The company soon thrived in its new ambition. In 1998, E=Motion merged with Dance Force to create Full Radius Dance, with Douglas serving as the Artistic and Executive Director and Ardath as Artistic Associate – a position she held until her relocation in 2003.

Full Radius Dance maintains a highly rigorous and active performance schedule in the Greater Atlanta area, as well as regionally, nationally, and internationally. Locally, the company presents an annual repertory concert and produces the annual Modern Atlanta Dance (MAD) Festival. The company is committed to redefining the boundaries of dance through performance, education, and advocacy, and constantly seeks opportunities to promote its core values for body positivity. At Full Radius Dance, we believe that your body is perfect, has undiscovered movement, and can experience dance.

Dance Force, Inc. DBA Full Radius Dance is a designated 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

Jodie Jernigan and Peter L. Trojic (2023). Photo by Terence Rushin.