A long-time Santa Barbara entertainment favorite, BASSH! takes audiences on a global dance tour showcasing Santa Barbara's finest Competition Ballroom, Latin Exhibition, Swing, Hip Hop, Jazz, Cabaret, the hottest dance fitness groups, and more! First presented in 2000 at the Lobero Theatre by Dance Alliance was when Julie McLeod was Executive Director. Derrick Curtis Productions began presenting BASSH! in 2013 at Center Stage Theater and for the last three years at the New Victoria Street Theater. The BASSH! performances elevate the awareness of local dance studios and encourages the audience to experience and appreciate the many dance styles presented.
This year, BASSH honored Julie McLeod as a Local Dance Hero for her numerous contributions to Santa Barbara and the dance world at large.
Attending Juilliard School of Dance on scholarship, Julie McLeod studied with greats like Martha Graham, Jose Limon, Doris Humphrey, and Anthony Tudor. She danced Off Broadway, USO in Europe, toured with Yul Brynner in "King and I," and landed the biggie on Broadway, the original company of "West Side Story." In 1979, she opened Dance Warehouse, in Santa Barbara, a studio with 20 teachers, 4 studios, guest classes and performances that became the hub of dance in Santa Barbara. Julie created Art Without Limits a nonprofit to serve highly talented artists in Santa Barbara County in 2009. At the beginning of 2018, she entered into a well-deserved semi-retirement handing over the AWoL reins to Jodi McLeod, who had been co-directing the organization with Julie for over a year. Julie has joined the AWoL Board and will be focusing her resources on expanding the AWoL Mentorship Program.
Derrick Curtis has taught social dance forms for over 30 years, was a board member for Santa Barbara Dance Alliance and the recipient of their 12th Lifetime Achievement Award for contribution to dance in Santa Barbara. He was mentored by Julie McLeod in Dance Production and uses Fiscal Sponsorship from AWoL for processing grants to BASSH.