• It's heeeere.....

    It's heeeere.....

    At long last, our new full color catalogue of the Platforms retrospective has arrived!

    Platforms: Ten Years of Chances Dances features work from the citywide retrospective of the same name commemorating ten years of art and work by Chances organizers, community members, and Critical Fierceness grantees and finalists. The Platforms catalogue features full color documentation of all eight Platforms exhibitions, the three-month schedule of performances and parties, and ephemera from Chances' ten-year herstory.

    Contributing writers Kemi Adeyemi, Claire Arctander, Gordon Hall, Megan Milks, Matt Morris, John Neff & Lorelei Stewart, Roy Perez, Sharmyn Cruz Rivera, Micah Salkind, and Anna Martine Whitehead offer critical and creative responses to the work in the exhibitions and to Chances as an entity/experience.

    Edited by Aay Preston-Myint and designed by Bojan Radojcic. Photography by Robert Chase Heishman, Emily Henson, and Karmen Wettlin.

    Purchase Platforms: Ten Years of Chances Dances at Quimby's bookstore in Chicago, or online here:

    Platforms Catalogue from Chances Dances (c/o Links Hall)

  • Winter Break & A Hot Cup of Gratitude

    As you may have heard, Chances Dances on November 21st was our last official monthly party as we know it. We'll be going on a winter break for a little while to reformulate for 2016. Now with more than a few performance events, gallery shows, and international gigs under our belts, Chances is seeking to expand our reach and our format. Here in Chicago, our goal is to host fewer events but ones with larger impact, focusing on creative collaborations with other DJs, artists, and organizations. The Critical Fierceness and Mark Aguhar Memorial Grants will resume Summer 2016. 

    We also want to take a moment to thank former co-organizers Rita Bacon and Latham Owen Zearfoss as they exit the collective. Both organizers have with with Chances since it's inception and poured an endless amount of energy and love into the universe. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    Off Chances will continue monthy hosted by Latham Zearfoss and Aay Preston-Myint every second Tuesday at Danny's Tavern (1951 W. Dickens)

    During this hiatus we welcome your suggestions and questions at

  • CHANCES presents PLATFORMS: a ten-year retrospective

    CHANCES presents PLATFORMS: a ten-year retrospective

    Big big news y'all! This fall, please join Chances as we celebrate our ten-year anniversary with a multi-venue retrospective featuring the work of over 75 Chances community members, organizers, and allies. PLATFORMS celebrates the Chances community's role in Chicago's art and nightlife scenes, and in contemporary creative and political culture at large. 

    Stay tuned here as we announce art openings, performances, screenings and discussions during our two-month celebration, from September 3-October 24, 2015. 

    Hosted by: 


    Begun in 2005 as an inclusive, welcoming, and alternative queer dance party, Chances Dances is a collective of artists, activists, DJs, and educators who organize parties, build safer spaces, and support local art and activism through direct funding and other resources. 

    Since its founding, Chances has sought to bring together Chicago’s varied LGBTIQ communities by organizing dance parties that welcome people of all gender expressions and racial identities. For the last six years, Chances has channeled profits from its parties into a biannual microgrant for local artists. In 2008, Chances launched the Critical Fierceness Grant, which awards $500 to Chicago-based artists and collectives who identify themselves or their work as queer. In 2012, Chances expanded the Critical Fierceness Grant to include the Mark Aguhar Memorial Grant, which funds projects by queer, feminine spectrum artists of color with $1,000 grants. Through this grassroots funding in addition to our robust performance programming, Chances has established itself as hub of queer artistic activity in Chicago for ten years running. 

    In Fall 2015, the PLATFORMS retrospective will showcase the artworks, herstory, and community-building processes of the Chances community over the last 10 years at several sites across Chicago. PLATFORMS seeks to expand the reach of a long-standing and multifaceted queer collective practice, in which the group can foster meaningful experiences for multiple publics to engage with queer art and politics.

  • The Critical Fierceness Grant is on hiatus!

    Dearest Communities -

    We are in the midst of coordinating a gigantic multisite series of events to unfold throughout September and October of this year. This is taking a huge amount of resources and energy, and as such, we are postponing our biannual microgranting program until further notice. We are hoping and aiming to be back in action with the free dollars for queer arts by this next Winter Cycle (January 2016). Stay tuned for updates! We love you and hope this isn't too much of a let down.

    Hugs, etc

    Team Chances



    A few important updates!

    We had our last monthly night at The Hideout in April. We will be returning to this beloved space and staff in September and October. In the meantime, The Lady Speedstick will keep the queer cuteness alive every first Saturday with Club Soda.

    We have moved Chances at Subterranean to the THIRD SATURDAY of every month! A $5 entry fee goes to support guest artists and DJs and keep the Chances operation alive. SubT will be providing ramps, making the space and upstairs restroom accessible via wheelchair.

    Off Chances is her good old sister self every SECOND TUESDAY at Danny's.

    See you on the floor baby boos!

    Team C/D

  • Congratulations to Po' Chop, Daviel Shy, Anna Martine Whitehead, Nicole Garneau, and caliXta: the 2015 Winter Cycle Critical Fierceness Grantees!

    We are thrilled to announce the Winter 2015 Critical Fierceness Grant & Mark Aguhar Memorial Grant winners! Check it out and keep an eye out for some magical stuff from this incredible lineup of makers and shakers!

    Po' Chop [Mark Aguhar Memorial Grant]

    Focusing on the upbringing of African American children and the conversations that occur between parent and child surrounding the topics of self-identity and racism, Po' Chop's untitled project aims to capture the complexities, challenges, and concerns that encompass raising a black child in America. Through a series of multimedia documented interviews, parents will be asked questions geared towards gaining a better understanding of the reality of raising a black child.  Upon completion, these interviews will serve as the backbone of a multimedia docudrama performance. [Photo credit: VAM]

    Daviel Shy [Critical Fierceness Grant]

    Daviel Shy's The Ladies Almanack is a feature film based on the 1928 novel by Djuna Barnes. Re-told through the theoretical framework of 1970’s French feminism, the film folds together the lives of the characters with the lives of the cast; which includes philosopher Hélène Cixous, poet Eileen Myles, and cult lesbian film star Guinevere Turner and other brilliant artists, poets and revolutionaries of our day.

    Anna Martine Whitehead [Critical Fierceness Grant]

    Memory Loser, choreographed by Anna Martine Whitehead and made in collaboration with Danny Giles and Kashif Powell, is a movement exploration through time and space to those dimensions so unperceivable to us that we only know to call them "darkness." The piece uses ritual, sport, hunger, and confusion to dance in and out of black life and death--finally asking: "Can you feel it?"

    Memory Loser makes its Chicago debut this year, and is included in the forthcoming Meanings and Makings of Queer Dance anthology, produced by Clare Croft and forthcoming from Oxford University Press.

    Nicole Garneau [Critical Fierceness Grant]

    Chances Dances’ Critical Fierceness grant supports Nicole Garneau’s publication of high quality images in the forthcoming book, UPRISING: Public Demonstrations of Revolutionary Practices. The book is the story of how thousands of volunteers in 8 U.S. and 5 international locations worked together to manifest the loving and visionary community we need for revolutionary times.

    caliXta / Isabel Buchanan-Arellano [Critical Fierceness Grant]

    From caliXta: "My project will be a mixed media visual installation, incorporating handmade art and projected visuals on multiple screens, that will explore some of my vision of what world peace might look like. My idea came about because I find that the concept of "world peace" has become very tired, yet is something I find that many crave or dream of in many ways. Thanks to the Critical Fierceness grant, I will be able to make a visual installation that translates some of my own vision(s) into tangible visuals, and transport and inspire people to see their dreams of a peaceful world."

    Its a true honor to be able to support these talented folks! Thanks to the Chances community for making it happen.

    With love,

    Team Chances (Aay, Jackie, Justin, Latham & Rita) & the Winter 2015 Critical Fierceness Board (Ally, Bryce, Erik, Ethan & Oli)


    "We are profoundly disappointed that the killer of our child will not face the consequence of his actions. While we understand that many others share our pain, we ask that you channel your frustration in ways that will make a positive change. We need to work together to fix the system that allowed this to happen.

    Join with us in our campaign to ensure that every police officer working the streets in this country wears a body camera.

    We respectfully ask that you please keep your protests peaceful. Answering violence with violence is not the appropriate reaction.

    Let's not just make noise, let's make a difference."

    --Lesley McSpadden and Michael Brown Sr.


    This drink is delicious and warming and supports the work we do! Bottomz up!!