A caucasian genderqueer man with medium length brown hair, and brown eyes smiling slightly and fixed upon the viewer, bare chest and wearing a gold sequin bolero and silver sequin leggings, seated in front of a wall of curtains.

Pioneer Winter

Miami, FL

Pioneer Winter is a Miami-based choreographer and artistic director of Pioneer Winter Collective, an intergenerational and physically integrated dance-theatre company, rooted in social practice and community, queer visibility and beauty beyond the mainstream. Recognized in Dance Magazine‘s “25 to Watch,” Pioneer Winter’s work democratizes performance in public spaces, museums and galleries, stage, and film. A major objective continues to be expanding the definition of all that dance is and can be so that all bodies survive, thrive, and are witnessed in spite of constant erasure based upon race, body type, age, and ability – this goes for both the artists as well as the audience. Winter has been commissioned by Miami Theater Center, Karen Peterson and Dancers, Tigertail Productions, Jacksonville Dance Theatre, FundArte, and the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, where Winter is the Center’s first Artist-in-Resident collaboration in a decade. Pioneer Winter’s work is supported by local, state, and foundation grants and fellowships. Most recently, PWC premiered Birds of Paradise in September 2021, commissioned by the Arsht Center and supported by NEFA’s National Dance Project Award, MAP Fund, and the Knight Foundation. Winter earned a Masters in Public Health and Epidemiology from Florida International University’s Stempel College of Public Health in 2009 and Master of Fine Arts in Choreography from Jacksonville University/White Oak in 2016. An extension of his creative practice, Winter has curated and directed ScreenDance Miami Festival since 2017, presented by Miami Light Project; Winter’s own films screen internationally. Winter serves as Assistant Teaching Professor in the Honors College and College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts at Florida International University. Winter is affiliated faculty at the Center for Humanities in an Urban Environment (CHUE) and an inaugural Fellow in the Miami Studies Program.


DJ Apollo

Pioneer Winter is a Miami-based choreographer and interdisciplinary artist, whose work is rooted in collaboration, community, queer visibility, and seeking beauty beyond the mainstream.

Artist Bio

DJ Apollo reimagines the Greek myth of Apollo and the subsequent 20th-century neoclassical ballet, composed by Stravinsky and choreographed by Balanchine, as a story of a fallen idol who has traded the lyre for vinyl. Set in 1987 at the height of the AIDS crisis, this immersive, physical theater work situates a now-faded, graying Apollo as an exiled disc jockey, spinning at the only club that will still have him—a leather bar in Hades. A far cry from entertaining circuit queens and being worshiped from atop Mount Olympus, Apollo reckons with his vulnerability and fears of irrelevance, and ultimately reinvents himself, cast in studded black leather. DJ Apollo will be generated through the memories and oral histories of queer elders in the South Florida community, confronting ageism, loss, and isolation toward the hope of rebirth.

Award Year

In Progress