Linda Caruso-Haviland is an Associate Professor at Bryn Mawr College and the founder and Director of the Dance Program, and the current Alice Carter Dickerman Chair for the Director of the Arts. Prior to her current roles at Bryn Mawr, she founded the dance program at SUNY/Westchester CC and taught in several colleges and universities. She also teaches in and directed Bryn Mawr College’s critical thinking and writing program for first year students and has received the College’s Rosalyn R. Schwartz teaching award. She received her undergraduate degree in dance from Adelphi University, continued studying technique in NYC, and went on to complete her doctorate in the areas of dance and philosophy at Temple University. She has performed with companies in New York and Philadelphia, principally with ZEROMOVING COMPANY under the direction of Hellmut Gottschild, and continues to dance and choreograph. Her professional activities include panel presentations, interdisciplinary arts collaborations, and projects focusing on mediating the multiple perspectives that arise from the observation of and writing about dance. Her scholarly research has included preserving the work of significant Philadelphia dance artists through oral histories and video documentation. Her recent writing projects include a focus on the rise of a professional class of dancers in turn of the century Philadelphia; the role of bodiedness in both historiography and the archive, including co-editing a book on Body as Archive;and investigating the concepts of restaging or reenacting including a three part essay commissioned by the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage two of which are now accessible on the web: Every Copy an Original: William Forsythe and his Restaged Ballets, and Resubstantiating the Dance: William Forsythe's Synchronous Objects
Madeline Cantor (Associate Director) received a BA from Barnard College and MFA from the University of Michigan. She performed and choreographed independently and as a member of Dance Conduit from 1980-89. She has been awarded grants for her choreography and has worked as a guest choreographer with professional, college and youth companies and community groups. At Bryn Mawr she teaches technique, composition, repertory, and a praxis course in arts teaching. She directs the Bryn Mawr Dance Outreach Project, a group which performs in Philadelphia schools, and is involved with reconstruction projects of historic modern dance. Outside of Bryn Mawr she directs Dance TAG (Teaching Artists Group), and serves on the national board of Dance and the Child International.
Dinita Alishia Askew (Princess Di) began her training in dance with Faye Snow at Franklin Learning Center High. She joined ELEONE's second company, was selected to participate in Philadanco's Summer Intensive Training Program, and went on to earn her B.F.A. at University of the Arts. She expanded her knowledge of hip-hop and funk styles and has been choreographing and teaching various age groups and levels, including children with special needs. She has worked with recording artists and as a dancer and actress with ILLSTYLE & PEACE PRODUCTIONS. She has performed with Ron Wood, Montazh, and Moncell Durden, and as Dance Captain and Rehearsal Master with RENNIEHARRIS PUREMOVEMENT, she danced and taught in Egypt, Palestine and Israel. Dinita has also taught elsewhere in the US and abroad, and regionally at University of the Arts, Koresh Dance Studio, Philadanco School of Dance Arts, and Philadelphia Dance Theater. She choreographed alone and in collaboration with Kyle “Just Sole” Clark is co-founder of Funky Sole Fundamentals.
Myra Bazell has been performing, creating dances and teaching nationally and abroad in Europe, South America and the Middle East. She graduated with a BFA from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and has taught Movement for Theater there. She is a sought after choreographer for theatrical productions; is a recipient of numerous grants or fellowships for her choreography; was selected by Philadelphia Magazine as an artist to watch and is a founding member of SCRAP PERFORMANCE GROUP. Myra also added a Masters in Social Work from Bryn Mawr College to her list of accomplishments. Myra has choreographed for both our Modern and Jazz Ensembles. (2013-14)
David Brick graduated from Wesleyan U. with a double major in Dance and English(with special emphasis on Gender issues). He is co-Artistic Director of HEADLONG DANCE THEATER, a critically acclaimed company that produces work in an environment of physical, intellectual, and choreographic collaboration. The company was awarded a ‘Bessie’ in NYC for their work and was listed in Philadelphia Magazine among its ’50 rising stars.’ Their work has been presented nationally and internationally, including Dance Theater Workshop (NYC), The Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, P.S. 122 (NYC), The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, and The Wilma Theater, among others, to a range of audiences. Prior to Headlong, David danced with the RICHARD BULL DANCE THEATER. David has guest taught and choreographed at numerous colleges and universities and has taught at Temple University and the University of the Arts. David is also a sign language interpreter. He has received a Pew Fellowship in the Arts, an Independence Fellowship, and, recently, a 2012 creative artist fellowship from the Japan-US Friendship Commission. He is also co-founder and Dean of the Headlong Performance Institute, an intensive Philadelphia semester in hybrid performance for which students can receive a full semester of undergraduate credit through Bryn Mawr College.
Karen Brown began her training with Ron Colton at the Augusta Ballet and performed for 22 years with DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM as a principal ballerina, noted for her dancing in several roles including DeMille's Fall River Legend for which she was listed among the NYT's top ten performances of the year. In 1995 she was appointed the Director of Education for the Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education and in 1997 founded Karenina, an organization that provides consultation and mentorship through all stages of career development for emerging and established artists and in 2006 was named Artistic Director of OAKLAND BALLET, a post she held for six years. In addition to her career as a dancer, she has certificates in both the ABT and Vaganova curricula and earned her BA in 2013. She has won several prestigious awards including a Mozart to Motown Arts Pioneer Award and a NYC "Bessie" award for performance and has been cited for her extensive work in teaching and community outreach.
Melissa Caterina Chisena started her dance studies with The New Paltz Ballet Theatre founded by Peter and Lisa Naumann, former dancers of New York City Ballet. She later danced and toured nationally with North Carolina Dance Theatre, under the direction of Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux and The Richmond Ballet, directed by Stoner Winslett . Currently residing in Philadelphia, PA, she has danced with several Philadelphia choreographers here and and is a member of the N.A.D.I.N.E Project, a choreographic collaborative company that creates work in Mystic, Connecticut. Melissa is the founder and artistic director of CHISENA DANZA and the producer of the Norristown DanceFest, An Evening of Duets, and the Philadelphia Youth Dance Fest. She is teaching our introductory course in Ballet.
KC Chun-Manning earned her BA from Trinity College. While simultaneously pursuing her M.F.A. in Dance from the University of Illinois she trained with master teachers in the Alexander technique and is a certified instructor. Her dance practice interweaves the Alexander Technique, developmental movement, somatics and release technique and is reciprocally influenced by her interest in how deep life experiences swim within the circuitry of our thoughts, impulses and stories we create for ourselves. She is Artistic Director of the collaboratively-driven pickup company, FRESH BLOOD presenting work regionally and in Colorado and NYC. She has performed with Susan Rethorst and Guillermo Ortega Tanus among others and is working collaboratively on a performance project with with Pasión y Arte Flamenco Co. She has won several awards for her choreography and has had work commissioned by colleges and performing arts centers. Since her arrival in Philadelphia in 2011 her teaching has ranged from working with cancer patients to teaching or making work for Temple, West Chester and Drexel Universities, ChiMAC studio, and the nEW Festival.
Kyle Clark (Just Sole) began dancing at the age of 9 at DeVe’s Christian School of the Performing Arts near Baltimore and moved on to training at Steps on Broadway in NYC. He graduated from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia where he trained in all forms but began seriously experimenting within the Tap genre. Adept in multiple forms of dance, he performed with Philadanco’s second company, with Eleone Dance Theatre, and became a core member of Rennie Harris Puremovement Hip Hop Theater Dance Company where he is also Rehearsal Director. Clark has performed with or in works by noted choreographers including Christopher Huggins, Gregory Hines, Rennie Harris, Zane Booker, Curt Haworth, and Bryan Sanders. He has performed and taught Hip Hop workshops regionally, nationally, and abroad. He is the co-founder and director of Funky Sole Fundamentals.
Victor Colón Raised in Puerto Rico, Victor's extensive background provides him knowledge of styles ranging from Salsa to Mambo to Ballroom and Hustle as well. Victor began his career performing with LUNA NEGRA, shortly after graduating from Penn State University with a B.S. in Engineering and shortly after became the director of and choreographe for Luna Negra and La Luna Dance Studio in Bensalem, PA. He has also taught or choreographed for or collaborated with Dance Crush in Vineland, NJ, Art In Motion and Living in Rhythmand has performed on TV and in local venues. He has earned recognition in the national salsa circuit winning the Philadelphia Salsa Congress 2006 and placing in the top 5 in both World and national Salsa Congresses.
Melanie Cotton started formal dance training at age four at the Ivy Leaf School and continued at the prestigious Freedom Theater School of Performing Arts where she studied acting, modern dance (Horton technique), West African (Umfundalai), jazz, and ballet. She danced and performed in the underground hip-hop scene before studying with pioneering hip-hop performers from the legendary group ELITE FORCE. She studied with Moncell Durden, Rennie Harris, and the creator of locking, Don “Campbell Lock” Campbell. Cotton earned her A.S. in communications theater at Community College of Philadelphia and served as resident choreographer there for theater productions directed by Dr. Ardencia Hall-Karambe. In 2003 she became a principal dancer and choreographer for Philadelphia’s all-female hip-hop dance crew, Montazh Performing Arts Company, where she continued her training in locking, waking, house, and Caribbean fusion. Ms. Cotton now works with RENNIE HARRIS PUREMOVEMENT, performing and teaching around the world. She is a youth facilitator and a teaching artist with “Moving Creations: Girls On The Move.”
Carrie Ellmore-Tallitsch received her BFA in dance from the University Of Cincinnati College - Conservatory of Music and while attending college performed with Dayton Contemporary Dance Company's apprentice company. She joined the Martha Graham Dance Company in 2002 and after her promotion to soloist danced lead roles in such classics as “ Lamentation,” “Appalachian Spring,” “Diversion of Angels,”” and “Cave the Heart. She has worked with other choregraphers and companies in NYC and Philadelphia and has performed her own work as well. She is also the co-founder of P.E.A.C.E. Community Garden in Jersey City and directs Big Sky Project, designed to integrate performance, visual arts, healing arts and the environment. (2031-14)
Nia Eubanks graduated from the University of the Arts and has performed and taught extensively. She danced most recently with URBAN BUSH WOMEN but has performed as well with Chuck Davis and the AFRICAN AMERICAN DANCE ENSEMBLE, PHILADANCO II, DUNYA WEST AFRICAN DANCE COMPANY, ALO BRASIL, and DANCE THEATER X. Nia is also a committed educator working with chldren and adults alike and she is an ordained minister and works with the New Hope Baptist Church, recently creating their Education Through the Arts program. Reverend Nia teaches African and Modern techniques and choreographs for the African Ensemble.
Meg Foley is a dance artist and the director of MOVING PARTS, a name ascribed to various dance- and performance-based acts that explore the materiality of dance and its relationship to form. Meg explores how art environments are made and tries to create elusive yet emotionally evocative performance experiences that straddle the fine line between focus and freedom. She is concerned with how somatic experience bumps up against visual experience - in seeing and in doing. She is a 2012 PEW Fellow in the Arts and a 2012 Independence Foundation Fellow. Her work has been presented by the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival, Thirdbird, Bowerbird, Mascher Space Cooperative, Little Berlin Gallery, Vox Populi Gallery, the Community Education Center, Cirque De Verre, Scripps College, and in Movement Research at the Judson Church. (2013-14)
Nora Gibson is a Philadelphia based dancer and choreographer, whose training spans
classical ballet to post-modern improvisation. Early training included attending Baltimore School for the Arts and ballet residencies with Jean-Pierre Bonnefous of NYCB, Chautauqua, and NCSA. She later graduated with a BFA from Tisch, at NYU, where she had the opportunity to perform in the works of Elisa Monte and Mark Morris . Nora studied improvisational forms with Daniel Lepkoff, Andrew Harwood, Nancy Stark-Smith, and KJ Holmes. She has performed with several companies and choreographers including the Ellicott City Ballet, PATH Dance Company, The Second Avenue Dance Company, Andrew Marcus, Olive Prince Dance, and Jeffrey Gunshol and is working in a special project with Lucinda Childs and Ty Boomershine to learn and perform various Childs' pieces from the 1970s, such as “Interior Drama” and "Melody Excerpt" and others. Nora has performed her own work throughout Philadelphia and in NYC at various downtown venues. Nora Gibson Performance Project was awarded a 2009-10 Artist in Residence with the nEW Festival in Philadelphia, the CEC New Edge Residency for 2009-10, and the Ellen Forman Memorial Award in 2011 to commission new work for Drexel University. Recently, Gibson was awarded a residency through DanceUSA/Philadelphia to work and study in Poland. (2013-14)
Yasmin Goodman trained extensively in gymnastics and in Shotokan Karate before turning to dance. She has studied at Temple University and with top area Jazz teachers and has taught and performed in the greater Philadelphia area for 20 years. She founded and directed YAZZU DANCE Co, was director at the Main Line YMCA and continues to design and conduct their Jazz Dance programs.
Corinne Karon has studied tap extensively and currently performs with and is assistant artistic director of the highly celebrated TAP TEAM TWO. She has also studied Irish step dancing in ireland. She has successfully tapped on every continent in the world, including Antarctica! Corinne also teaches on a regular basis at Rowan University, The University of the Arts, The Chester Valley Dance Academy, and Wissahickon Dance Academy.She is the founder and artistic director of Uniting Colleges Through Tap.
Katherine Kiefer Stark received her BA in dance in 2002 from Connecticut College and her MFA in Choreography in 2009 from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. She has presented her own work, set works, and taught in venues and universities in Philadelphia and throughout the US. She founded and is the artistic director of THE NAKED STARK, a Philadelphia- based contemporary dance company.
Dolores Luis studied Flamenco in Barcelona, Madrid and New York. Since 1986 she has been a performer with FLAMENCO OLE. She also teaches flamenco at the Arts League in Philadelphia and at Swarthmore College and works with gifted children in the Philadelphia School system. (2013-14)
Connie Majka has been studying, teaching and performing Hula for over thirty years. She has danced for numerous shows in Hawai’i and in the Philadelphia region. As a teacher, she cultivates a respect for the traditions of Hula, a respect for the Hawaiian people as keepers of the traditions, the Hawaiian language, and the “aina” (the land) where Hula originated. She currently teaches at ALOHA STYLE in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Linda Karash Mintzer studied with Thomas Cannon and with the PENNSYLVANIA BALLET and danced with the company from 1971 through 1982, interrupting her tenure to attend Harvard/Radcliffe for two years. She danced several leading roles with the company and after retirement worked there in public relations and special projects. She received a BA from NYU and also attended Drexel University's Nesbitt College of Design Arts. In addition to her immersion in the Balanchine style, she is a certified Vaganova instructor. Mintzer is also a faculty member at the highly regarded Pennsylvania Academy of Dance in Narberth.
Chandra Moss -Thorne began her studies at the school of the Cleveland ballet and earned her BA in dance pedagogy from Butler University. Chandra dance with the CINCINNATI BALLET, including principal roles, and has performed as well as with The DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM and with the Washington and Cincinnati Operas. She was on the instructional staff at the Cincinnati Ballet and at Goucher College and has taught as a guest artist at other colleges and universities. She is also a certified Pilates instructor.
Shannon Murphy graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BA in Dance from Point Park University and, while pursuing her performance career, continued her investigations into the somatic and movement healing arts. She is currently a level three Franklin Method Educator, one of a select few in the United States and Murphy. She was on the faculty of Pittsburgh Ballet theater and Point Park College, has been guest artist at several Philadelphia universities or colleges and is on the instructional staff at University of the Arts. Her danceworks have been presented at multiple venues in the US and in Paris and she was also selected as a New Edge Resident Artist at the CEC in Philadelphia. She was recently awarded one of five prestigious Live Arts Brewery (LAB) residency choreographic fellowships to produce a work for Live Arts' 2013 season. Shannon has danced for Peggy Baker, Robert Battle and Wally Cardona and collaborated with noted Philadelphia choreographers. Shannon is also Co-director of idiosynCrazy productions, an adventurous and award winning dance collective. In addition to her work in contemporary dance, Shannon has choreographed several musicals ranging from Carousel to Urinetown.
Olive Prince is a dancer, choreographer, and educator who completed her Master's in Fine Arts in Dance and Choreography at Temple University in 2005. She has danced professionally in Philadelphia with many leading dance companies including Group Motion Multimedia Dance Company, Kun Yang Lin/Dancers and Merian Soto Performance Practice. Prince is the artistic director of OLIVE PRINCE DANCE where she focuses on contemporary choreography that explodes with physicality, detail, gestures, and dynamic movement patterning. She has been commissioned to make both stage and site specific work for other dance companies as well, was awared a two year choreographer's residency with the Susan Hess Choreographer's Group and was selected as a nEW Festival artist in Philadelphia for two consecutive years. In addition to Philadelphia performance venues, her work has been presented at the International Contemporary Dance Conference, New Dance Alliance's Performance Mix Joyce Soho, and the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. Prince also teaches at Drexel University.
Meredith Rainey began dancing at 15 in his hometown of Fort Lauderdale. In 1985 he joined the MILWAUKEE BALLET and in 1987 he was asked to join the newly formed PENNSYLVANIA BALLET-MILWAUKEE BALLET. He remained with the PENNSYLVANIA BALLET dancing as a soloist with the company. He was also a demi-soloist with the DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM in 1997. Meredith has performed throughout the US, Europe and South America. His repertoire includes roles in the works of choreographers ranging from George Balanchine to Alvin Ailey to William Forsythe. He has premiered original works by numerous choreographers including David Parsons, Lynne Taylor-Corbett, Jorma Elo, Ib Anderson and Matthew Neenan. He has been awarded numerous support grants for his choreographic work as well as commissions from several ballet and modern companies. He is a founding choreographer and yearly contributor to 'Shut Up & Dance,' created by the dancers of the Pennsylvania Ballet to benefit MANNA, an organization that feeds and cares for home-bound HIV and AIDS patients. He co-founded and co-directed CARBON DANCE THEATRE and is now an independent choreographer.
Ramaa Ramesh began studying classical Indian dance at the age of 6 and her principal mentor was the reknowned artist of the Bharathanatyam style, Citra Visweswaran. She has been performing since the age of 12 and has danced in India, Europe, the middle East, and the US. She pursued her doctoral studies at Temple University and she presently directs the NARDHANA ACADEMY OF DANCE. Ms. Ramesh will be teaching an introduction to Bharathanatyam.
Donna Reinhart & Bob Butryn were co-directors of SWINGCONNECTION DANCE COMPANY for several years and they have continued teaching and performing Lindy, Swing and other contemporary and historical social forms together and with other partners. They placed in many competitions along the East Coast and teach in various venues throughout the city. Donna continues with Swingconnections and her day job-- teaching high school chemistry, while Bob tours his dance music program, Crazy Rhythm, Fancy Feet and is also a sought after musician in the Philadelphia area.
Toni Shapiro-Phim is a dance ethnologist with a specialization in the performing arts of Southeast Asia. She received her Ph.D in cultural anthropology from Cornell University in 1994. Her dissertation, "Dance and the Spirit of Cambodia," recent books (Dance in Cambodia with Ashley Thompson and Dance, Human Rights and Social Justice co-edited with Naomi Jackson) and other publications focus on the history and cultural context of dance around the world, particularly in relation to violence and gender concerns. At Philadelphia Folklore (PFP) project for six years, and at Khmer Arts in Cambodia for three, she designed and implemented public arts, educational and documentation programs in diverse settings. She has held teaching and research appointments at the University of California-Berkeley, San Jose State University, Yale and Mills College, and has served as a consultant for the Asia Society, Japan Foundation, New England Folklife Project and other organizations. She is currently back at PFP as a program specialist. Dr. Phim-Shapiro has taught Dance, Migration and Exile and Anthropology of Dance, both cross-listed with the Anthropology Department. (2013-14)
Michelle Stortz is a Texas native who received her BFA in Dance from the University of Texas at Austin before migrating to San Francisco where she worked both collaboratively and independently as producer, performer and choreographer for eleven years. Her work has graced stages in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New Orleans and Austin, Italy and Singapore where she did a year long residency--choreographing, teaching and performing. She received her MFA in 2005 from Ohio State University. She is currently teaching and performing and is the Artistic Director of RING DANCE THEATRE.
Laura Vriend earned her B.A. with a double major in Dance and Anthropology from Bryn Mawr and her Ph.D. in Critical Dance Studies
at the University of California, Riverside. Her research areas include looking at relationships between social and critical theories
of space and choreographic uses and ideas of space in the site-based
choreographic works as they perform discourses of spatiality and
urbanism, and the the role of choreographic
thinking in a liberal arts education. Vriend has presented her research
at conferences in Los Angeles, Surrey (England), Toronto, and
Philadelphia. She has also taught dance composition and performance
theory at Bryn Mawr College, has shown work or performed at UCR and Bryn Mawr and in San Antonio and Philadelphia, works as dramaturge for
Philadelphia-based company <fidget>, and writes for thINKingDANCE.