Grand Canyon University (Phoenix, AZ)
Modern I (2016)
Estrella Mountian Community College (Avondale, AZ)
Ballet I & II (2015)
Modern I & II (2015-2016)
Introduction to Dance (2015-2016)
Jazz I & II (2016)
Arizona State University (Tempe, AZ)
Introduction to Dance (2014)
Introduction to Dance Online (2013)
Non-Linear Film Editing (2013)
Media for Dance (2012)
Isadora Master Class (2013)
Modern II (Fall 2013)
Modern I (Spring 2012 & Spring 2013)
Jazz I (Spring 2014)
Yoga/Pilates (Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013)
Urban I Master Class (Fall 2013)
Yanlai Dance Academy (Pittsburgh, PA)
Advanced Modern (Fall 2010-Spring 2011)
Advanced Tap (Fall 2010-Spring 2011)
Beginner Jazz (Fall 2010-Spring 2011)
Dance Space 304 (Pittsburgh, PA)
Adult Hip-Hop (Fall 2010-Spring 2011)
Adult Tap (Fall 2010)
Pittsburgh Dance Explosion (Pittsburgh, PA)
Advanced Modern Master Classes (Spring 2011)
Erie Dance Conservatory (Erie, PA)
Advanced Modern (Spring 2010)
Slippery Rock University (Slippery Rock, PA)
Ballet Tutor (Fall 2009-Spring 2010)
My goals as a dance educator are to help students find individual voices through creative exploration; develop a context for dance in the contemporary world by introducing examples of dance in the past, present, and future; and enhance elements of performance such as risk taking, focus, and a somatic awareness of internal and external environments. Infusing these concepts into movement classes makes the experience useful to the overall formation of the dancer by providing them with elements of technique that can be utilized in multiple dance forms. It is important to increase students’ creative, contextual, and performance capabilities in order to make dance exciting for the student.
My classroom emphasizes individual expression. Student individuality is developed and shared with the class through exercises that utilize improvisation, choreographic development, and dialogue. The first day with a class, I will often show examples of myself taking risks such as pushing myself so far in a movement that the outcome is unexpected, and then discuss somatically how the event is internalized. The students then follow my actions and share their own experiences either through dialogue or writing that connects their present experience with prior knowledge. This practice acknowledges that everyone has individual experiences, and also allows individual understanding to combine with contextualization to build a connection between personal experience and external events.
The history of a style, as well as the current professional practices of a style, builds context and purpose for classroom movement study. I use historical context in my classroom to provide students with a fuller understanding of their practice, and imply that there is more to movement than positioning limbs in space. For example, when I am teaching a class in House, I first have my students read about the evolution of the DJ and the development of the House Dance club scene so that they understand it is about finding a place to express yourself, but also a place to unite with others through music. As a facilitator, I find that supplying my students with background information supplies them with the tools to develop their own connection to history and the world they live in.
My classroom generates a connection between the internal and external environments of an individual. Somatic practices are used to develop an awareness of the body by focusing on breath, initiation, relationship to space, and an understanding of internal organ functions, specifically through practices of Laban Movement Analysis and Body Mind Centering. In a Modern II class, my students read chapters from books on body mind centering, and we discussed explored the concept of fluids. These ideas are then implemented into the approach of executing the movement material we have already been working on. There is an emphasis on accessing new understandings of the body internally, and being able to portray the connections externally in movement.
My classes provide tools that can be used to succeed in any scenario, especially in dance training and performance post-education. The class is engaging, and the students learn to approach every movement as though it is a performance. Class time becomes used as an exploratory rehearsal that places an emphasis on knowledge, communication, risk taking, and exploration.