OhioDance inclusively supports the diverse and vibrant practice of dance of all cultures and for all capabilities.

Guest Artists and Faculty Presenter Bios

2023 OhioDance Festival
April 28-April 30


Save the Date

OhioDance Festival
Friday, April 28- Sunday, April 30, 2023
Co-Sponsored by The Ohio State University of Dance


Guest Artist 2023

Ananya Chatterjea’s work brings together Contemporary Dance, social justice choreography, and healing justice. She is Artistic Director of Ananya Dance Theatre, a dance company of BIPOC femmes, and co-founder of the Shawngr?m Institute for Performance and Social Justice. She is a 2011 Guggenheim Choreography Fellow, 2016, Joyce Award recipient, 2018 UBW Choreographic Center Fellow, 2019 Dance/USA Artist Fellow, the 2021 A. P. Andersen Award and 2012 and 2021 McKnight Choreography Fellowships. She is currently developing Nün Gher?o, salt water stories, with the support of a creative residency at Jacob’s Pillow. Her second book, Heat and Alterity in Contemporary Dance: South-South Choreographies was published in 2020 (Palgrave McMillan). A co-edited anthology, Dancing Transnational Feminisms: Ananya Dance Theatre and the Art of Social Justice was published in 2022 (Univ. of Washington Press). She teaches Dance Studies courses such as Choreographing Social Justice, and Contemporary Practice at the University of Minnesota.

2023 Presenters coming in January 2023

Presenters from 2022

McKenzie Beaverson: McKenzie Beaverson trained at Toledo Ballet. She has performed with Verb Ballets, and in work by Kora Radella. McKenzie danced with The Dancing Wheels Company in 2016-2017, Atlantaa?€TMs, and founder of The Modern Atlanta Dance Festival, Full Radius Dance. McKenzie is currently with The Dancing Wheels Company continuing her training and performing.

Alice Blumenfeld: Alice Blumenfeld is the founder and artistic director of ABREPASO flamenco. Her recognitions include an Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award for Choreography (FY20), a YoungArts Silver winner, and a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts. She’s a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts and a Fulbright Grant recipient in dance. She toured nationally with Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana. She is currently an Assistant Lecturer at the University of Akron and part-time faculty at Cleveland State University.

Eugene Braig: Eugene Braig, Program Director, Aquatic Ecosystems Extension, Ohio State University. Eugene is charged with aquatic programming for the public as well as classroom teaching, research. Eugene holds leadership positions in several professional societies and advisories in- cluding – the North American Lake Management Society, the Ohio Biological Survey, the Olentangy State Scenic River Advisory Council, the Water Management Association of Ohio, ODNR’s Aquatic Invasive Species Advisory Committee, Ohio Biological Survey, The Ameri- can Fisheries Society, International Association for Great Lakes Research, North American Native Fishes Association, and the Mississippi River Basin Panel of the National Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force. He intends to continue to work for sustained and sustainable aquatic resources . . . and pick up some musical gigs on the side.

Kenneth Brown: Kenneth Brown is a veteran dance performer, choreographer, and educator with experience in a wide variety of genres including hip-hop, jazz, musical theater, lyrical, and contemporary. He has, over nearly 20 years, cultivated a style of instruction that is emotion and expression forward to help cultivate meaning and artistry in movement.

Loren Bucek, PhD: Loren is Project Director of Global Water Dances Columbus. She co-produced numerous national and state conferences and festivals – National Dance Education Organization, Dancing in the Millennium, Riverside Church Dance Festival, Con- gress on Research in Dance and the OhioDance Festival. Loren is the recipient of OhioDance’s Award for Dance Educator of the Year. She is co-author of National, Ohio and NYS K12 Dance Standards and author of scholarly research, juried articles and books for and by children.

Jess Cavender: OhioDance Media Manager, VDC Editor and Collections Coordinator, B.S. Electronic Media Communications, M.F.A. Dance and Technology, OSU

Padma Chebrolu: Padma Chebrolu is the founder and artistic director of Cultural Centre of India. She has a degree in dance from India and has deep expertise in various dance styles. She is a teaching artist affiliated with Ohio Arts Council and Cincinnati Arts Association. Padma is the recipient of 2021 Ohio Arts Council Heritage Arts Fellowship and a prolific speaker.

Mimi Chenfeld: Mimi Chenfeld MA in Elementary Ed. the University of New York. a teacher, writer and educational consultant, has led the OSU Hillel Folk Dance programs since moving with her family from New York to Columbus in 1970. On their own, to- gether and with the Hillel Group, Mimi and Marlene have danced with and for thousands of people through the years. Marlene Robbins and Mimi Chenfeld have danced together for many years.

Susan Chess: Susan Chess is Music Supervisor at The Ohio State University (OSU Dance) received her BMusEd, MA, and Ph.D. in Music Education from OSU. She has been on the music faculty for the Summer Institute for Gifted and Talented Students in the Arts, and for Rio Grande University. Ms. Chess has played for The Martha Graham Company, Dance Theater of Harlem, Columbus Merce Cunningham Company, Bebe Miller, Mark Morris, the Bolshoi, and many more. She received her Certification in Dalcroze Eurhythmics from Carnegie Mellon in 1999 and has worked as a Digital Editor. She continues to serve as an adjunct accompanist for the BalletMet. Ms Chess received the Outstanding Staff Award for her service at OSU and per- formed for TEDxOhioStateUniversity with dancer Joshua Manculich.

Alesondra (Alex) Christmas: Alesondra (Alex) Christmas is a PhD Candidate in Dance Studies at Ohio State. Her research interests surround Racial Battle Fatigue, Black Women Dancers, and Dance in the Academy. See Alex’s website for more information alesondrachrist- mas.wixsite.com/dance.

Dennis Clement: Dennis Clement, Office of Environmental Education, Ohio EPA (Ohio Environmental Protection Agency). The Ohio EPA is responsible for protecting the environment and public health by ensuring compliance with environmental laws. Dennis is the Ohio Project WET State Coordinator which designs and implements educational programming to teach people to understand and value water, promoting water conservation and protection for all. Dennis is a carded equine judge for the American Buckskin Registry Association, International Buck- skin Horse Association, Pinto Horse Association and The Ponies of America. He is also certified 4-H Equine Judge in Ohio and Michigan.

Donna S. Collins: Donna S. Collins serves as the executive director of the Ohio Arts Council (OAC) a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Collins brings more than 30 years of experience in leading a state agency and statewide non-profit organizations, demonstrating consistent success and solid results that impact policy, education, economic development, and arts and culture. John R. Kasich, Governor of the State of Ohio, inducted Collins into the Association of Ohio Commodores whose mission is to assist the State of Ohio in its advancement in all areas contributing to the economic growth and development of the State, and the greater prosperity of its citizens. At the national level Collins is an elected Executive Board member of the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA).

Amanda Erin Comstock: Amanda Erin Comstock is a registered Somatic Movement Educator (rSME) through the School of Body-Mind Center- ing®. Her approach to movement works from the inside out, prioritizing embodiment and self-awareness as the foundation for all movement and explorations of environment.

Cassia Cramer: Cassia Cramer, a Columbus, Ohio native, is a performing artist, Dance instructor, choreographer, entrepreneur, and the director of a 501(c)3 dance company. Ms. Cramer attended Point Park University where she exclusively studied the performing arts with a concentration in modern dance. Ms. Cramer also holds a Master’s in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance.

Jane D’Angelo: OhioDance Executive Director; VDC Project Director, B.S. Business Administration, Northeastern University, CSS Administration & Management, Harvard University

Geraldine P. Dapul, MD: Providers from The Cleveland Clinic who specialize in the treatment and care of the dancer patient. We work closely with the unique needs of performing artists.

Megan Davis Bushway: VDC and OhioDance videographer, B.A. Art Therapy & Dance, Springfield College, M.F.A. Dance, OSU

Cameron Dedrick: Cameron Dedrick started his teaching career in 2003. He teaches 3D Foundations, 2D Foundations, Drawing Funda- mentals, Printmaking, Sculpture, and Media Arts at Ashland High School. Previous to his high school career, he taught Elementary Art for 15 years. He also serves as Assistant Marching Band Director at AHS and District Technology Coach. In 2021, Mr. Dedrick was selected as a featured clinician at the Ohio Music Education Association State Conference, where he presented a clinic on utilizing Technology in the Fine Arts classroom. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Art Education from Ashland University with concentrations in Graphic Design and Printmaking, and a Master of Arts in Educational Technology from Baldwin-Wallace College. In his undergraduate program, Mr. Dedrick was heavily involved in the music department, participating in Marching Band, Concert Band, University Choir, and Chamber Singers.

Trevor Downey: Trevor Downey started dancing at the age of 4 and trained at a dance studio in Cincinnati. After High School he moved to NYC where he danced on Broadway for 15 years. Back in Ohio, he teaches and choreographs.

Kenny Eaddy: Kenny Eaddy, known as K. Daniel, is a singer/songwriter, dancer, and musical theatre actor. He has been a company dancer with Thiossane Institute for six years. In 2019, he traveled to Senegal and The Gambia and collaborated in an international exchange with sister company Bakalama Danse to further his knowledge of dance, language, and culture.

Ambre Emory-Maier: Ambre Emory-Maier, Former Director of Education, Equity and Community Engagement and BalletMet 2 Associate Director, Ambre completed her MFA in Choreography and Performance at The Ohio State University and MA in Dance Reconstruction and Directing from City University of New York. She has worked for Charlotte Ballet, the University of Hartford and Hartford Ballet and uses Labanotation to re-stage works.

M. Candace Feck (PhD): VDC Oral Historian, Faculty Emerita in Dance, The Ohio State University,
B.A. Cultural Anthropology; M.A. in Dance; Ph.D. Art Education

Amy Jones Gibbons: Amy Jones Gibbons is the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company (DCDC) Artist in Residence for Theatre, Dance, and Performance Technology Program at The University of Dayton. Amy danced with DCDC for eight seasons. She is director of The Onyx Contemporary Dance Company and the co-director of The UD Dance Ensemble. Amy is on faculty at MVDC and Dance Expressions and has created choreography for numerous studios, companies, entertainment agencies, and universities in the Midwest.

Jarrod Hartzler: Jarrod Hartzler has served as the Executive Director of the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education since September, 2019. Prior to that position he was the Executive and Artistic Director of Tuesday Musical Association in Akron Ohio. He has coordinated community arts and education programs and worked to establish partnerships with schools and other arts and community organizations all around the state of Ohio. A Wooster native and graduate of The College of Wooster, Jarrod has worked as a not-for-profit arts manager and arts educator at both the local community and state-wide levels. He has worked at Wayne Center for the Arts in Wooster, the Delaware County Cultural Arts Center in Dela- ware, Ohio, and served as Co-Executive Director of VSA arts of Ohio in Columbus. Jarrod has participated in education programs of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. He was a 2008 fellow in the Kennedy Center’s Arts Management Institute where he studied with Kennedy Center President Michael Kaiser.

Aimee Heslop: Aimee Heslop received her BFA in dance at Ohio State University. She moved to San Francisco to further her career in dance education and performance before receiving her Doctorate in Physical Therapy from Rosalind Franklin University in Chicago. Aimee specializes in treating the performing arts population and has worked with Joffrey Ballet Academy, A&A Ballet, and Columbia College Dance. She currently works at Nationwide Children’s treating dancers.

Julius Eclypse Jenkins: Julius Eclypse Jenkins is a street style dance professional from Cincinnati and has been engaged in the street dance world for 20 years. While his primary focus is Robotic animation, he has a working knowledge of the most popular street dances of Hip-Hop, Breaking, Popping, Locking, House and Krump. Eclypse has performed with a variety of artists like Krs- One, Mr.Carmack, Lupe Fiasco, Herobust, Flux Pavilion and many others. He is the founder of Heroes Rise Street dance battle and performance group, and most recently, Cincinnati’s first Street Dance Academy program. He is a teaching artist at Cincinnati Ballet and Adjunct Instructor at The University of Cincinnati-CCM. Eclypse is passionate about street dance culture and is always open to opportunities to share his passion with others. Contact/social media Email: heroesriseforever@gmail.com Website: www.Heroesrisecincinnati.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/heroesrisealways IG @heroes_rise_always @tmrobots Youtube:https://youtube.com/channel/UCrz_tSND9HQx_UA18BYZNhQ

Gregory King: Gregory King received his MFA in Choreographic Practice and Theory from Southern Methodist University and has per- formed with The Washington Ballet, Erick Hawkins Dance Company, and Disney’s The Lion King on Broadway. King was recently nominated for a Governor Award for the Arts in Ohio, is an associate professor of dance at Kent State Univer- sity, and the artistic director of the Kent Dance Ensemble.

Ishmael Konney: Ismael is an interdisciplinary Ghanaian artist born and raised in La which is one of the major towns in Accra, the capital of the country. He had his undergraduate degree in Theater Arts at University of Education, Winneba and his M.A degree in International Studies at Ohio University. He is currently a second year MFA candi- date in Dance at The Ohio State University.

Marty Kral: Marty Kral is the Director of Bands and Music Department Chair for Ashland High School. He directs the High School Bands including the Symphonic, Concert, and Marching Bands. He also teaches HS guitar and music technology courses and directs the Middle School Bands for grades 6-8. Mr. Kral has completed all levels of the National Association for Music Education Teaching Guitar Workshops. He holds a Bachelor of Music in Education from Ashland University, Master of Arts in Teaching and Learning from Nova Southeastern University and Teacher Leadership Endorsement from Concordia University. Mr. Kral has Master Teacher status with the district, and holds a Lead Professional Teaching Li- cense: the top licensure available for educators in the state of Ohio. He has a K-12 Music Licensure as well as a Teacher Leadership Endorsement.

Kathryn Nusa Logan: Kathryn Nusa Logan is an interdisciplinary artist who utilizes experimental art practices to imagine new futures through themes of perspective, lineage, and environment. Her primary research is in integrated screendance works that engage in somatic-based practices of interacting with cameras and holistically consider the camera in the making process.

Dawn Lorring PT, M.Ed, MPT: Providers from The Cleveland Clinic who specialize in the treatment and care of the dancer patient. We work closely with the unique needs of performing artists.With the Covid pandemic altering our daily routines, occupation and affecting our mental health, self-care and destressing techniques have become a priority and necessity. We will discuss management strategies to cope with these challenges as well as discuss optimal rest and recuperation that are vital to the health and well-being of a dancer.

Dr. Douglas J. Marrah: Dr. Douglas J. Marrah is the Superintendent of Ashland City Schools and holds Degrees from The Ohio State University, Florida Institute of Technology, and Ashland University. During his career Dr. Marrah has taught in Ohio and Florida. He has taught students at all levels and served as an Elementary Principal and Superintendent of Minerva Local Schools prior to becoming Superintendent of Ashland City Schools. Dr. Marrah is proud to be a part of the Ashland community and considers himself fortunate to serve the children of Ashland as the Superintendent. Dr. Marrah enjoys listening to music and performing music at home or with his friends.

Alia Simon Montijo: Alia Simon Montijo Alia Graduated from Ohio State University – BFA and Jacksonville University – MFA. She is an inter- nationally-recognized dance artist that established a professional dance company in 2014 followed by a dance school in 2017. Alia is the recipient of the Denman Undergraduate Research Award and the American Association of Univer- sity Women: Career Development Scholarship. She is currently researching possible correlations between subatomic behavior and macro social choreographies.

Michael J. Morris: Michael J. Morris is an artist, astrologer, tarot reader, writer, educator, and facilitator. They hold a PhD in Dance Studies from The Ohio State University, and they were a Visiting Assistant Professor at Denison University from 2015-2021 where they taught in Dance, Women’s and Gender Studies, Queer Studies, and Environmental Studies. Their choreo- graphic and performance work has been presented at universities, galleries, community spaces, theaters, bars and nightclubs, films, domestic spaces, and most recently the Wexner Center for the Arts. https://michaeljmorris.weebly.com/ https://www.michaeljmorris.co/

Brian Murphy: Brian Murphy has been a professional dancer for 26 years with acclaimed dance companies throughout the United States. Some of the companies he has been a member of are: Ohio Ballet, Verb Ballets, GroundWorks Dancetheater, Nashville Bal- let, Richmond Ballet, and BalletMet. Brian has served as a part-time faculty member at The University of Akron, and former Artistic Director at Wayne Center for the Arts.

Jennifer Muselin: Jennifer Muselin, Former Ohio Dance Theatre Principle and Soloist. Jennifer studied under the direction of Denise Gula for 15 years, thus perfecting her techniques in ballet, contemporary and jazz. As a child, Jennifer trained with former Cleveland Ballet affiliates, Dennis Nahat, Cynthia Graham, and Joseph Glowick. Jennifer is the Executive Artistic Director of contemporary ballet-based company, Ballet Legato, and Artistic Director of dance school, JAM Dance Academy.

Chloe Napoletano: Perennial Movement Group (PMG) is a Columbus based collective of older adult dancers directed by choreographers/ PC: Brian Kaiser community-based artists Chloe Napoletano and Sarah Ramey. Participating dancers take movement classes and engage in rehearsal and performance processes. PMG’s goals include developing the artistic voices of participating dancers and fostering community inside and outside of the collective.

Chaz O’Neil: Chaz O’Neil, Artist Programs/Percent for Art coordinator, Ohio Arts Council. Chaz O’Neil recently joined the Ohio Arts Council staff in 2021. Chaz received a BA from Otterbein University, 2006 and MFA from Bowling Green State University, 2013. He is a visual artist. Recent exhibitions include Greater Columbus 2020 at the Columbus Museum of Art, Terraform at ROYGBIV Gallery in 2021 and 934 Gallery in October 2022. O’Neil was the Museum & Gallery Assistant/Collection Registrar and taught foundations drawing courses at Otterbein Univer- sity. O’Neil was Assistant Director at the Ohio State Fair Fine Arts Exhibition. He taught at Shanghai Publishing Printing College in China. His residencies include El Bruc, Spain and Greater Columbus Arts Council’s Residency Exchange Program in Dresden, Germany.

Linda Pettit: Linda Pettit Environmental Education Specialist, Franklin Soil and Water Conservation District. Linda believes that partner- ships are the best way to share the important message of environmental awareness and stewardship and brings environ- mental understanding through interactive programs and collaborative programming. Linda is instrumental in the Central Ohio Region – Director, Environmental Education Council of Ohio (EECO); TREE: Terrific Resources for Environmental Education, WILD, Project Learning Tree, Project WET and the Leopold Education Project, former Conservation Education program at the Delaware Soil and Water Conservation District.

Robin Prichard: Robin Prichard is a dance artist, teacher, and scholar. She has taught anatomy and kinesiology to dancers for 20 years at both the graduate and undergraduate levels at places such as Smith College, University of Akron, and in Australia. She holds a BFA from SUNY Purchase and an MFA from UCLA. While she has many choreographic and scholarly interests, her greatest interest for dancers is that they are able to dance into their seventh or eighth de- cade of life.

Laura Puscas: Laura Puscas (CoMo Dance) graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a BBA in Marketing and a certificate in dance from Saint Mary’s College. Laura is co-founder and Director of Columbus Modern (CoMo) Dance Company. Career highlights include dancing as the soloist in CoMo’s restaging of Martha Graham’s “Heretic” in 2018 and choreo- graphing for Saint Mary’s College in 2020.

Sarah Ramey: Perennial Movement Group (PMG) is a Columbus based collective of older adult dancers directed by choreographers/ PC: Brian Kaiser community-based artists Chloe Napoletano and Sarah Ramey. Participating dancers take movement classes and engage in rehearsal and performance processes. PMG’s goals include developing the artistic voices of participating dancers and fostering community inside and outside of the collective.

Alysia Ramos: Alysia Ramos is a dancer, choreographer and teaching artist whose works seeks to forge connections among people while harnessing the power of the unfamiliar to transcend limitations and introduce new possibilities. She currently serves on the faculty of Oberlin College where she teaches contemporary practice, choreography and Samba. Together with Dylan Moffit she also leads the group Samba Joia/The Movement in Cleveland.

Marlene Robbins: Marlene Robbins graduated from OSU with her MA in Dance Education. She was the beloved Dance Teacher at Indi- anola Elementary School (Columbus Public Schools) for over twenty years before her recent retirement. She has been folk dancing most of her life.

Kathy Signorino: Kathleen Signorino, Artist Programs and Percent for Art Director at the Ohio Arts Council. Kathy Signorino oversees grant programs for artists that include the Individual Excellence Awards, Traditional Arts Apprenticeship program, and the Artist with Disabilities Access program. In addition, she oversees the Ohio Heritage Fellowship program and the Ohio Poet Laureate program. She is also in charge of the state’s Ohio Percent for Art that administers public art projects in state buildings that receive $4 million or more in capital funding. Additionally, she is responsible for multiple resources for artists including the Ohio Artist Registry, the Artist Opportunities Database, and the Ohio Folk and Traditional Arts website.

Mansee Singhi: Mansee Singhi is a Columbus, Ohio based Indian classical Kathak dance performer, choreographer and teacher.She has been a member of the United Nations Dance Council since 2012 and more recently joined the Ohio Teaching Artist Roster.Through the years, diverse influences have inspired her to immerse herself in pure dance, cross art form, collaborations, and innovative partnerships.

Jacquie Sochacki-Pittman: Jacquie Sochacki-Pittman is a dance researcher, choreographer and educator pursuing her MFA in Dance at The Ohio State University. She is a scholar and artist with an interdisciplinary interest in visual art. She is a positive men- tal health advocate, and her research explores how improvisation and reflection can help dancers process complex lived experiences and emotions.

Megan Tedrick: Megan Tedrick is a dance and Pilates educator from Columbus, Ohio. She teaches for BalletMet’s Education department and Academy as well as teaching adjunct for Ohio University. Megan earned her BFA in Dance from Ohio University and has returned to obtain her MA in Community Dance. She specializes in children’s dance, adult beginners, modern dance, and West African dance.

Dr. Lyndsey Vader: Lyndsey Vader holds a PhD in Dance Studies from The Ohio State University and an MFA in Dance from The College at Brockport. Her research examines the use of audience participation in immersive performances that imagine new ways of being together during these politically divisive times. For more information, visit lyndseyvader.wordpress.com.

Lorii Wallace: Lorii Wallace Studied Dance Therapy at The University of Toledo before heading to dance off Broadway in Seattle, WA. Upon returning to Ohio she formed Tapestry Performing Arts Company undertaking community productions for human trafficking, organ donation and other topics that stress our community. Lorii has written over 40 original productions.

Kerri Wilde: Kerri Wilde is a dancer, choreographer an educator. She holds a Bachelors of Education in Dance from University Toledo and a Master in Dance Therapy from Columbia College in Chicago. Kerri has taught at the University of Toledo, Toledo Ballet and Owens Community College. She created and developed dance curriculum for Ft. Meigs YMCA and Toledo School for the Arts.


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