I hail from the Wild, Wild West, where I had trouble cutting on the dotted black line, so I read Steinbeck and became a modern dancer instead. I believe dance matters. And I’d like to persuade you likewise, and wordwise. I’ve taught for nineteen years, self-produced site-specific choreography for ten years, and added up the importance of dance times infinity, but I hate math. I do, however, love big movement in small spaces. I make dance that brawls, balls, and begets the sort of unfurled truths you want to hold. May I have the next dance with you?
I trained at Juline School of Dance and Gretchen Vogelzang’s Central West Ballet in Modesto, California before attending SUNY Purchase’s Conservatory of Dance and Sociology Departments. I am currently in my last year of MFA graduate studies at the University of Maryland. I have lived and danced in Berlin and New York, studied in the international dance centers of Brussels, Budapest, and Tel Aviv, as well as continued professional training at Juilliard, American Dance Festival, Tanz im August, Impulstanz, Doug Varone and Dancers, David Dorfman Dance, Ponderosa, and MELT. My performance career spans principal roles with renowned choreographers to collective work with emerging artists including: Donald McKayle, Doug Varone, Ohad Naharin, Paul Taylor, Nicholas Leichter, Kevin Wynn, Mark Morris, Clint Lutes, alex/xan: the meridian movement, Janessa Clark/KILTERBOX, and Nora Petroliunas. I was a founding member and danced for ten years in Nelly van Bommel’s noa dance in New York City. I also danced on Sam Bassett and Noah Baumbach film sets until I heard Virginia is for Lovers, and my relocation there introduced me to the DC Dance community, where I have lovingly navigated the country’s worst traffic to drive to rehearsals for Tzveta Kassabova, Stephanie Miracle, Sharon Mansur, Robin Neveu Brown, and Colette Krogol and Matthew Reeves’ Orange Grove Dance.
As a daughter of sweater vest and bowties, I am most at home teaching barefoot in a dance studio. My recent positions, beyond first through fifth, include adjunct faculty at Montgomery Community College, founder of Metropolitan Moves – a program that brings modern dance and choreographic tools to underserved populations in Northern Virginia, and Instructor of Record at the University of Maryland. I am an Associate Director of Greater Washington Dance Center in Reston, VA where I teach modern, ballet, choreography, and improvisation with a curriculum committed to passion, character, and intelligent exploration.
I am a 2009 Brooklyn Arts Council Regrant Recipient for my site-specific bookstore work Hold This Deep for Safe. Recent commissions include the 2015 Dance Metro DC Choreographers’ Commission of Woodbind. It Courses and the Kennedy Center’s 2016 Local Dance Commissioning Project for the politically charged Skirt the Wall.
My company Heart Stück Bernie is usually found performing in something like a stairwell, while pushing play on something like a boom box. HSB has recently made its proscenium debuts in the Metropolitan DC area at Dance Place, The Clarice, and Sidney Harman Hall. We just premiered Skirt the Wall a site-specific and proscenium boundary-pushing project at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.