Duluth MN

Mar 8 - 11, 2017

Welcome to the American College Dance Association 2017 North-Central Region Conference - Moving Bodies

The University of Minnesota Duluth [UMD] Department of Theatre is very excited to host this event.  We invite you to join us for an invigorating celebration of dance in higher education with a full menu of classes in a variety of forms, scholarly research presentations, round table discussions, opportunities for student and faculty exchanges in and out of the studio, adjudication and informal concerts, feedback sessions and a Gala Concert.  We are planning a few special site specific sessions to take advantage of Duluth's natural beauty (more information on this, and how to dress for it, will be coming!) as well as several special classes and workshops, including a session in our MMAD (Motion and Media Across Disciplines) Lab.

With our conference theme, "Moving Bodies", we invite our attendees to think not only about how we move, but about how we are moved by dance - kinesthetically, emotionally, intellectually - both as participants and as audience members.  We dance for many reasons and in many contexts, but what they all have in common is the power of movement to express and to connect us to ourselves, our communities, and the world around us.

For those of you who will first-time visitors to our area, Duluth is located at the western tip of Lake Superior, and our campus sits among the neighborhoods just up 'over the hill' from the water's edge. While sometimes called the San Francisco of the Middle Coast - Duluth is really a city unlike others: with its miles of trails within city limits, dozens of parks, and next to the largest fresh water lake in the world - this is quite the city to behold.  In addition to its physical beauty, it is a thriving community where art and theatre abound and seven colleges serve their students and their community.


Enjoy your time in Duluth and have fun at #ACDA2017 

#MovingBodies2017 #DanceYourBootyOff

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Andrew Vaca

Professor, CSU Long Beach

Bio: Andy Vaca, Department Chair of Dance at CSU Long Beach, is President of ACDA.  In addition to dancing for the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, Jazzworks-A Dance Company, Keith Johnson/Dancers, and Bodytalk, and making over 20 concert dance pieces at CSULB, Andy is well-known as a choreographer for professional dance teams for the NBA and NFL and is on faculty for Pro Action Dance, the leader in pro dance team choreography. Andy has choreographed nationally televised halftime shows for the Detroit Lions and the NFL Pro Bowl, and is a featured teacher for the LA Music Center’s Dance Downtown program.

Maria Gillespie

Assistant Professor, UW-Milwaukee

Bio: Maria Gillespie is a choreographer, improviser, and dance educator. She holds degrees from UCLA and SUNY Purchase. Gillespie founded Oni Dance in 2005 and was named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch". Gillespie's choreography has been presented at venues, universities, and festivals nationally and internationally. Her international teaching and performing have taken her to Mexico, Japan, and China. She has taught at UCLA, CalArts, Loyola Marymount, CalState University Long Beach, & University of Iowa. She is Assistant Professor at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her current research includes improvisation performances with Hyperlocal MKE, exploring new media and embodiment, and a variety of somatic and movement re-education modalities.

Erinn Liebhard

Winona State University

Bio: Erinn Liebhard (MFA University of Colorado Boulder, BFA University of Minnesota) is a dance artist making opportunities to experience the embodiment of music. She's Adjunct Faculty at Winona State University and a Teaching Artist for the Cowles Center for Dance, and the Artistic Director of jazz and American vernacular dance support organization Rhythmically Speaking. Currently a member of Afro-Brazilian contemporary company Contempo  Physical Dance, her performance experience varies from working with hip hop artist Rennie Harris to the Wild Goose Chase Cloggers to getting her comedy on playing “Nerdette” for St. Paul Saints Baseball’s Entertainment Team. erinnliebhard.com.

Sarah Cashmore

CSU Dominguez Hills

Bio: Sarah Cashmore is originally from San Diego where she grew up dancing at a local studio.  She received her B.A. in Dance from San Jose State University where she also began professional work.  She moved to Los Angeles and joined a top professional belly dance company, performing regularly.  In 2010 she received her M.F.A in Dance from UC Irvine.  Currently she teaches and choreographs at several colleges and a studio.  Sarah is also on the Board of Directors for ACDA, Baja region.  She is also a current member of the contemporary dance company, Delineation.

Sarah Hauss

Gustavus Adolphus College

Bio: Sarah Hauss is a choreographer, dancer, and teacher who has been living and working in the Twin Cities for over 20 years.  She has a BA in dance from the University of Oregon and an MFA in dance from the University of Colorado.  She is also a licensed K-12 Dance Educator and has great interest in interdisciplinary learning.  She has danced and choreographed in New York, California, and Oregon as well.  Her work has been supported over the years by Red Eye Collaborations, the McKnight Foundation, the Jerome Foundation, and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council.  She was a founding member of Paula Mann Dance and Artistic Director of Riverbend Dance Arts from 1993-1999.  Hauss has danced with Kinetic Evolutions since 2010.  Sarah has also worked with Gomez Dance Group, Third Rabbit Dance Ensemble, Interstate Dance Collective, Gerry Girouard and the Christopher Watson Dance Company.  She currently teaches at Gustavus Adolphus College. She is an instructor at BallareTeatro Performing Arts Center in Minneapolis and has taught yoga and movement at the Saint Paul Yoga Center for 15 years.

Tim Russell


Bio: Tim Russell lives at the confluence of the aural and the visual. Called “The premier composer for Modern Dance in Milwaukee" (Shepherd Express), and a “thrilling show within the show”, He is the Music Director of the Dance Department at UW-Milwaukee. Tim is an extremely active performer/composer, creating almost exclusively for choreography. He is the co-curator of Hyperlocal MKE, a Music and Dance improvisation series and his audio shares the stage with a vast array of choreographic artists, bringing Tim and his music across the country from the Judson Church in NYC to ODC in San Francisco. www.avoidancepolicy.com

Andrea Vazquez-Aguirre

Luther College

Bio: MFA: SUNY Brockport, BFA: National Conservatory of Dance, Mexico City She was a scholar under Federal Council for Culture and Arts in Mexico. She has danced in several professional companies in Mexico and the United States. She is currently serving as visiting assistant professor of dance at Luther College, contributing and supporting the Movement Fundamentals curriculum. She is enjoying the journey as a future Projective Kinetics Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analyst. She is co-director along with her creative and life partner, James J. Kaufmann of Another River Interdisciplinary Ensemble. www.anotheriver.com

Andy Kust

University of Minnesota Duluth

Bio: Andy Kust is an award-winning music director, vocal coach and pianist whose work has been seen and heard on regional stages across the country. As an actor-turned-music director, Andy specializes in the multi-faceted training and pedagogy of the contemporary singing actor. His recent credits include Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Arizoni Award Winner for Best Music Direction), Next to Normal (Arizoni Award Nominee for Best Music Direction), Spring Awakening (MET Award Nominee for Best Music Direction), American Idiot, RENT,Bat Boy: The Musical, and Bare. Andy keeps a busy schedule as a professional pianist, having played for several Broadway touring casts, including Wicked, Les Misérables, and Evita. Andy is currently on faculty with the UMD Theatre Department, where he teaches courses in Singing, Musical Theater Repertoire, Music Literacy, and Audition Techniques. His former students can be seen performing on Broadway, in national tours, and with premier regional theaters that include the Guthrie, Papermill P...

Janice Baker

Iowa State University

Bio: Janice Baker has served on the dance faculty for the Performing Arts degree at Iowa State University for the past 33 years.  Her teaching responsibilities include all levels of ballet, jazz, tap and social dance.  She also specializes in teaching methods for public education, dance in the private sector and adapted dance for special populations.  The New Visions Dance Group is a favorite aspect of her teaching.  Here abled bodies are paired with special needs dancers to create dance where" all shoes are dancing shoes, all bodies are dancing bodies, and all spaces are dancing spaces."  For over 20 years this work has been transformational for able as well as challenged bodies.  This mutually beneficial work celebrates the essence of dance

Jennifer Reinke


Bio: Jenni Reinke is a performing artist working in dance, theatre, and music. A founding member of Quasimondo Physical Theatre (quasimondo.org), she has worked with the company to devise more than 15 original productions. Credits include co-director, choreographer, and performance ensemble. As a dancer, she has performed with Daniel Burkholder/The PlayGround, Danceworks, DanceCircus, and choreographers Nanette Robinson and Laura Murphy. As a violinist, she has performed with Concord Chamber Orchestra, Milwaukee Summer Philharmonia, and more. She is an MFA candidate in dance at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and holds a BA from Beloit College. For more information: jenniferreinke.weebly.com

Jill Lile


Bio: Jill Lile ​is a dance instructor at Macalester College. She has performed in and worked with choreographers Beverly Blossom, Anna Sokolow, Antony Tudor, Laura Glenn, Saeko Ichinoe along with many of the ballet classics. She has taught ballet for all ages for over 40 years in pre-professional ballet programs, universities, and performing arts high schools. A licensed acupuncturist and chiropractor trained in several somatics therapies, she brings a unique perspective to training healthy, thinking dancers.

Kelly Dawson

Administrative Assistant, ArtHaus Decorah

Ken Walker

CSU Dominguez Hills

Bio: Kenneth Walker danced professionally for several companies including Minnesota Ballet, Oakland Ballet and Sacramento Ballet and performed throughout the U.S., Canada and Central America. He is currently an adjunct professor for CSU Dominguez Hills, teaches at The Wooden Floor, and studios throughout the LA area.  He has created dances for professional companies, universities, and pre-professional companies across the country.  Kenneth is the recipient of the Young Choreographer’s award from the Southern CA Dance Theatre and is the youngest finalist to ever compete in the Sarasota Ballet of Florida International Choreography Competition. Kenneth has a BA from UCLA in World Arts and Cultures, a MA in Arts Management, and MBA from Claremont Graduate University.  He is the director of Kenneth Walker Dance Project.

Lila White

U of MN Duluth

Bio: I teach a traditional ballet class with focus on musicality and épaulement. One of my favorite approaches to class involves taking a single combination and then tweaking it to increase its difficulty. This could involve increasing the speed, adding jumps or turns, repeating it on relevé, reversing it or even trying parts with your eyes closed! I endeavor to provide a welcoming atmosphere where teaching and not just giving class is my goal. Intermediate/Advanced.

LilaAnn White

University of Minnesota Duluth

Bio: LilaAnn Coates White is an Assistant Professor of Dance for the Department of Theatre at the University of Minnesota Duluth.  She teaches all levels of Ballet Technique (I-IV) and Conditioning for Dance. Previous classes include Dance History, Modern Technique I and Special Topics courses.  Ms. White is a choreographer who in 2015 was granted a Fellowship Initiative from the New York Choreographic Institute founded by Peter Martins. Her work has been regarded as “sexy”, “humorous” and “tremendously exciting to watch” by the Duluth News Tribune.  She has choreographed for numerous UMD dance concerts and opera productions.  Ms. White has choreographed several works for the Minnesota Ballet including Dear John, and If You Were Here.  Other works include pieces for Lyric Opera of the North, Arrowhead Chorale, Ressl Dance!, Dances on the Lakewalk and American College Dance Festival Association. Most recently Ms. White choreographed a gala piece for the School of the Minnesota Ballet involving thirty-six students to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Minnesota Ballet. Ms. White danced professionally for ten years and holds a B.A. in Health Sciences and a Master of Arts in Physical Therapy from The College of St. Scholastica.  She is also the Principal Teacher for the School of the Minnesota Ballet.  Ms. White has successfully completed the ABT Teacher Training Intensive and is an ABT Certified Teacher in Primary through Level 5 by the American Ballet Theatre® National Training Curriculum.

Marco Carreon

CSU Dominguez Hills

Bio: Marco A Carreon, MOSAIC Artistic Director/Dance Lecturer, received his AA for Visual & Performing Arts from San Diego City College, his BA in Theater Arts:  Dance Option from CSU Dominguez Hills, and his Moderate/Severe Special Education credential from CSUDH. He is currently in the Special Education Master's program at CSUDH. Marco has danced with such companies as the José Costas Dance Company, Louise Reichlin and Dancers, and Ressl Dance!. He has been a guest choreographer for Dances on the Lakewalk in Duluth since 2014.  He teaches Dance for Children, Dance Perceptions, and Dance Production for the Dance Program and Social Folk Dance for the Department of Kinesiology. Marco is also the Artistic Director of the CSUDH resident dance company MOSAIC.

Matthew Wagner

University of Minnesota Duluth

Bio: Matthew Wagner has been teaching with UMD for the past three years. Having spent the previous 10 years in Manhattan he has worked across the United States with various dance and theatre companies. He danced with site-specific choreographer Stephan Koplowitz, and performed in productions of Crazy For You, George M!, Cats, Evita and on the Broadway national tour of 42nd Street. He has also toured the U.S. with the NYC Tap/Comedy company Parallel Exit. He began his dance training 26 years ago, and has since studied with master teachers such as Roxane Butterfly, Shapiro & Smith, Sean Curran and Randy Skinner. Matthew received his BFA in Dance from Stephens College where he also studied world dance forms such as Irish Step, Flamenco, Bharatanatyam and Kathak. His love of percussive dance largely influences the work he creates today for companies like Step Brothers NYC, Renegade Theatre Co., and the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Nicholas DeShaw

Duluth, MN

Bio: Capoeira: The Afro-Brazilian movement art of combat and dance, sends those who she calls on an epic journey. Monitor Surfista Prateado (Nicholas DeShaw) began that epic journey in 2006 and has never looked back! Ever questing for knowledge Surfista regularly travels to the learn from the best Capoeira instructors and practitioners throughout the world. Surfista was recognized for his dedication to the art and culture of Capoeira and was awarded the rank of Monitor by the legendary Mestre Amen and Contra Mestre Versatil. Maintaining a strong connection to the roots of Capoeira Surfista traveled to Brazil in 2009 and again in 2013 questing through many of the historic centers of Capoeira including Salvador da Bahia, the homeland of his Mestre (Master). Believing in the power of Capoeira to change and enhance lives Surfista has taught for five years at Avalon Educational Institute, a charity bringing cultural arts to all and outreaching to the vulnerable and at risk youth of Duluth.

Deveny Miles

Luther College

Mathew Wagner

U of MN Duluth

Brett Cox


Danielle Ricci

University of Wisconsin - River Falls

Lisa Fitzpatrick

University of Minnesota Duluth

Dario Mejia

Darrius Strong

Nia Long

Yeniel "Chini" Perez

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