As a dancer, I am passionate and curious about my work, which inspires me to continue my education. I want to understand how technique and expressivity work for my own body as well as others. In class, I constantly push myself to go further, add more dynamics, and experiment with different intentions. I find joy in adding my own personal expression to what I perform in class and on the stage.
I endeavor to share this love, and curiosity, of movement with my students; I want them to find their own appreciation of dance through experiences that reveal challenges to be rewarding, not discouraging. When approaching creative as well as technical challenges, I strive to provide my students with tools in order to work through these challenges and consequently learn more about their own moving bodies. As a class, I believe students should acquire knowledge of technique and dance history while simultaneously discovering their own self.
I believe dance training is more than learning technique. Students’ dance education should challenge their brain in various ways and constantly dare them to take their performance one step further. I accomplish this through multi-dimensional education techniques: asking them to create and analyze different movement within our class, choreograph small phrases, and make artistic choices through creating their own preparations before a combination. This allows students to discover their artistic voice and make decisions while learning and implementing technique.
Within my classroom, I create a safe environment by setting guidelines for mutual respect and attitudes that are conducive to learning. This safe environment allows dancers to work together, solve problems, and create new ideas; for example, at barre I have dancers work together to discuss and practice corrections for combinations. By working together and working through challenges as a group I hope to build a sense of community that is supportive and positive. I believe that a community atmosphere like this helps to motivate students, in addition to being beneficial to other facets of their life, such as school work, and success in other activities.
The reason that I teach is to share the passion I have for dance with my students while cultivating their passion for the art. I want them to accomplish their own goals for technique, while also nurturing their individual creativity. My curiosity as a dancer aids in my ability to help my students with illusive movement solutions as well as sharing that inquisitiveness with them. I believe that as a dance teacher, I am constantly challenged to find new ways to reach students and to keep them motivated.
I believe that dance education should involve analysis of self and the body as well as problem solving individually and in a group. Through teaching dance, I help develop individuals that are able to collaborate and be involved in their community. Finally, I think that exceptional dancers are multidimensional in their bodies as well as their minds and their lives. I encourage students to do whatever they set their mind to because they have drive, good work ethics, and the intelligence to accomplish their goals, which they learn from their dance training.
Muhlenberg Summer Music Theater, Grimm Education Workshops 2015
Lighthouse Youthe Theatre/Drama Bee
I first joined LYT as a Drama Bee educator and guest choreographer for their summer program. I then became involved in planning their Annual Gala and after that my role as an employee grew and grew! I now teach Drama Bee classses and train new Drama Bee educators, choreograph and stage manage the Junior Workshop, Mainstage, and Protege productions, as well as organizing the props and costumes for all of the performances. This job has had many challenges while I explore Musical Theater as a choreographer, educator, and stage manager, but I have a great respect for the program and the students that come through it.
Dance Factory Ridgefield
I joined the teaching staff at Dance Factory Ridgefield, then called Ridgefield Dance & Fitness, during the fall in 2017. I began teaching the advanced ballet classes and acro for all levels. In December 2018 I also performed as the Sugar Plum Fairy in their performance of The Nutcracker!
Scarsdale Ballet Studio
I began by teaching a choreography class for the 2014 summer intensive and throughout the last few years I have subbed for the beginning ballet and creative movement classes. Then I moved up to teaching their Intro and Level A ballet courses, as well as subbing for some of the higher level ballet and pointe classes.
During the summer of 2015 I taught a choreography dance class for an hour every day. In addition to creating lessons I also choreographed dances for their performance at the end of the camp that combined my own choreography with what the dancers created.
Grimm Educational Workshops
In the summer of 2015 I worked on creating and running educational workshops for the children’s performance of Grimm! for the Muhlenberg Summer Music Theater. I worked with the cast and creators of Grimm! to create a workshop focused on building a community through storytelling. I organized registration and the day to day running of every workshop, as well as having traveling workshops, which visited camps and schools around the Lehigh Valley.
EGC Dance Center
I had the opportunity to work with my family while teaching at EGC Dance Center, which is owned by my Aunt Erica! During the studio's first year I was able to teach ballet, and creative movement. It was a wonderful experience to learn about the work that is needed to open a dance studio and my aunt graciously showed me that and much more!
Before joining the Muhlenberg College Dance Center as a teacher, I went through teaching courses, as well as a teaching practicum. During my practicum, I worked with my professors and other student teachers to learn about MCDC and gain experience teaching in a classroom. I was also able to go into public schools and teach some after school programs and host young dancers at Muhlenberg. Since joining the staff I have taught creative movement I and II, beginning and advanced ballet, pointe, beginning jazz, and intermediate/advanced modern.