Recent Visiting Artists to the Dance Division:
Nii -Tete Yartey
C urrent Artistic Director of the National Dance Company of Ghana (Ghana Dance Ensemble), he is a dance educator, choreographer and performer who envisions his work in this field as a re-contextualization of traditions, with a particular focus on dance theatre and contemporary African dance. He was exposed to dance at a very early age. Coming from a family of dancers, he had the opportunity to observe and participate in dance performances with various dancers and professionals that used his father’s dance space for creating their works. Nii-Tete holds a Diploma, BFA and M.F.A. degrees in Dance and Theatre Arts from the University of Ghana, specializing in Choreography and acting. He was a Graduate Assistant at the Department of Dance Studies at the University of Ghana and stage managed the Performing Arts Workshop (PAWS) based in Accra, under Oh! Nii Kwei Sowah. Nii-Tete has been the
Administrative Coordinator at the Noyam African Dance Institute for many years working closely with his father and mentor, Professor F. Nii-Yartey. He has travelled widely performing, teaching and choreographing and conducting workshops in countries like Senegal, Kenya, Belgium, Holland, United Kingdom, Ethiopia and USA. Nii-Tete has scripted and acted in many Ghanaian films, television series and commercials for brands like Tigo, MTN and Coca-Cola. He was adjudged the Best Assistant Choreographer for the African Cup of Nations Football championship Opening and Closing Choreography (CAN 2008).
An independent dance artist who has been choreographing, teaching, and performing internationally for the past 15 years, with performance residencies at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Joyce SoHo, Movement Research in NYC, Jacob’s Pillow, Performática in Puebla Mexico, Wave Rising Dance Festival in NYC, and Wolfeboro’s Arts on the Edge Festival, to name a few. Dworkin’s work has garnered much choreographic support, including funding from the Pew Charitable Trusts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a Djerassi Fellowship, Movement Research Exchange, IPAP in Philadelphia, and a 3-year residency in the Susan Hess Choreographers Project in Philadelphia. Leslie has performed in the works of such noted choreographers as Ralph Lemon, Maureen Fleming, and Kei Takei; was an Associate Artist with Bebe Miller at the Atlantic Center for the Arts; and was a member of the Leah Stein Dance Company, Sharir/Bustamante DanceWorks, and Melanie Stewart Dance Theatre. Leslie has an MFA in Choreography from Temple University, and has been a guest artist and Assistant Professor in numerous dance departments throughout the U.S., including UCLA, UNC/Greensboro, Oberlin College, University of Texas/Austin, and Kenyon College. She is a certified yoga and qigong instructor, and maintains a private practice in central Ohio as a Trager bodywork practitioner.
Lisa Ford Moulton
Lisa received a BS in Modern Dance from Brigham Young University and a MFA in Choreography from the University of Utah. She was a member of the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company in Salt Lake City and worked with the Loose Gravel Dance Company and Contemporary Danceworks before joining the faculty at Ohio University in 1995. She was an Associate Professor of Dance until 2004, when she left full-time work to focus on her young family. Lisa has continued her relationship with Ohio University as a guest artist and adjunct faculty member. In addition to her work with Ohio University students, Lisa’s choreography has been performed both nationally and internationally by the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, Alaska Dance Theatre, and at Dancers’ Workshop in Jackson Hole, WY and OhioDance Festival Choreographers’ Showcases. In 2004, Ms. Moulton was commissioned to create Turning Two Hundred, an evening-length work choreographed to the music of Ohio University faculty member and composer Mark Phillips. Among other honors, she has received two Ohio Arts Council Individual Artist Fellowship Awards and the Ohioana Citation for Dance. Currently, Lisa is a VSA Ohio visiting artist, teaching in two multi-handicapped schools. Since 2006, she has been a choreographer at the Hill Cumorah Pageant, in Palmyra, NY. Lisa has taught Adult Modern Dance at Factory Street Studio since 2010.
Founder and Artistic Director of San Francisco Dance Theater, Cali & Co, Cali comes from an extremely athletic background turned creative - which lead her to dancing. The following practices studied over the past 20 years have deeply influenced Cali’s teaching style: Modern/Contemporary Dance (Cunningham & RELEASE), Improvisation and Contact Improvisation, Ballet, Somatic studies in Feldenkrais, Alexander Technique, Body-Mind Centering, Hapkido (Korean Martial Art Form), Qi Gong, Yoga, Pilates, ZEN Meditation and Thai massage. She has been teaching dance for all levels/ages of moving humans for more than 15 years.
Cali holds an MFA inDance from Hollins University/the American Dance Festival (06'), BFA from Ohio University (97'), is certified in Pilates, co-directed projectLIMB in Brooklyn, NY (03'-06'), founded/directs CALI & CO dance in SF (98' - present). She teaches at ODC Dance Commons, ROCO Dance & Fitness and Sonoma State University.
Wanjiru Kamuyu, founding Artistic Director of WK Collective, has performed and choreographed dance for over a decade on and for stage and TV. She began training in her homeland of Kenya and continued studying at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, American Dance Festival, and Philadanco. She holds an M.F.A. in dance choreography and performance from Temple University.
As a performer, Kamuyu has toured nationally and internationally with world-renowned choreographer Jawole Willa Jo Zollar (Urban Bush Women). She has worked with esteemed choreographers Molissa Fenley (Molissa Fenley and Dancers), Sean Curran, Marlies Yearby (Movin’s Spirits Dance Theater/Broadway musical RENT), Nathan Trice (RITUALS), Tania Isaac (Tania Isaac Dance Projects) and Dean Moss (Gametophyte Inc.). As an original cast member of The Lion King at Theatre Mogador, Paris, Kamuyu performed in Julie Taymor’s production for three years. She performed as an original cast member and served as Resident Choreographer, Dance Captain, and Swing for the successful run of Bill T. Jones’ Tony Award winning Broadway musical FELA! at the Royal National Theater and continued on as Dance Captain and Swing in the show’s first European and US National Tours.
Douglas Nielsen has been a guest teacher and choreographer at more than 40 universities throughout the United States and abroad. He has served as the Rufus Putnam Professor in residence at Ohio University, as the Sage Cole Chair at the University of Minnesota, and guest faculty at New York University Tisch School of the Arts. Currently, Douglas resides in Tucson, Arizona, where he serves as Professor at the University of Arizona School of Dance.
Former member of the Batsheva Dance Company in Israel and Gus Solomons, Pearl Lang, and Paul Sanasardo dance companies in New York, he has performed solo works by Viola Farber, Beverly Blossom, Anna Sokolow, Murray Louis, and Charles Weidman. Douglas began dancing shortly after earning a B.A. in psychology at Augsburg College, Minneapolis. He studied dance at the California Institute of the Arts in the early ‘70’s with Donald McKayle, Bella Lewitzky, and Mia Slavenska.
In 1988, Douglas pioneered the founding of the first modern dance company of Mainland China (The Guangdong Dance Company). Other international assignments include L'ecole-Atelier Rudra Bejart Lausanne (Switzerland), The Beijing Dance Adademy (China), Palucca Schule (Dresden, Germany), University of the Americas (Mexico), and representing the American Dance Festival in Korea, Russia, China, Czech Republic, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Mongolia.
Artistic Director of Mary Seidman and Dancers, Mary has operated her own modern dance school for eight years. Her dance company performs at venues such as Jacob’s Pillow, BAM, Symphony Space, and St. Mark’s Church. She is a faculty member at Mark Morris Dance Center, Brooklyn, and Third Street Music School, NYC.
Seán Curran, of Sean Curran Company, began his dance training with traditional Irish step dancing as a young boy in Boston, Massachusetts. He went on to make his mark on the dance world as a leading dancer with the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. He received a New York Dance and Performance (“Bessie”) Award for his performance in Secret Pastures.
A graduate and guest faculty member of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, Curran was an original member of the New York City cast of the Off-Broadway percussion extravaganza Stomp, performing in the show for four years. He has performed his solo evening of dances at venues throughout the United States as well as at Sweden's Danstation Theatre and France's EXIT Festival.
Stefanie Batten Bland
Stefanie’s choreographic vision of contemporary dance redefines community by illustrating the synergy that arises when interdisciplinary artists from varied backgrounds and cultures collide. This vision was recognized as a 2010/12 Baryshnikov Arts Center/Jerome Robbins NEW fellow and a Cambridge Who’s Who! Of Professionals and Entrepreneurs.
SBB has guested and danced for choreographers, directors, and companies including Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Sean Curran, Kraig Patterson, Gus Solomons Jr., Douglas Dunn, Lar Lubovitch Dance, Pina Bausch Tanz Theater Wüppertal, Julie Taymor, Angelin Preljocaj, and Pal Frenak.
SBB fuses her past heritage and current collaborators to create her own distinct, multi disciplinary futuristic environments for stage and film. Currently with pieces on Alvin Ailey ll, Frontier Danceland of Singapore and is a 2013 artist in residence at Rutgers University. Click for recent Dance Enthusiast Article on her Black Madonna
LISA K. LOCK
Lisa has been a freelance artist with many companies, starting with the Swiss Chamber Ballet in Basel, Switzerland and finishing with Hysterica Dance Company in L.A.She also set original works on the Ohio Dance Theater, Verb Ballets, Dancing Wheels, Great Lakes Youth Ballet, and the former Cleveland Contemporary Dance Theater.
As a solo artist and choreographer Lisa recently collaborated with San Francisco based filmmaker John T. Williams in his project 2412. She performed extensively throughout the L. A. basin as well as the greater Cleveland, OH area. Her works have also been seen in Honolulu, San Francisco, Chicago and NYC as well as in international showcases in major cities like Paris, Madrid, Vienna, Edinghburgh, Lithuania, and Guatemala in addition to her native Switzerland.
Spiral, originally created as a solo, explores the affects and effects of the imposed Western patriarchal beauty standards.