Webster Dance actively seeks guest artists, giving Webster dancers opportunities to work alongside national and international professionals.
Nejla Yatkin to teach master class on Sep 27
Nejla Y. Yatkin, Artistic Director of NY2Dance is originally from Berlin, Germany
with Turkish roots. She is a 2012/13 3Arts Awardee, a 2011 Creation Fund recipient
of the National Performance Network, a 2008 Princess Grace Choreography Fellow, was
named by Dance Magazine as one of "Top 25 to Watch in 2005" and "Outstanding Emerging Artist" by the D.C.
Mayor's Arts Award Committee. This award-winning and internationally acclaimed choreographer
and dancer graduated with a professional concert dance degree from Die Etage - a Performing
Arts College in Berlin, Germany.
Ms. Yatkin is currently commuting between New York and Chicago dancing, choreographing and giving workshops at international and national festivals creating commissioned work for other companies, evening length works for her own company, site specific works as well as dances for film, theatre and opera. In the past she has been awarded numerous grants to create and perform from Arts International, the National Performance Network, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Kennedy Center, the D.C. Commission of the Arts and Humanities, The Turkish Cultural Foundation and the University of Maryland. To date, Ms. Yatkin has received five awards from the Metro D.C. Dance Awards, including two "Outstanding Individual Performance," "Best Scenic Design," and "Best Multi-Media Performance" as well as “Best Overall Production in a small venue. Recently, she choreographed for Dallas Black Dance Theatre, the Washington Ballet, the Darpana Performing Group in India, Baltimore Ballet, the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble and River North Chicago.. Since the fall of 2001, she has also been a Professor of Dance at the University of Maryland - College Park and then held a position as Artist in Resident at the University of Notre Dame from 2008-2012. The New York Times describes her work as “somewhere between narration and abstraction with considerable formal beauty” For further information please visit www.ny2dance.com.
Jamie Graham to set choreography in Fall 2013
Jamie Graham is a performer, improviser, and teacher based in New York, NY. Born in
Nashville, TN, Jamie moved to Saint Louis, MO in 2001 to attend Webster University
as a Daniel Webster scholar; she graduated in 2005 cum laude with a B.F.A. in dance
and a B.A. in English Literature. She then crossed the Atlantic for one year of postgraduate
study at the Rotterdamse Dansacademie, Holland, where she studied contemporary techniques,
improvisation, and tanz theater; she also began her Pilates certification here through
Romana's Pilates under the tutelage of Marjorie Oren.
In 2006 Jamie made the move to New York and began dancing with Juliana May / May Dance, while also completing her Pilates certification at True Pilates with Sari Mejo Santo. She began studying Klein technique with Barbara Mahler in 2007 and since then has had the honor to perform with Mahler at the 92nd St Y, Judson Church, Green Space, and Center for Performance Research. She has been working with Naomi Goldberg Hass / Dances for A Variable Population since 2008, creating site-specific performances that bring together professional dancers with communities of older adults. Jamie has had the opportunity to work with communities in lower Manhattan, Harlem, Chatham (NY), Jacob's Pillow, Martha's Vineyard and Vancouver.
In 2010 she began pursuing physical theater and clown at the Pig Iron Theater's Summer Session in Philadelphia. She subsequently began collaborating with Amy Larimer and their coach Jay Rhoderick in New York. Together they make The Raving Jaynes, weaving together dance and theater improvisation techniques to make performances based on an audience suggestion. They have been presented at The PIT's Improv Festival, the Unscripted Festival, Triskelion Arts' Comedy in Dance Festival, Joe's Pub, Built on Stilts in Martha's Vineyard, Twin City Improv Festival in Minneapolis, Adapt Festival in Los Angeles, and will be performing at the Abundance Festival in Karlstad, Sweden in September, 2013. Jamie also has performed in the fast paced, witty work of Jenny Rocha and her Painted Ladies at Galapagos Art Space's weekly Floating Kabarette since 2011.
Follow these links to see some of Jamie's work:
The Raving Jaynes: http://amylarimer.org/amylarimer.org/Video.html
Barbara Mahler at Judson Church: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZ5Evr0daZA
Dances for A Variable Population at Jacob's Pillow: https://vimeo.com/69724847
DVP's Dances for Seniors Program: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEf7arj-ml0
Heather Ward (Nisaa) to teach Belly Dance master class Oct 16
Heather D. Ward (Nisaa) is a Middle Eastern dance instructor, performer, and researcher
based in St. Louis, Missouri. As an instructor and performer, Nisaa specializes in
Egyptian raqs sharqi (belly dance). Her repertoire also includes Egyptian folkloric
dance, including beledi,ghawazee, and sa'idi dance styles, as well as folkloric styles
from the Levant and the Persian Gulf. As a researcher, Nisaa's primary area of concentration
is the transition from awalem and ghawazee dance styles to classical raqs sharqi at
the turn of the 19th/20th centuries in Egypt. Since 2009, she has conducted in-depth
examinations of primary textual, photographic, and pictorial evidence as well as on-site
investigations in Cairo in order to advance knowledge of the dancers and performance
venues of this period. Nisaa's work on this subject has been published in the Gilded
Serpent and Belly Dance Chronicles magazines.
Nisaa began her studies of Middle Eastern dance with several well-known dancers in Missouri and Illinois, including Nadia Alooma, Salwa (director of Aalim Dance Academy), and Diana Wolf (former director of Simone's Seventh Veil Dance Studio). Currently, she continues to attend master classes, seminars, and workshops with internationally-renowned dancers such as Aisha Ali, Farida Fahmy, Dr. Mo Geddawi, Mahmoud Reda, Ranya Renee, Sahra Saeeda, and Yousry Sharif, among others. Nisaa has completed courses one through four in Sahra Saeeda's Journey through Egypt series. In addition to her dance training, Nisaa holds a bachelor's degree in anthropology and history from Kent State University and a master's degree in anthropology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Nisaa's academic background rounds out her dance training and provides the foundation for her meticulous approach to the study of Middle Eastern dance.
Nisaa has been teaching Middle Eastern dance since 2003. In the summer of 2008, she opened her studio in south St. Louis as a dedicated space for the propagation of Middle Eastern dance, music, and culture in the St. Louis area. In addition to teaching, Nisaa has performed extensively at Middle Eastern dance events, cultural festivals, and other Middle Eastern themed events and venues both in the St. Louis area and beyond. Nisaa also produces several events each year, including her annual student recital, which she has choreographed and directed annually since 2005, and workshops featuring internationally-renowned guest instructors, which she has hosted in partnership with St. Charles Community College since 2010.
Through excellent instruction, outstanding performances, and original research, Nisaa presents Middle Eastern dance as a living, dynamic folk art and a window into the rich heritage of the peoples and cultures of the Middle East.