Our contributors enrich the content at Dance Advantage. Each extends our vision and mission with his/her unique voice, expert knowledge, and experience in the field of dance.
Lauren Warnecke is a freelance dance writer based in Chicago, and regular contributor to SeeChicagoDance.com, Windy City Times, and Chicago Magazine. Lauren is the creator of artintercepts.org, a blog committed to critical discourse about dance and performance, and has written for nationally reputed sites such as Dance Advantage and 4Dancers. An experienced educator, administrator, and producer, Lauren holds degrees in dance (BA) and kinesiology (MS). She is a Certified Personal Trainer (ACSM), and holds specialty certificates in Functional Training (ACE) and Sports Performance and Weightlifting (USAW).
Heather Vaughan-Southard is a dance educator and freelance choreographer based in Michigan with rich teaching experiences in higher education, K-12 public schools, and private studios. With an approach of teaching dance as a liberal art, she draws from her experiences dancing professionally in Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles to create experiences that move beyond the boundaries of a studio, producing well-rounded, thinking dance citizens. She is author of the blog EducatingDancers, where she chronicles her perspectives on dance and dance education. Heather holds an MFA in Dance from the University of Michigan, BFA in dance from Western Michigan University, K-12 Dance Certification from Wayne State University and is the mother of two small children whom never seem to stop moving.
Latest posts by Heather Vaughan-Southard (see all)
- On Paths and Pyramids: Reshaping The Future of Dance - April 2, 2015
- Potential Hazards of Discussing a Dancer’s Potential - March 2, 2015
- When Challenging Advanced Dancers Presents Challenges - January 19, 2015
Rachel Hellwig is a dance writer/editor from Birmingham, Alabama. She enjoys taking ballet classes, reading about dance, and attending live performances of ballet and classical music. She blogs at: http://clarascoffeebreak.wordpress.com. You can also follow her on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ivyalso
Latest posts by Rachel Hellwig (see all)
- Sugar Plum Fairy Exposé: Dissolving The Sugar Coating - December 21, 2015
- 10 Signs You’re a Stagestruck Dancer - July 20, 2015
- Leaps in the Dark: Agnes de Mille and the Road to Oklahoma - April 27, 2015
Jessica C. Warchal-King is a Philly-based performer, choreographer, educator, and arts advocate. She is a member of Kun-Yang Lin/ Dancers and Nora Gibson Contemporary Ballet and has toured nationally and internationally. Jessica is co-founder and curator of the InHale Performance Series and she teaches at universities, studios, and arts centers. Jessica earned her MFA in Dance from Temple and her BA in Dance and Anthropology from Muhlenberg College. She is a trained instructor in Dance for PD, a program developed by the Mark Morris Dance Group to bring dance to people with Parkinson’s Disease, and a Power Pilates Mat I & II Certified Instructor. The Embodiment Project is Jessica’s ongoing research project combining education, physical dance practice, and performance. Using dance as its medium, The Embodiment Project investigates the relationships between kinesthetic, somatic, and anatomical understanding, self-awareness, art-making, joy-creation, and social justice. www.jcwarchalking.blogspot.com
Latest posts by Jessica Warchal-King (see all)
- Embodying a Magic Spell: Pilates Cross-Training For Dancers - August 3, 2015
- 4 Dancer Hacks for Performances or Summer Training - July 6, 2015
- Alexander Technique: Connecting The Dancer’s Multi-Purpose Body - April 20, 2015
Leigh Purtill is a ballet instructor, choreographer and coach in Los Angeles where she lives with her husband and dog. She received her master’s degree in Film Production from Boston University and her bachelor’s in Anthropology and Dance from Mount Holyoke College. She is the author of two young adult novels from Penguin and one coming soon from HarperCollins. She currently teaches all levels of ballet to adults. Zombie ballet is her passion. She can be reached through her website, www.leighpurtillballet.com.
Latest posts by Leigh Purtill (see all)
- Alla Osipenko: The life of a Kirov ballerina - January 19, 2016
- “Rebel on Pointe”: an independent spirit in a traditional world - November 16, 2015
- Does It Really Take “84 Ribbons” To Become a Ballet Soloist? - September 8, 2015
Kathi Martuza is a former professional ballet dancer who spent 15 years dancing with the San Francisco Ballet as a Corps de ballet dancer and with the Oregon Ballet Theatre as a Principal dancer. Kathi holds a BA in Performing Arts with an emphasis in dance, is a Certified PEAK Pilates instructor, Certified Health Coach, and licensed True Body Project teacher. She is the owner-operator of Empowered Health and Movement, LLC- dedicated to empowering girls and women to feel great IN and ABOUT their bodies through nutrition, movement and self love. Kathi helps her clients with weight loss/management, improving self-esteem and body image, and body conditioning. Kathi believes wholeheartedly in the innate power girls and women possess and she hopes to empower them towards becoming their happiest, healthiest and most-fulfilled selves. Find out more about Kathi and her work at www.empoweredhealthandmovement.com.
Latest posts by Kathi Martuza (see all)
- 8 Ways To Overcome Stage Fright - October 26, 2015
- 5 Simple Strategies for Improving Body Image (that you can start doing right now) - July 13, 2015
- What This Ballerina Knows About Body Hatred - March 9, 2015
Elizabeth is a dance minor and journalism major at Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville. A dance student since the age of six, she has danced in the studio and on dance team, as well as at Radio City Music Hall as part of the Rockette Summer Intensive. She currently teaches at a studio in her college town.
Latest posts by Elizabeth Semko (see all)
- Tap Dance Legend: Eleanor Powell - January 11, 2016
- Jazz Dance Legend: Bob Fosse - December 7, 2015
- What I Learned About Auditioning From The Rockettes - November 30, 2015
A passionate advocate for early childhood dance education, Maria Hanley Blakemore teaches ages 18 months to 6 years, 6 days a week. Maria currently designs and implements ballet programs for the young families and after school division at the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan. In Brooklyn, Maria teaches creative movement, creative ballet, and parent/toddler classes at Dancewave Center and The Mark Morris Dance Group. Maria holds a Master’s degree in dance education from New York University (2007) and a Bachelor’s degree in dance performance from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania (2005). She also serves on Dance/NYC’s Junior Committee and is a member of the National Dance Education Organization. Maria is the founder of Maria’s Movers, a program that offers dance, movement and yoga classes to boys and girls in their early years. She authors the blog Move. Create. Educate. (www.mariasmovers.com), where she shares her creative ideas about teaching young dancers.
Dance Advantage welcomes guest posts from other dance teachers, students, parents, professionals, or those knowledgeable in related fields. If you are interested in having your article published at Dance Advantage, please see the following info on submitting a guest post.
Latest posts by Guest Contributors (see all)
- The Importance Of Mentorship In Dance - February 9, 2016
- May I Have This Dance? Partnering In Ballroom - September 28, 2015
- Misty Copeland and Lauren Anderson Share The Stage In Houston - August 14, 2015
Nichelle Suzanne is a writer specializing in dance and online content. She is also a dance instructor with over 20 years experience teaching in dance studios, community programs, and colleges. She began Dance Advantage in 2008, equipped with a passion for movement education and an intuitive sense that a blog could bring dancers together. As a Houston-based dance writer, Nichelle covers dance performance for Dance Source Houston, Arts+Culture Texas, and other publications. She is a leader in social media within the dance community and has presented on blogging for dance organizations, including Dance/USA. Nichelle provides web consulting and writing services for dancers, dance schools and studios, and those beyond the dance world.
Latest posts by Nichelle (owner/editor) (see all)
- Picking The Perfect Summer Dance Program - February 4, 2016
- What Charlotte The Spider Knows About Nurturing Champions - January 7, 2016
- Dance Bloggers Share Their Best Of 2015 - January 5, 2016