How long have you been dancing?
"Since kindergarten! In high school I studied three to five hours per day—mostly ballet and modern dance—and I also studied in New York during the summer."
What attracted you to Towson’s program?
"I wanted to be closer to my family and to become involved with the local dance community. I have several friends who graduated from the program; they loved the curriculum and highly recommended it. I liked that the program is balanced in ballet and modern. I was also excited to learn that the dance department's mission is to educate its dancers to dance for a lifetime—as opposed to burning out at an early age."
You seem pretty excited about a course you’re taking now.
"It’s called Scientific Basis for Movement Analysis II, and it’s a two-part foundational class for majors taught by Nancy Romita. Part I provided us with a solid understanding of human physiology and anatomy. The second class focuses more on practical conditioning and imagery as well as applying what we learned earlier to improve our dance technique. We work with therabands and balls and then see how it improves our ability to turn, balance or jump."
What can you tell us about Professor Romita?
"Nancy Romita is one of my favorites. She’s giving us a dual approach to dance: instruction plus theory. Her knowledge base is so impressive: she teaches Movement Efficiency Training and is a nationally certified master teacher in the Alexander Technique."
The Alexander Technique? What’s that?
"It’s a unique method of re-learning body alignment in ways that alleviate tension and stress. Frederick Matthias Alexander developed the principles toward the end of the 1800s, and it’s been studied ever since by dancers, actors, athletes and others."
So what’s in the works for this summer?
"I'm participating in the Pilobolus Technique Workshop in Washington Depot, Conn., and the Advanced Pilobolus Technique Workshop in New York City. These workshops focus on the physical techniques behind contact improv, weight sharing and complex lifts featured in Pilobolus' choreography. In addition to the technique, the workshops also delve into the creative processes of working collaboratively with other artists."
Any thoughts about what you’ll do after graduation?
"I plan to pursue a master’s degree in movement therapy after graduation. It’s a relatively new field that involves working with different artists to identify quirks and habits that cause pain. There are a lot of opportunities to help people."