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Chicago Dances


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Chicago Dances


Chicago Dances 2019 Cast

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Ben


Ben


Benjamin Holliday Wardell

Benjamin Holliday Wardell is the founder and Creative Director of The Cambrians. His dance training began in ballet and has since widened to encompass and ever broader range of techniques. In his fourteen years as a professional dancer, Ben has had the privilege to work with many of the world’s leading choreographers and movement researchers on innovative performance ventures. His career began with The Cincinnati Ballet, where he achieved the rank of soloist before moving to San Francisco to dance with Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet. Working with LINES allowed Ben to expand further into his understanding of the human body and the many ways to create dance performance. Moving from San Francisco, he joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. After working with this company for over four years, Ben began to freelance. Based in Chicago, he has toured internationally with Aszure Barton and Artists, created work with Ron de Jesus Dance and has been an ensemble member of Lucky Plush Productions since late 2011. He has originated works with master choreographers and in so doing gained a breadth of knowledge and professional respect, which allow him to forge new paths in dance creation. His methods center on generating work through large-scale, complex collaborations in which members of numerous dance genres and communities contribute their knowledge, movement and creativity to the creation of singular performance processes.  The purpose of these collaborations is to create high-quality, experimental art that audiences of diverse backgrounds can identify with and enjoy.   

Ben is the recipient of a 2014 Illinois Arts Council Fellowship Award and one of four 2015 Lab Artist Awards from Chicago Dancemakers Forum

At 33, Ben's curiosity is inexorably drawn to the nature of performance, the phenomenon of dance and the capacity of art to thwart the walls that divide us.

Ben is paired with Michel in The Nexus Project and performs in Clover with Michel and Mindy.

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Christian


Christian


Christian Denice

Christian Denice began his professional dance career at Odyssey Dance Theater in Salt Lake City, Utah, and spent the next three years at River North Dance Chicago in Chicago, IL, under the direction of Frank Chaves. There, Mr. Denice worked with such choreographers as Robert Battle, Sidra Bell, Lauri Stallings, and Frank Chaves. He has guest performed with the Montgomery Ballet, Greensboro Ballet, and Company E. Recently, Christian lived in Montreal, Quebec where he danced for Les Ballets Jazz de Montreal and had the privilege of performing works by Andonis Foniadakis, Cayetano Soto, Wen Wei Wang, and Barak Marshall. In addition to dancing, Christian teaches and choreographs nationally and internationally. He has created works for Odyssey Dance Theatre, Odyssey II, Expansions Dance Company, River North Dance Chicago in collaboration with Frank Chaves, LEVELdance Chicago, DanceWorks Chicago, Interlochen Center for the Arts, METdance too, the Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company, and Missouri Contemporary Ballet. Christian is the 2015-2016 winner of the University of South Florida's Echo Choreographic Competition, and had a two-week residency at the university where he restaged his 2011 work, " raum". He is also the 2016 winner of the Joffrey Academy's Winning Works Choreographic competition where he had the honor of creating a work on the trainee and studio company dancers. In April 2016, Christian directed and choreographed a short dance film entitled “the watchers” filmed by Salt Lake City based videographer Bryce Johnson. 

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Erin


Erin


 Erin Kilmurray

Erin Kilmurray is a performer, choreographer + producer - drawing upon a contemporary dance practice, ensemble theatre, space-making, and a long standing relationship with nightlife culture. In performance, Erin has worked with Kate Corby & Dancers, Same Planet Different World, Rebecca Lemme | Acts of Matter + Jessie Young and for varied theatrical productions, among others. As a choreographer, she creates fiercely energetic, thoughtful live performance exchanges that intentionally shift between immersive and proscenium formats, resonating in concert dance spaces, lo-fi performance galleries, music venues, parties and film. Consequently, Kilmurray's choreography has been presented and supported by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Links Hall, The Cambrians, Metro Chicago, Northwestern University, The University of Chicago, The Chicago Reader, Chicago Dancemakers Forum, Empty Bottle Presents, Thalia Hall + Salonathon. She has received acclaimed reviews, being named “Best Choreographer ”(Chicago Reader) and one of “Four Artists Heating Up This Fall” (Chicago Magazine). She is a grateful recipient of 2017 3arts ‘Make A Wave’ award, a CCT Young Leader’s Fund award and a Sponsored Artist with High Concept Labs, and is a 2018 CDF Greenhouse Grantee. Kilmurray is the director/ + choreographer of The Fly Honey Show and a member of The Inconvenience. This is Erin’s first time creating and performing with The Cambrians.

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Kara


Kara


Kara Brody

Kara Brody's dance training began in her hometown of Detroit, Michigan where she later received a BFA from Wayne State University. During her time in Detroit, she worked closely with artists Stefanie batten Bland, Eddie Taketa, Dwight Rhoden, Clifford Williams, Trey McIntyre, and Kate Hutter. In 2015, Kara toured internationally to Seoul, South Korea with ArtLabJ dance company for the New Dance for Asia International Festival. 

Kara relocated to Chicago, IL in 2016. She is in her third season with Lucky Plush Productions under the direction of Julia Rhoads. She is currently in process with Khecari under the direction of Julia Rae Antonick and Jonathan Meyer for their newest work, “Marginalia.” She has performed with The Cambrians for their annual showcase “Chicago Dances,” for two consecutive years, performing works by Shannon Alvis, Kevin Iega Jeff, and Alice Klock. In 2018, Kara joined Amanda Maraist for her on-going project “Burrow, Tousle” which premiered at Links Hall in conjunction with IS/LAND, a local Asian collective. Since then, “Burrow, Tousle” has been performed in JELLO: Performance Series and An.Open.Space. Kara has also performed at High Concept Labs with Amanda Maraist in collaboration with local musician, Christopher Elmore.

Kara teaches in Chicago and throughout the midwest. She has been on faculty at Visceral, Dovetail Studios, The Cambrians’ Winter and Summer Intensive, Brighton Dance Festival, The Dance Place LTD., and Actors Gymnasium. Kara teaches regularly for Lucky Plush Productions’ company class. She offers a contemporary movement class based in modern technique focusing on the ways that momentum, weight, and gravity influence the movement experience.

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Noelle Kayser


Noelle Kayser


Noelle kayser

Noelle Kayser (Atlanta, GA) began her professional career in 2011 at Luna Negra Dance Theater as an apprentice under the direction of Gustavo Ramirez Sansano. During her apprenticeship, she performed the company's repertoire both nationally and internationally. In 2013 she joined glo, an Atlanta-based collaborative performance platform founded by Lauri Stallings. Other credits include the Proia Dance Project, Erik Thurmond’s Ripple, Gathering Wild, and Scrap Theater Group's one-woman play Leda. In addition to her dancing, Noelle has narrated 16 audiobooks for Listen Up Productions / audible.com, and appeared in industrials for Grey Television and Kitchenaid.

Since relocating to Chicago in 2015, Noelle has had the opportunity to act as a choreographic assistant to both Stephanie Martinez and Wilfredo Rivera. Noelle has set her own choreography on Cerqua Rivera Dance Theater, Moonwater Dance Project, and Atlanta’s Kit Modus. Noelle is currently in her fourth season with Visceral Dance Chicago under the direction of Nick Pupillo. Noelle is very excited to be returning for the second of year of Chicago Dances with The Cambrians.

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Prince


Prince


Prince Lyons

Prince Lyons (St. Louis, MO) began his dance training at Best Dance and Talent Center under the direction of Judy Best-Person. After high school, Prince attended Webster University in Saint Louis, MO and has trained under Michael Uthoff, Alicia Graf Mack, Maggie Dueker, John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow. He attended the summer programs of Nashville Ballet, Charlotte Ballet, Body Traffic, Arts Umbrella/Ballet BC and Springboard Danse Montreal receiving full scholarships, second company and apprenticeship offers. During these programs, he has performed the works of Dwight Rhoden, Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux and Patrica McBride, Hofesh Shechter, Cystal Pite, Robin Mineko-Williams, William Forsyth, Matts Ek and Jiri Kylian. While at Webster University, Prince performed the works of José Limon, Michael Uthoff, RAWDanceSF, and Antony Tudor while further freelance dancing with choreographers Kameron N. Saunders, Diane McIntyre, Matthew Rushing, Anthony "REDD" Williams and Antonio and Kirven Douthit-Boyd. Prince graduated Webster University in 2017 with a BFA in Dance, cum laude, with an emphasis in ballet. He is currently a dancer with Visceral Dance Chicago. This is Prince’s first year dancing with The Cambrians.

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Chicago Dances 2019 Apprentices


Chicago Dances 2019 Apprentices


Chicago Dances 2019 Apprentices

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Asha


Asha


Asha Benjelloun

Asha Benjellous began her formal dance training at Pennsylvania Regional Ballet in Enola, PA. She continued her training at Lines Ballet Training Program where she performed works by David Harvey, Shannon Gillen, Maurya Kerr, and Gregory Dawson, among others. Upon graduation in 2016, Asha joined Maurya Kerr’s tinypistol and freelanced in the Bay Area with companies such as Robert Moses’ Kin and dawsondancesf. Currently, she is dancing with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago’s Professional Program. This is Asha’s first year apprenticing with The Cambrians.

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Margo


Margo


Margaret ‘margo’ Korn

Margaret “Margo” Korn began her pre-professional training at Expressenz Dance Center in Indianapolis, IN. Margo earned her BFA in Dance, alongside a BA in Health and Human Physiology, from the University of Iowa in May 2018. In her time at the University she had the opportunity to perform in works by Melinda Myers, Christopher Rasheem-McMillan, Rennie Harris, Jennifer Kayle, Armando Duarte,  Autumn Eckman, and Marc Macaranas. Margo has spent summers with various programs around the Midwest including: The Cambrians, DanceWorks Chicago, the Jordan Academy of Dance, Ballet Met, and the Joffrey Ballet. Since graduation, Margo has joined the Chicago dance community and has accepted a work-study position with Lou Conte Dance Studio. This is Margo’s first year apprenticing with The Cambrians.

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The Cambrians Global


The Cambrians Global


The Cambrians – global

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Ariel


Ariel


Ariel Freedman

Ariel Freedman earned her BFA at The Juilliard School, where she was a recipient of the Martha Hill Prize. After graduating, she performed with Aszure Barton’s AszURe & Artists, Mikhail Baryshnikov’s Hell’s Kitchen Dance, and David Parker and the The Bang Group. She danced with the Batsheva Ensemble for two seasons and with the Batsheva Dance Company for three. She began teaching Gaga, the movement language of Ohad Naharin, and Naharin’s repertory in 2007, and has performed with Crystal Pite’s Kidd Pivot, Motley Dance, Keigwin + Company, Zack Winokur and Michelle Mola/ The Troupe in collaboration with the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), Liz Magic Laser, Noa Zuk, Idan Sharabi and Dancers, Talia Beck, Helen Simoneau Danse, zoe | juniper and Roy Assaf.

Ariel is paired with Meredith in Empress Archer, which will premiered in January 2017. 

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Autumn


Autumn


Autumn Eckman

Autumn Eckman (Atlanta, GA) received her classical training from the Houston Ballet Academy. As a member of the Cambrians, Autumn is a performer, choreographer and intensive instructor. Her performance career began with Giordano Dance Chicago before dancing with companies including Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Luna Negra Dance Theatre, Lucky Plush Productions, Ron De Jesus Dance and the State Street Ballet in Santa Barbara, CA. With over 20 years of experience in diverse movement techniques and practices, she has formulated an integrated approach to her own ways of dance making, performance and teaching. From 2009-2014 she served as Assistant Artistic Director of Giordano Dance Chicago and Director of its second company, Giordano II. As Giordano’s Resident Choreographer, she created nine original works for the company including JOLT which was recognized by Dance Magazine as a top choreographic pick of 2012. Autumn has also served as Artist-In-Residence for State Street Ballet and choreographed for DanceWorks Chicago, Big Muddy Dance Co., Wylliams- Henry Dance Company, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, Western Michigan University, Grand Valley State University, University of Wisconsin- Stevens Point and the University of Missouri- Kansas City as an awarded of their 2013 Choreographic Fellowship. Her work has been presented at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the Bates Dance Festival, Jazz Dance World Congress, Midwest RAD Festival, Florida Dance Festival and Kalamazoo Michigan’s Aesthetic Research and Education Program (KRESA). Her work has earned her recognition as a ‘Top Player in the Arts’ by Chicago’s NewCity Publication, a ‘Top 10 Choreographer’ in the Chicago Tribune and an awardee of ‘New Choreographic Voice for Dance Chicago. From 2009-2015, she was an Instructor of Dance at Northern Illinois University and has been a faculty member of Hubbard Street’s Lou Conte Dance Studio, Visceral Dance Center, State Street Ballet Summer Intensive, Florida Dance Festival, Summer Dance Lab (Walla Walla, WA) and the Bates Dance Festival’s Young Dancers and Professional Division. Autumn is an Iowa Arts Fellow at the University of Iowa’s MFA in Choreography Track program. Upon graduation in May of 2017, she looks forward to the next step in her career as a teacher and mentor to the next generation of dance artists.  

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Jamy


Jamy


Jamy Meek

Jamy Meek is a dancer and performer from Lubbock, Texas who has traveled extensively throughout the United States and Europe. He has performed works by Jiri Kylian, Ohad Naharin, Nacho Duato, Margo Sappington, Danny Ezralow, Marguerite Donlon, William Forsythe and Twyla Tharp among countless others.

During his thirteen year career at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago – then his three year career at Nederlands Dans Theater – Jamy has developed an understanding and gained experience in the different approaches to dancing works created by European and American master choreographers, as well as being able to enlighten audiences with a relaxed approach of humor and character work. He is also an experienced teacher and coach and has taught master classes in ballet and jazz throughout the United States.

With The Cambrians, Jamy was paired with Autumn as a performer in The Losers.

Currently, he is appearing in the ensemble of The Goodman Theatre Chicago’s production of Brigadoon. Jamy holds a BFA in dance performance from Oklahoma City University where he performed in various musicals including Oklahoma! (dream Curly), Guys and Dolls, and Anything Goes.

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Jonathan Alsberry


Jonathan Alsberry


Jonathan Alsberry

Jonathan Emanuell Alsberry is a dance educator, creator and coach focused on inspiring excellence and joy in the study of Ballet, Jazz, and Modern techniques with a constant dedication to the exploration of artistry and the creative process. Born in Normal, IL he began dancing with his mother Lyndetta and went on to graduate from The Chicago Academy for the Arts where he has since been guest faculty and created over a dozen dances for the school and company. In 2006 he received his Bachelors of Fine Arts from The Juilliard School where he met Aszure Barton. Jonathan a.k.a “Jojo” is now dancer, rehearsal director, and creative collaborator with Aszure Barton & Artists and has assisted Ms. Barton in over a dozen creations including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Bayerische Staatsballett and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Jonathan has performed for Prince Edward III in Banff, Canada, and shared two tours with Mikhail Baryshnikov’s Hell’s Kitchen Dance as well as Evolution with Alessandra Ferri and Herman Cornejo. Jonathan has performed as a principal dancer with The Metropolitan Opera, The Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Chicago Opera Theater. In 2007 Jonathan joined the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company and is currently performer and rehearsal director with the company. Other credits include Daniel Gwirtzman Dance Company, Luna Negra Dance Theater, Nilas Martins Dance Company, and Eisenhower Dance Ensemble. He has worked independently with Randy Duncan, MTV. Since 2007 Jonathan has been teaching, coaching and creating work at various educational institutions including Harvard University, Lou Conte Dance Studio, The National Ballet School, and Ballet Hispanico.  

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Mindy


Mindy


Melinda Jean Myers

Melinda Jean Myers (Mindy) is a dance artist and choreographer currently working and residing in Chicago, Illinois. Along with teaching dance classes and performing with Lucky Plush Productions (Cinderbox 2.0 and The Queue), she creates interdisciplinary ensemble works and one woman cabarets. She received her MFA from University of Iowa (2012, choreography emphasis), and her BFA from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts (2005). She was honored to perform and teach internationally with the Trisha Brown Dance Company for four years (2006-2010) and currently re-stages their repertory and teaches master classes.

Since her move to Chicago in the fall of 2012, Mindy has presented her work at Harvest Chicago Contemporary Dance Festival, D49 Festival, and shared an evening with The Nexus Project: Installment I at Hamlin Park Fieldhouse. She also produced her one woman cabaret, greatBIGworld, through High Concept Laboratories' Sponsored Artist program at Mana Contemporary. Her choreographic works have been presented in South Korea, Germany, New York City and throughout the Midwest.

With The Cambrians, Mindy is the principle choreographer of Clover, in which she also performs with Michel and Ben.

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Meredith


Meredith


Meredith Webster

Meredith Webster grew up in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, studying dance under Jean Wolfmeyer, and received further training at the Harid Conservatory and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. She then worked with Sonia Dawkins and Donald Byrd in Seattle, and earned a BS in Environmental Science from the University of Washington before moving to San Francisco to work with Alonzo King LINES Ballet. In her nine seasons as a dancer with the company, Webster performed and originated many central roles, received a Princess Grace Award, and guested at gala events around the world. In August 2014, she moved into the role of Ballet Master. In 2015 she performed INCOGNITO, a duet with Ledoh/Salt Farm as part of the SF International Arts Festival at Fort Mason, and worked with Maureen Whiting Company on Burden of Joy.

Meredith has served as a faculty member for the LINES Ballet BFA, Training, and Summer Programs, and as a guest teacher at Pacific Northwest Ballet School, George Mason University, Cornish College of the Arts, Spectrum Dance Theater, and Dancers’ Workshop in Jackson, WY. She has contributed as writer to Dance Spirit and Conversations.

Meredith performed in Empress Archer with The Cambrians in 2017. 

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Michel


Michel


Michel Rodriguez Cintra

Michel [mee-CHEL] Rodriguez Cintra is a Cuban born dancer, teacher and choreographer. He graduated from Escuela Nacional de Arte (National School of Arts) in Havana, Cuba. Upon graduation he was chosen to join Danza Contemporanea de Cuba where he became Principal Dancer and toured internationally. He has premiered works by choreographers Jan Linkens, Cathy Marston, Rafael Bonachela, Luca Bruni and George Cespedes.

After moving to Chicago in 2008, Michel started dancing with Hedwig Dances, where he performed works by Susan Marshall and Andrea Miller in addition to choreographing his own works on the company. Recently, Michel became an ensemble member with Lucky Plush Productions and has been seen as a guest artist in numerous dance companies and projects in Chicago including Khecari and Chicago Moving Company. Michel serves as an adjunct faculty member at The Dance Center of Columbia College, teaching modern dance technique.

In 2010, Michel was a finalist of the A.W.A.R.D. Show Chicago with his work Moi Aussi and was named one of The Men of 2010 in dance by Timeout Chicago. In October 2013, he was the recipient of the prestigious 3Arts Award and was featured in Dance Magazine’s 25 to watch 2014.

Michel is paired with Ben in The Nexus Project and performs in Clover with Ben and Mindy.

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