The KSU Dance Company
The KSU Dance Company is a pre-professional dance company that performs on campus, regionally and nationally. Students who major or minor in dance have the opportunity to audition at the beginning of each semester (fall/spring) to be a part of the company. The mission of the KSU Dance Company is to bring concert dance to the community, as well as serve the mission of education in dance through its outreach programs. Every year the company tours regional venues, performing and educating students about dance as a performing art. Through this outreach program, students in the company gain valuable touring experience while serving an important community mission. Members of the KSU Dance Company receive academic credit for performing in season concerts, informal concerts, as well as in community partner projects. Through a variety of performance opportunities, it is our goal to also provide students with practical production experiences that extend to the areas of design and stage management.
Fall 2015 KSU Dance Company
Hannah Alexander began her study of dance with Gene Weaver of Dance Arts Studio of Macon, Georgia. She then refined her talent under the direction of Georne Aucoin with International City School of Ballet in Warner Robins, Georgia. While at ICSB, Hannah performed and competed in Youth American Grand Prix, Alvin Ailey, San Francisco Conservatory of Dance and various other dance festivals. In addition to performing on the stage, Hannah enjoys choreographing working with various high school solo and ensemble performers. Upon graduation from Kennesaw State, Hannah plans to attend Florida State University to study Dance Therapy.
Emily has been dancing for 17 years. Before coming to KSU, she studied at Studio Dance Academy in Athens for 3 years. This is Emily’s fourth semester in the KSU Dance Company. She is very excited to be in a piece this semester choreographed by Professor McCree O’Kelley.
Shakira Bell has danced since the age of four concentrating in ballet, modern, and contemporary. She has participated in several intensives such as Governors Honors Program, Regional and National Dance Festivals, and the Ailey intensive. She has also worked with many guests such as Lonnie Davis, Dawn Axam, Eisenhower Dance Ensemble, and Paul Taylor Dance Company. She has made many achievements such as receiving scholarship awards, lead roles, and most recently joining the KSU Dance Company.
Khy is a senior Political Science major with three minors: Business Management, Dance, and Leadership Studies. He have been dancing for five years now and is excited to finish his time here with the KSU Dance Company with Dr. Ivan Pulinkala.
Brian Crosby is entering his second year at Kennesaw State University. With a concentration in modern, Brian is intent on bringing his athleticism and artistry to KSU. Brian is excitedly anticipating returning to KSU's Dance Company.
Maura is in her junior year at KSU and is excited to be in her fourth semester in the KSU Dance Company. Prior to her enrollment at KSU as a dance major, Maura danced for Champaign-Urbana Ballet in Illinois for five years.
Coming from a military family, Erin’s dance training has been influenced by a variety of locations; however, she began to seriously focus her training during high school at Ron Jones’ Academy of Ballet. After high school, Erin took a 10-year break from dance to pursue other opportunities outside of dance. She returned to pursue a dance degree at Kennesaw State University in the fall of 2014 and is thrilled to have the opportunity to perform with the KSU Dance Company this fall.
Ashley is a Junior dance major at Kennesaw State University. She began dancing at the age of five, and this is her second semester performing with the KSU Dance Company. Ashley feels blessed for this wonderful opportunity to grow as a dancer.
Lily Greene is originally from Clarkesville, Georgia. She is a senior at Kennesaw State University majoring in dance with a ballet concentration. After graduation, she hopes to develop her own dance studio and later create her own dance company.
Sarah Gunter is a freshman double majoring in Dance and Biology. She has been dancing since the age of four and most recently trained at Atlanta Academy of Ballet and Dance. Beyond dancing, Sarah greatly enjoys reading and volunteering wth different local organizations and at her church.
Bailey is currently a freshman dance major at Kennesaw and a member of the THRIVE program. For the past 10 years, she has attended the Buford School of Ballet in Buford, Georgia, where she trained in classical ballet and modern dance. This is her first semester with the company, and she is thrilled to have the opportunity to perform, as well as continue seeking a fulfilling path in dance at the university.
In her third year as a KSU dance major and fifth time participating in the KSU Dance Company, Madeleine is extremely excited to work with a new artist and choreographer. She danced from age 3-18 at the Georgia Dance Conservatory on the Marietta Square, as well as the Atlanta Chinese Dance Company. This fall, she'll be working with Christine Welker for the big TEN and cannot wait to see what's in store for the performance in November.
This is Margot Harris’s fourth semester in KSU’s Dance Company. Prior to attending KSU, she danced at Cartersville School of Ballet. Margot is excited to be in company this semester.
Breanna Hayworth is a sophomore at KSU. She is currently studying Dance and Business Management. Breanna has been dancing for 15 years and has recently studied with Sawnee School of Ballet. She has also performed in Refract and Baka. Breanna is the current secretary for Nu Delta Alpha and is excited to be in her third consecutive semester with Kennesaw's Dance Company.
Though he has not been dancing long, Brandon grew up in theatre and has always been passionate about performing arts. Originally from Tampa, FL, Brandon moved to Georgia in 2012 and began his undergraduate dance degree at KSU in 2014. After graduation, Brandon hopes to continue his dance education and career by earning a master's degree from NYU Tisch School of the Arts and dance/choreograph professionally.
Payton Horton is a sophomore majoring in Dance and Project Management. She has been dancing for 16 years and trained previously at International City School of Ballet with Genore Aucoin. This is her second year at KSU Dance.
Gretchen Hughes is a senior at Kennesaw State University this year with a major in dance concentrated in ballet. She has been dancing for 18 years. This is her 4th time in the KSU Dance Company, and she is very excited to participate again.
Sam Ingram is currently a sophomore dance major at KSU. Other than dance, he also participates in colorguard and winterguard activities and has spent his last three summers marching drum corps.
Jetta Kaimachiande is a junior Nursing major and dance minor from Riverdale, Ga. She trained at N Motion Dance and Price Performing Arts and has been involved in programs such as Joffrey Ballet Summer Intensive, LA Tap Fest, DC Tap Fest , and the Commonality/PPAC scholarship. She hopes to one day dance professionally and also care for people worldwide through travel nursing.
Christina Kelly has lived in Georgia her entire life, but through her time with the KSU dance program, she has had the opportunity to perform in a one night benefit with Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas and in a six week exhibition in Central Park. Both of these works were with the Atlanta based performance company GloATL. This will be her fourth semester with the KSU Dance Company, and she is looking forward to see what challenges this year will bring.
Amber Kirchner is 18 years old from Woodstock, Georgia and has been dancing for 15 years with training in the genres of ballet, tap, jazz, modern, lyrical, contemporary, and hip hop. In addition to her studio training and competitive dancing, she was also a Company member for 4 years in Blessed Trinity Catholic High School's Dance Department and a member of their Dance Team. Amber has also studied dance in New York City and Chicago over her summer breaks. She is now beginning her new journey training as a dance major in Kennesaw State University's Dance Company.
Amber is a Junior and a 3rd year KSU Dance Company member. She is very excited to be performing under Christine Welker again this year.
Jeleesa started her dance training at the young age of three and has always had a passion for dance and performance. After graduating from Georgia State University with a bachelors degree in journalism, she is now continuing her dance education at Kennesaw. Jeleesa is very excited to be a part of the KSU Dance Company this season!
Kirklyn is a sophomore at KSU and majors in dance with a concentration in ballet. Prior to Kennesaw, she trained at Fleetwood Dance Center in Alpharetta, Ga. This is her second semester in the KSU Dance Company and she is thrilled to be a part of it again.
Christina Massad is entering her sophomore year as a Dance Major at KSU, and this will be her third semester in the KSU Dance Company. Christina has been dancing since she was 3 and has trained in all different genres of dance, including 9 styles of ballroom. She is a dance teacher and substitute dance teacher for local studios. Christina is extremely excited about her opportunities within company this semester and is looking forward to her growth as a dancer.
Bekah O'Toole is a junior at Kennesaw State University majoring in dance with a concentration in modern. She began dancing at the age of five, training in many different styles of dance. This is her fifth consecutive semester performing with the KSU Dance Company, and she looks forward to having the opportunity to perform with them once again.
Angelina Pellini is a sophomore, double majoring in Dance and Accounting. This is her third semester working with the KSU Dance Company, but her first time performing as she had the pleasure of working backstage on the Production Crew in the past two semesters. She has been dancing for sixteen years and received most of her prior dance training at Cumming Ballet Theatre (Cumming, GA). Angelina is also an active member and the Historian of Nu Delta Alpha. She is very honored to be cast in McCree O'Kelley's work and is excited to be representing KSU Dance in its tenth year!
Michaela Perdue is a sophomore at KSU and is a Dance Major. This is her third semester participating in the KSU Dance Company, and she is also a member of Nu Delta Alpha. She has previously danced with Studio D School of Dance.
Born and raised in Macon, GA, Simon is a first year senior majoring in both dance and psychology. This is his 6th and final semester performing with the KSU Dance Company, having the opportunity to serve as company president last year. He is thankful for the experience to grow physically and artistically during his time at KSU.
Kelly Rayborn has been a classically trained dancer for the past 10 years and is versatile in Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Contemporary, and Hip Hop. Kelly danced with Southern Ballet Theatre company, under the direction of Phyllis Allen for 8 years, and the last 2 years, she has danced with Gainesville Ballet Company, under the direction of Diane Callahan. She has performed in many classical ballets and contemporary works that included many soloist and partnering roles. Kelly has attended several summer programs including American Ballet Theatre and Atlanta Ballet and has also been a regular attendee of SERBA (South Eastern Regional Ballet Association) Festivals and has been honored to perform there several times. Kelly is thrilled to begin her first season with the KSU Dance Company.
Zaleigh Richardson is from Lakeland, Florida where she attended Harrison School for the Performing Arts. There she trained in ballet, pointe, and modern. Zaleigh is in her second year as a dance major concentrating in modern. She is intrigued with contemporary styles and is eager to collaborate with Dr. Ivan Pulinkala on his new work this fall semester. She is excited to learn all she can from this opportunity with the KSU Dance Company.
Meghan Roberts is thrilled to be performing with the KSU Dance Company for her seventh consecutive semester. Meghan is a senior with a double major in dance and communications with a concentration in journalism. She is proud to have called KSU Dance home for the last three years and looks forward to continuing her artistic and scholarly growth in her senior year.
Isaac Rose stopped taking dance classes at age 5 to play soccer, but the dance in him never really left. As a rising junior at Wheeler High Shool, Rose began taking classes again and was motivated to enroll at a local Kennesaw competition studio after seeing SYTYCD. Since then his world has transformed, body, mind, soul, and interpersonally, through immersing himself heavily in the modern dance world and other dance styles. Isaac has danced extensively in the Atlanta area, especially in the Atlanta University Center, with choreographers Daryl L. Foster, T. Lang, George Staib, among others. Lastly, he would like to shout out to Momma Rose for keeping it real through the years.
Olivia Rowe is a sophomore at Kennesaw State and is majoring in dance with a concentration in modern. She most recently trained in American Ballet Theatre curriculum at Atlanta Academy of Ballet as a professional trainee. Olivia has also trained with Nashville Ballet and BalletMet Columbus. She is so excited to perform in her first semester as a KSU Dance Company member!
Jordan Slaton danced at Atlanta South Dance Academy for 12 years, then transferred to Dance Contempra where she was put in the senior company. She has taken intensives with Alvin Ailey, Ballet Magnificat, and the Joffrey Ballet. Jordan has also done tap competitions and performed in Ballet Fest and Jazz on Tap.
Simone Stevens is a Dance Major with a concentration in modern and Anthropology minor at Kennesaw State University. This semester marks her fourth successive participation with the KSU Dance Company, and she is very grateful for the opportunity to work with Dr. Ivan Pulinkala this fall in preparation for the ten year anniversary concert. Simone could not be more excited to see what is in store for this upcoming season.
Stacy Stiltner is currently a junior dance major at Kennesaw State University. She is delighted to say that this is her third semester being a part of the KSU Dance Company. When she's not at school or rehearsal, she also teaches dance at The Dance Factory Inc.
William VanMeter began his journey in dance with Dance Contempra of Peachtree City, Georgia in 2011. Since starting his dance career at age 16, he has attended multiple summer intensives on full scholarship such as Joffery Ballet NYC and Atlanta Ballet. Will plans to audition for a professional contemporary ballet company after graduation, and eventually open his own dance company.
Calla is a sophomore at KSU. She is a dance major with a concentration in ballet and is in the KSU Dance Company for the second semester. Prior to attending KSU, Calla attended the Madison Studio of Dance Education for 8 years.
Grace is a sophomore at KSU, and this is her third semester in the KSU Dance Company. She is a member of Nu Delta Alpha. Prior to attending KSU, Grace trained at The Creative Arts Guild: Ballet Dalton for seven years.
Claire Weed is from Duluth, Georgia and has been dancing for 15 years. She comes from a competitive background, performing various styles such as ballet, contemporary, hip hop, jazz, and, her favorite, lyrical. Claire looks forward to being a part of KSU Dance Company this semester and can't wait to perform with everyone!
This is Julia's fourth semester working with the KSU Dance Company. This is her senior year, and she is majoring in dance with a concentration in modern dance. She currently teaches dance at Global Dance in Roswell, Georgia.
Emily is a sophomore at KSU and is majoring in dance and communications. She has been dancing since she was 4 years old at Dancentre South in Woodstock, GA. She is excited to be in the KSU Dance Company for the second time.
Jalesa is a dance minor and has been dancing since she was 8 years old. She has danced with the Cutno Dance Performing Ensemble and Magnolia Dance Theater, director Ferneasa Cutno as well as Dance Augusta under the direction of Zanne Colton, Augusta Ballet School. After college, Jalesa plans on pursuing a doctorate degree in physical therapy.
Hannah is a senior at Kennesaw State University, and this is her third semester performing in the KSU Dance Company. She studied at Murphy Dance Studio for seventeen years, received training at Darton State College, and performed with Ballet Theatre South for 12 years. She is a member of NDA, and her passion is to dance for the glory of God.
Fall 2015 Production Crew
Emmi Creamer is a freshman dance major at Kennesaw State University. She grew up dancing in the company of Buford School of Ballet. Emmi is super excited to be a part of the production class for her first show at KSU!
Teresa Eckhart took ballet when she was younger and through college years. She completed grad school, got married, and raised a son. Mrs. Eckhart began ballet again recently and then decided to teach ballet. She loves ballet and enjoys kids of all ages. She is a dance major at KSU.
Yewon Hwang is a junior and in her fourth semester as a dance major (ballet concentration). This will be Yewon’s first time being a part of concert crew, and she is so excited to be a part of this amazing team!
Sarah Hyde is embarking on her Sophomore year as a College of the Arts student and continuing the exciting journey as a dance major here at Kennesaw State University. She trained for a decade in dance at Steps of Faith Dance Studio in her hometown of Cartersville, Georgia. Sarah is looking forward to becoming a more well-rounded performer by learning the intricacies of production this semester.
Sicily is a senior pursuing a dance major at Kennesaw State University and is a member of the KSU Honors College. She is the President of Nu Delta Alpha, the KSU Chapter of the National Dance Honors Society. Sicily works at Cumming Dance Academy as a dance instructor and the Director of Community Outreach. She also recently founded the projectENCORE Organization.
Christy Neal is a dance major at Kennesaw State University. Her dance training began at the Duluth School of Ballet and continued at Perimeter Ballet and Collins Hill High School. At Collins Hill, Christy was an avid member of Nu Delta Alpha and is continuing her membership here at Kennesaw.
ReAnna Newlon is 23 years old and a junior at Kennesaw State University. She plans to audition to become a dance major. At 8 years of age, ReAnna first began dancing under her mother at Judah Dance Company where she learned my ballet and modern techniques and has continued ever since.
Phillecia Rayshaun Davis was born in Berkeley, California and transferred to KSU in the Spring 2015. She is a Theatre Production major concentrating in Directing. Phillecia is passionate about Performing Arts and is hoping to gain adequate training from the KSU Department of Dance.
Emily Tomasi has been dancing since she was three years old. She is going into her senior year at KSU majoring in Dance and Psychology. She has been in KSU’s Dance Company three times and is looking forward to her fourth, working in dance production!
Cara Watkins is a junior at Kennesaw and has enjoyed being on the stage two years in a row with the Kennesaw State Dance Company. This year, she will literally be learning the ropes backstage to make the show happen.