Faculty and Staff

  • Ivan Pulinkala

    Ivan Pulinkala Dean of the College of the Arts and Professor of Dance

    Ivan PulinkalaPosition:
    Dean of the College of the Arts and Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-6742
    Email: ipulinka@kennesaw.edu
    Location: WB 204

    Ed.D. Higher Education Administration, Univ. of Alabama
    M.F.A. Dance, Mills College
    B.Com (H), Delhi University
    Areas of Emphasis: Choreography, Contemporary Technique, History/Theory, Kinesiology

    Ivan Pulinkala founded the dance program at Kennesaw State University in 2005, and serves as the Dean of the College of the Arts. He received his Doctorate in Higher Education Administration from the University of Alabama, his M.F.A in Dance from Mills College, Oakland, Calif., and his Bachelor of Commerce (Hon.) from Hindu College, Delhi University. Originally from New Delhi, Pulinkala has worked professionally in the field of dance and musical theatre both in India and the U.S. His choreographic work has been commissioned for concert dance, musical theatre, as well as corporate and commercial film. While in India, Pulinkala served as the artistic director of his own company, performing and choreographing across the country. He served as the choreographer-in-residence for Delhi Music Theatre, and was named among the 25 Indian artists of the Millennium by the India Today Magazine in their December 1999 issue.

    Pulinkala was selected for the Accelerated Leadership Academy at the University System of Georgia in 2017, the Executive Leadership Institute at the University system of Georgia in 2013, awarded the KSU Foundation Award in 2011, the Clendenin Graduate Fellowship at KSU in 2010, 2011 and 2012, the NEA American Masterpiece Grant in 2010, the Cobb Symphony Orchestra Award for Artistic Excellence in 2010 and the Board of Regents award for Teaching Excellence from Murray State University in 2005. He was also commissioned by the Tony award winning Alliance Theatre to choreograph their 2008 production of "Eurydice." Pulinkala has received arts grants both in India and the U.S. for his work, and has served as a guest artist for a number of professional companies and university programs. Past choreographic commissions include work for The Israel Ballet (Tel Aviv, Israel) Atlanta Ballet (Atlanta, GA) Fresco (Tel Aviv, Israel).

    The KSU Department of Dance has received regional and national attention for Pulinkala's choreographic work at the American College Dance Associationl (ACDA.) He is the only choreographer in the history of ACDA to have work selected for 3 successive national festivals. In 2008, "INCUBUS" choreographed by Pulinkala, was performed at the National Festival held at the Miller Theatre in New York City. In 2010, Pulinkala's work "CHAKRA" was performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. In 2012, Pulinkala and the KSU Dance Company returned to the Kennedy Center with "Rhizome." Pulinkala's work has also been selected for the ACDF Regional Gala Concerts in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2012.

    Guest Artist Residencies

    Pulinkala has choreographed and taught for a number of professional companies, colleges and arts organizations:

    Henny Jurriens Foundation (2016), Israel Ballet (2015) Atlanta Ballet - Wabi Sabi (2014) FRESCO Dance Company, Israel (2013) Rialto Center for the Arts (2010, 2011, 2013) Washington University in St. Louis (2009, 2012) Brigham Young University (2011, 2013) Georgia Shakespeare (2011) gloATL (2010) Shanghai Normal University (2010) Atlanta Ballet (2006, 2007, 2009, 2010) University of South Carolina (2008) Nirvana Films (2007) Governor's School for the Arts, Tennessee (2006, 2008) The Dancer's Studio (2007) Middle Tennessee State University (2005-2007) Atlanta Gay Men's Chorus (2007, 2008) Spelman College (2006) Modern Atlanta Dance Festival (2006, 2007) Decatur Arts Festival (2006) Shanghai International Theatre Festival (2005) Shelter Repertory Dance Company (2005) Full Radius Dance Company (2005) Murray State University (2001-2005) Western Kentucky University (2004) Danceworx (2004, 2009) Vanderbilt University (2003, 2004) U.C. Berkley (2004) Mills College (2004) Contemporary Dance Exchange of Nashville (2003-2005) University of Tennessee at Martin (2003) American College Dance Festival (2004-2012) City Lights Youth Theatre (2001) Delhi Music Theatre (1994-2002) American Embassy School (1997-2002) St. George's College (1994, 1995)


    Clendenin Graduate Fellowship 2010, 2011, 2012; KSU Foundation Award 2011; KSU College of the Arts Distinguished Research and Creative Activity Award 2011; Cobb Symphony Orchestra Award for Artistic Excellence 2010; NEA American Masterpiece Grant 2010-11; Board of Regents Teaching Excellence Award 2005 (Murray State University); KSU Faculty Incentive Grant 2006-07; Faculty Teaching Development Grant; Faculty Professional Development Grant; Committee on Institutional Studies and Research Grant; Individual Artist Fellowship Program Grant at the Kentucky Arts Council; Middle Tennessee State University International Guest Artist Grant.


    Original Modern works include: Metamorphosis (2017), 2.0 (2016), 1.0 (2015), Hypnophobia (2015), Ipomoea (2015), Rinpoche (2014), PYROMANIA (2014), TOUCHDOWN (2013), Road Kill (2017, 2012), Rhizome (2011), Cocoon (2010), Lost (2010), Chakra (2009), Succubus (2009), Magnetic Fields (2009), Metastasis (2009), Incubus (2008), Hyperspace (2007), A Dream Discarded (2007), Cloud Burst (2006), Firestorm (2005), Migration (2004), No Way Out (2003), Inside My Twisted Mind (2004), Mock Abduction (2002), Touch Down (2004), Secret Garden (2003), To Be Baptized (2003), Passages (2003), Coffee Break (2003), As Time Moves On (2003), Popcorn Suite (2002), Dirty Business (2002), Offerings (2003), A New World (2002), Cycle (2002), Geometric Relationships (2001), Second Construction (2001), Slow (2000) among others.

    Professional musical theatre choreography/ performance credits include: Tommy, The Music Man, West Side Story, Grease, Best Friends, Evita, Fame- the musical, Me and My Girl, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat among others.


    Partnering for Change in Dance Higher Education (2014) (Research in Dance Education)
    Integration of a Professional Dance into College (2011) (Research in Dance Education)
    The Sensuality of Indian Movement (2009) (www.artconcerns.com) Print 2010/ Online 2009
    Polyphonic Dynamics as Educational Practice (Co-authored with Karen Robinson and Ming Chen) Theatre Topics (2010)

    Professional Affiliations: ArtsATL.com Board, Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta-Arts Fund; Community Committee, Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center Artsbridge Educational Board

    Read more about Ivan Pulinkala by visiting www.ivanpulinkala.com

  • Marsha Barsky

    Marsha Barsky Chair of the Department of Dance and Associate Professor of Dance

    Marsha BarskyPosition:
    Chair of the Department of Dance and Associate Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-7620
    Email: mbarsky@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306O

    Marsha Barsky is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Dance at KSU.  She has 20 years of experience fostering and implementing creative and educational programs for both the public and private sectors. She is a lifelong learner, who continues to hone her craft by engaging widely with contemporary approaches to dance, somatics, and holistic wellness for dancers and non-dancers. She brings insights from her ongoing research to awaken creative well-being and enliven mindful movement practices.

    From 2008-2018, she served as director and choreographer for Nashville-based Company Rose. The company presented works at the Frist Art Museum, and performed in venues throughout the Southeastern region. In 2019, she received a Tennessee Arts Commission Individual Fellowship Award for her choreography. As a dancer, she has performed with the Desert Dance Theatre and Shelter Repertory Dance Theatre, and in works by Isadora Duncan, Stefanie Batton-Bland, Sean Curren, Bill Evans Pat Graney, Gabriel Masson, Ana Baer, Kim Neal Nofsinger, Ivan Pulinkala and Katherine Duke.  

    Previously, Marsha was an Associate Professor and Director of Dance at Middle Tennessee State University, where she developed Tennessee's first bachelor’s degree in Dance, and prior to that she was the Director of the Vanderbilt University Dance Program. She has taught at numerous venues, festivals and conferences throughout the US, and in Canada, France, Switzerland and Spain. In 2017, she was named Foreign Expert in Dance at Chengdu University, China, and in May 2020 she served as a visiting scholar at the Kroeger College of Public Affairs at Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada.

    Marsha received her BFA in Dance from Arizona State University, and her MFA in Performance, Choreography and Somatics from the University of Colorado at Boulder. In 2002, she was certified at the ShambhavAnanda Eldorado yoga teacher training in Boulder, Colorado. In 2011, she graduated from the North Carolina Alexander Technique Program (under the direction of Robin Gilmore), and in 2019 she completed her Gyrokinesis® certification in Münstertal, Germany.

  • McCree O'Kelley

    McCree O'Kelley Associate Professor of Dance

    McCree OPosition:
    Associate Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-7682
    Email: dokelle4@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306K

    McCree O'Kelley is an Assistant Professor at Kennesaw State University. He began his ballet training with Ann Brodie and the Carolina Ballet in Columbia, SC. At 16, he moved to New York City, accepting a full scholarship to the School of American Ballet. He furthered his dance training at the North Carolina School of the Arts studying with Duncan Noble, Melissa Hayden and Warren Conover.

    His versatile career as a professional dancer included performing with the Atlanta Ballet, the Metropolitan Opera Ballet, and the Broadway National Tour of Cats as Mr. Mistoffelees. His vast repertoire includes Balanchine's Serenade (Waltz Man), Allegro Brillante, Rubies, Who Cares, Stars and Stripes, Western Symphony, Lila York's Celts (Green Man) and Gloria, Kevin O'Day's Viola Alone...(with one exception), Lynne Taylor-Corbett's Great Galloping Gottschalk (Men's Duet), Twyla Tharp's Deuce Coupe, Alan Hineline's Twist and Thresholds, Martha Graham's Diversion of Angels (Red Man), Val Caniparoli's Open Veins, Lew Christensen's Con Amore, Ben Stevenson's Cinderella and Alice in Wonderland and Michael Pink's Dracula and Hunchback of Notre Dame.

    As a choreographer he has created works for the KSU Dance Company, Pacific Symphony, Alliance Theater, Trainees of Cincinnati Ballet, Ballet Spartanburg, Carolina Ballet, Ballet Southeast, Atlanta Dance Theater, Dance Converse, Theater Converse, Center Stage and Workshop Theater of South Carolina. In 2016 he was selected as one of four finalists for Ballet Arkansas's choreographic competition, Visions. In 2016 and 2018 his works were selected to be performed in the New Voices Concert at the Alabama Dance Festival. In 2019 his work Pariah was selected for Off the EDGE and was performed by the KSU Dance Company at the Rialto Center for the Arts.

    McCree recently served as Interim Chair of the Department of Dance at Kennesaw State University. Previously, he was an assistant professor of dance at Converse College in Spartanburg, SC, where he was the artistic director of Dance Converse. He has served on the faculty of the American Academy of Ballet, the University of South Carolina Conservatory of Dance, the Atlanta Ballet Summer Program, Ballet Spartanburg and the University of California, Irvine. He holds a BA in Dance from the University of South Carolina and an MFA in Dance from the University of CA, Irvine.

  • Lisa Koepfer Lock

    Lisa Koepfer Lock Artistic Director and Associate Professor of Dance

    Lisa K LockPosition:
    Artistic Director and Associate Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-7961
    Email: llock1@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306M

    B.F.A and M.F.A. Ballet, California Institute of the Arts and Ballet Diploma, Grande Ecole de Danse, Bern, Switzerland
    Areas of Emphasis: Modern Dance, Body Conditioning

    Lisa K. Lock is an Assistant Professor of Dance at Kennesaw State University, where she teaches Modern, Ballet, Improvisation and Choreography.

    As a solo artist, Lisa has performed her critically-acclaimed choreography internationally, as well as all over the U.S. Choreography for companies include: La Danserie in Los Angeles, Georgia Ballet, and Full Radius Dance in Atlanta, Cleveland Opera, Verb Ballets, Ohio Dance Theater, Dancing Wheels, and the former Cleveland Dance Theater in Ohio.

    Lisa comes with many years of teaching experience both in the University system and the private studio setting. Recent festivals and intensive workshop teaching include: Complexion Contemporary Ballet, the International Ballet Intensive, KSU Dance Fest and Summer Intensive.

    For more information please visit www.lisaklock.com

  • Caroline Clark

    Caroline Clark Assistant Professor of Dance

    Caroline Sutton ClarkPosition:
    Assistant Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-7960
    Email: cclar236@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306N

    Caroline Sutton Clark has a Ph.D. in Dance from Texas Woman's University and M.F.A. from the University of Hawai'i. Her research centers in oral history interviewing with dancers. Caroline is a frequently published academic author and presenter on dance, and she has won the graduate award for excellence and creativity in research from TWU, a Favorite Professor award at Texas State University, and two Top Conference Paper citations from the National Dance Educators Organization. As the 2017 Caroline Plummer Research Fellow in Community Dance in Dunedin, New Zealand, she designed and implemented a culturally diverse community oral history archive and dance festival. Coming from a range of experience in modern dance, butoh, ballet, and other forms of world dance, Caroline's choreography has been commissioned by dance companies in St. Louis, Honolulu, Seattle, Austin, and Minneapolis.
  • Andrea Knowlton

    Andrea Knowlton Assistant Professor of Dance

    Andrea Knowlton headshot in grayscale. Position:
    Assistant Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-4490
    Email: agisekno@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 305D

    Andrea Knowlton is a Choreographer, Educator, and the Artistic Director of DANCE AEGIS, a movement based creative platform. Knowlton creates for both stage and screen in concert and commercial realms. Her work often integrates dance with film, media, and interactive technology. She has presented choreography in venues all over New York City, and Los Angeles. Her dance films and music videos have received national and international screenings. Knowlton's focus as an artist is on process, collaboration, and interdisciplinary conversation. Her choreographic work is inspired by the living body and its relationship to science and technology. She is interested in media, and its ability to diminish or magnify our innate human qualities. She has worked extensively as an Arts Integration Specialist, using dance to teach academic subjects to K-12 students across Los Angeles. As a teaching artist, she works with students of all ages in studio environments. She has been on faculty at Pasadena City College, and California State University Long Beach. Knowlton is a certified Yoga Instructor.  She holds a BFA in Dance/Choreography from Marymount Manhattan College in NYC, and an MFA in Choreography/Integrated Media from California Institute of the Arts.
  • Sean Nguyen-Hilton

    Sean Nguyen-Hilton Lecturer of Dance

    Sean Nguyen HiltonPosition:
    Lecturer of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2851
    Email: snguyenh@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 305E

    Sean Nguyen-Hilton is an artist, choreographer and teacher working in Atlanta.

    His work spans across genres, including stage work, musicals, installation and nontraditional spaces. He engages movement and the physical nature of things. His process is fueled by textures and the amorphous nature of living, as well as the observation of non-human structures and how their architectures can inform deeper understanding of the body. He is fascinated in how the body can be an architectural interface that can anchor consciousness in the present moment. He desires to be immersed among public and performative interactions where physical language can be presented as a medium of unseen forces, giving people a new tool with which to decipher the present moment. He is obsessed with how movement is an ally in filtering energy and expressing it in the present moment.

    Locally, Sean Nguyen-Hilton's work has been presented at the Human Rights Campaign Gala, Atlanta Ballet's Wabi Sabi, Atlanta Ballet's Fellowship Ensemble, The Northwest Florida Ballet, Museum of Contemporary Art GA and The High Museum of Art.

    Previously, Sean spent three seasons with River North Dance Chicago Company performing works by Robert Battle, Lauri Stallings, Lynn Taylor-Corbett, Kevin Iaega Jeff, Julia Rhodes and Harrison McEldowney, among others. He spent two seasons with the NYC-based Armitage Gone! Dance. While with AG!D he toured throughout the U.S. and Europe, and performed at the Joyce theater NYC and Jacob's Pillow. He has also danced with the Bay Area Houston Ballet and Theatre, as well as Columbia Classical Ballet and Staibdance.

    Sean has taught at The University of South Carolina, Northwest Florida Ballet, Ballet Tennessee, The Lou Conte Dance Studio, River North Dance Chicago, Staibdance, Thodos Dance Chicago and the American College Dance Association conference in Atlanta. He is currently on faculty at the Atlanta Ballet Center for Dance Education, Callanwolde Fine Arts Center, Footnotes Dance and Acrobatics Studio, and Powerhouse Dance Center.

    After relocating to Atlanta in 2012, Sean danced with gloATL and was the principal of gloSCHOOLHOUSE (gloATLs educational platform). From 2013 to 2014, he was the Program Coordinator for ChopArt, an organization empowering homeless youth to practice self- expression through art. Sean was also the co-founder and facilitator of Dance Chance Atlanta, a once-a-month choreographic showcase at the Atlanta Ballet supported by the Atlanta arts organization WonderRoot.

    In the Fall of 2014 Sean joined Fly on a Wall as Co-Artistic Director and Program Coordinator. Fly on a Wall is a 501c3 arts organization that thrives when artists of all backgrounds come together to create art that lives at the junction of wit, risk and meaningful experience. Fly's work shifts audiences' perspectives by creating an interface of artistic mediums that is guided by a strong theatrical sensibility and an extensive movement vocabulary.

    In 2015, Sean was a Walthall Fellow through the Atlanta arts organization WonderRoot and a Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences Distinguished Fellow with Fly on a Wall. In 2016 ArtsATL said, "Sean Hilton has emerged as one of the city's leading choreographers." The same year, he was an Idea Capital Grant winner with Fly on a Wall. 

  • Thang Dao

    Thang Dao Limited-Term Instructor of Dance

    Thang Dao Position:
    Limited-Term Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-6789
    Email: tdao5@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 304D

    Thang Dao hails from New York City where he is a freelance choreographer, teacher, and coach. He holds a MA degree from New York University’s Gallatin School. Dao received his formal dance education from the Juilliard School and The Boston Conservatory, where he received his BFA in 2001.

    Dao danced with the Stephen Petronio Company and the Metropolitan Opera until 2006, leaving to choreograph for Ballet Austin, Ballet Austin II, Ailey II, Ballet X, Philadanco, Missouri Contemporary Ballet, the Boston Conservatory along with many universities and performing arts schools nationally and internationally.

    His works have been performed throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia with acclaimed reviews. His ballet Stepping Ground, choreographed for Ballet Austin for the 1st Biannual New American Dance Talent, received the Audience Choice Award all four nights. Dao is the recipient of the 2008 Princess Grace Choreography Fellowship, the 2009 Special Project Grant, and the 2012 Vilcek finalist for Creative Promises in choreography. His choreography received first place at the 2017 Dance and Art in Pietrasanta Festival. Dao was on the creative team for the James Brown Project: Get On The Good Foot commissioned and produced by the Apollo Theater under the direction of Otis Salid. This is Dao's first year at Kennesaw State University.

  • Natalie Berry

    Natalie Berry Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Natalie Smith BerryPosition:
    Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: nberry2@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    M.F.A. Ballet, University of Oklahoma
    Areas of Emphasis: Ballet, History, General Education

    A native of Arkansas, Natalie Berry received her Master of Fine Arts in Dance with an emphasis in Ballet from the University of Oklahoma in 2002. Upon graduation, Berry was honored with the OU School of Dance White Buffalo Mask Award. Since then, she has worked for Winthrop University and Brenau University and has been a guest teacher at Coker College, Middle Tennessee State University, Cary Ballet Conservatory in Cary, N.C. and York County Ballet in Rock Hill, S.C. among others. Berry was invited by the Dekalb County School of the Arts to teach and stage original works and continues to have an ongoing relationship with the program. She has taught at various summer programs including the Summer Wind Youth Ballet, Kennesaw State Summer Dance Clinic, Sawnee Ballet and many more. She was co-director of the Summer Wind Youth Ballet for one season and helped choreograph and stage the mainstage production.  She was the Ballet Mistress for Dancentre South in Woodstock, Ga. where she staged the annual production of The Nutcracker as well as choreographed original works that were performed throughout the southeast. She was commissioned by Ballet Arkansas to create a work on their pre-professional dancers and her work garnered acclaim.  Her choreography has been awarded honorable mention for two years at the Panoply Choreography Contest.  She currently teaches at Impact Dance of Atlanta and serves at the PTA Cultural Arts Chair for her children's elementary school curating four concerts each year.

    Berry has performed with Ballet Arkansas, Oklahoma Festival Ballet and the Alex Spitzer Dance Company. She has studied with such notable teachers such as Dennis Marshall, Dennis Poole, Robert Weiss, David Howard, Alonzo King, Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux, Patricia McBride, Bill Evans and Miguel Terekhov. She has danced in The Nutcracker, Giselle, Gaite Parisienne, Carmina Burina, The Sleeping Beauty, Postmark Graceland and Serenade among other original works.

  • Hannah Buhler

    Hannah Buhler Office Manager/Advisor

    Hannah BuhlerPosition:
    Office Manager/Advisor

    Phone: (470) 578-7673
    Email: hbuhler@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306P

    B.A. Dance, Kennesaw State University

    Hannah Buhler graduated summa cum laude from Kennesaw State University in July 2016, earning a B.A. in dance with a concentration in modern.

    Hannah started her dance training at the age of four in her hometown of Albany, Georgia. She performed in the regional dance company for twelve years. While in the company, she was cast in notable roles such as Clara and The Snow Queen in The Nutcracker and Wendy in Peter Pan. She also taught dance classes in her hometown for over five years. She continued her training at Darton State College's dance program, dancing the "Bluebird" variation from Sleeping Beauty and performing other works in the company's shows. While at Darton, she performed twice at the American College Dance Association and choreographed an original work, Heart of A Rose, that was performed by dancers at the university. In addition, she worked in the Humanities Department as a student administrative assistant.

    In 2014, Hannah was accepted into Kennesaw State University's dance program. During her time in the program, she was cast in several works in the KSU Dance Company, including Dr. Pulinkala's Pyromania, Ido Tadmor's Black Morning, and Lisa Lock's Table Manners 10.5., performed at the American College Dance Festival, Synergy, and the Modern Atlanta Dance Festival, and completed an administrative internship with Dance Canvas. In her senior year, Hannah's senior capstone dance video project, Type Write, was selected for the senior spring concert and she was also awarded the 2016 Outstanding Senior Award. In May 2016, Hannah traveled to Israel with the KSU Dance Department on the pilot study abroad trip and worked with the renowned Batsheva Dance Company.

    Hannah was hired as the Office Manager/Advisor for the KSU Dance Department in May 2017, after working in the interim position for 9 months.

  • Tammy Everhart

    Tammy Everhart Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Tammy EverhartPosition:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: teverha3@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    B.S. in Journalism with a minor in Dance from the University of Florida

    Tammy Everhart has been teaching dance and movement for more than 30 years. She received her early dance training in Clearwater, Florida with Gayle and Phyllis Tutterow, Nilo Toledo and Peggy Wallace. Tammy earned a Bachelor of Science in Journalism with a minor in Dance from the University of Florida, where she danced with the UF Dance Company under the direction of Dr. Rusti Brandman. After college Tammy began working in Journalism in Florida, and later in Sales and Marketing in Georgia, while continuing to teach Jazz, Tap, Ballet and Modern dance several days each week. By 2000 she finally gave in to her passion, gave up her corporate job, and opened a successful dance studio in Kennesaw, Georgia. Since then, Tammy has trained many successful and now professional dancers.

    Tammy has produced original shows at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina for more than 10 years, and recently collaborated with the Georgia Youth Symphony Orchestra on 3 works including an original composition by GYSO Philharmonia Director Dr. Steven Eric Hawk. She directs a local youth performance company that provides a creative outlet for dancers who want to serve their community by performing in a non-competitive environment. Her dancers can be seen on festival stages and charity fundraisers throughout Cobb and Cherokee Counties, making dance accessible to all members of the community.

    Tammy currently focuses on training and educating Tap dancers of all ages. She continues to share her passion for dance with her students at Great Gig Dance Co., and is thrilled to be teaching Tap at Kennesaw State University!

  • Caitlin Gray

    Caitlin Gray Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Caitlin Gray headshot in grayscale. Position:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: cgray80@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Area of Emphasis: Jazz

    Born in NYC, Caitlin Gray's diverse background, which includes dance, gymnastics and circus arts, has made her a much sought-after teacher and choreographer. She believes that teaching is an integral part of giving back to the dance community and has taught master classes all over the U.S. and abroad, including South Africa, United Kingdom, U.A.E., Turkey, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Canada and Australia.

    Caitlin has most-notably worked with director Baz Luhrmann and Oscar-winner Catherine Martin on both the World and Australian premieres of their film “The Great Gatsby”, earning rave reviews. She has also choreographed for the CBS show, “Reckless”, featuring Cam Gigandet (“Twilight”, “Burlesque”) and Anna Wood. Caitlin has worked extensively with Sony Music, choreographing live performances and music videos for many of their artists, including The Veronicas (“You Ruin Me”, Australian Grammy Winner, Best Video of the Year) and Bonnie Anderson (“Blackout”, “Rodeo”). Additional credits include the BMW Series 5 Launch in Singapore, featuring activist Lewis Pugh, Marina Bay Sands “Beyond Expectations” in Tokyo, featuring David Beckham, NBC Kids, Miss USA, Speedo Internationalʼs Olympic Product Launch, featuring Michael Phelps, Liberty Bowl Halftime Show, featuring American Idol winner Taylor Hicks, and several music tours, including performances on the Big Time Rush Tour.

    Caitlin has been on faculty at Broadway Dance Center and Steps on Broadway in NYC for 13 years.  She is also resident choreographer for the NCAA Division 1 Nationally-ranked University of Denver Gymnastics team.

    Since moving to Atlanta two years ago, Caitlin has choreographed “The Moors”, “Eurydice”, “Spring Awakening”, and created an original, immersive, site-specific experience, called “The Haunting”, which successfully ran at Moon River Brewing Company in Savannah for 7 straight months.  She is also currently on faculty at Kennesaw State University and Oglethorpe University, and represented as a choreographer with Xcel Talent.

    For more information, check out Caitlinʼs website: caitlingraycreative.com and instagram @caitlingraycreative.
  • Johnny Hayes

    Johnny Hayes Accompanist

    Johnny HayesPosition:

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: jhayes78@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Johnny "Barago" Hayes a native of East St.Louis, holds a Master of Arts Degree in Education. He is a certified school teacher and has been a professional percussionist of African drums for over forty years. He performed with the Katherine Dunham School of Performing Arts for twenty years, and continues to provide African pPercussion instruction to students in Atlanta and surrounding cities. Johnny "Barago" Hayes has been a percussionist at Kennesaw State University since the year 2013, and was music director for fourteen years at the Uhuru dance company in Atlanta, Georgia. He performed in the 1996 World Olympics, Dance Africa, National Black Arts Festivals, and has toured throughout the United States with several dance companies. He currently performs with Ballethnic, Uhuru, Manga, Total, and Edeliegba Dance Companies.

    Johnny "Barago" Hayes is a recipient of the Katherine Dunham Legacy Keeper Award, and the African Dance Community Seed Setter Award in recognition for contributions to the community. As an educator and percussionist of African drums, Johnny "Barago" Hayes is determined to preserve and promote the culture of African percussion music, by providing classes and workshops to adults and youth.

  • Nathan Hites

    Nathan Hites Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Nathan Hites headshot in grayscale. Position:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: nhites@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Area of Emphasis: Dance in Society

    Nathan Hites received his BA from the University of New Hampshire, where he trained with Larry Robertson, Michele Leslie, Gay Nardone, and Nancy Steele. He spent summers at the American Dance Festival at Duke University, studying with such notable teachers as Rick McCullough, Gerri Houlihan, Terrence Greene, Betty Jones, Iréne Hultman, and Ronald K. Brown. Mr. Hites furthered his studies at The Boston Ballet School and The Green Street Studios in Boston, MA and The Paul Taylor and The José Limón Schools in NYC. He has performed in a wide repertoire of classical and contemporary roles and collaborated on the creations of numerous contemporary works.

    In 2011, Mr. Hites joined the faculty of the Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education and currently teaches students of both the Pre-Professional/Academy Division and the Adult Open Division. Additionally, he created the dance history program and teaches the curriculum to the professional track students. Mr. Hites is the Atlanta Ballet’s Resident Dance Researcher/Historian and regularly lectures to Atlanta Ballet audiences and other various schools and institutions throughout the Atlanta area. He has been a program writer for both the Atlanta Ballet and Boston Ballet.  

    In 2019 Mr. Hites joined the Emory Dance faculty teaching both beginner and upper-level ballet.

    Mr. Hites has been a guest teacher for Staibdance, Proia Dance Project, The Perimeter Ballet, and Dance 101 and takes great pride in his work for United Dance Europe and United Dance America — dance for individuals with Downs Syndrome, where he is Coordinator/Assistant Teacher.

  • Theresa Howard

    Theresa Howard Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Theresa M HowardPosition:
    Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: thowar20@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Ed.D. Instructional Leadership, Argosy University
    M.S. Dance Movement Therapy, Hunter College
    B.F.A. Dance Theater and Education,  Herbert H. Lehman College
    Area of Emphasis: African Dance

    Theresa M. Howard is an enthusiastic professional that has combined expertise in Health and Human Services and the Arts. Ms. Howard has committed over 40 years in a career in Mental Health, Substance Abuse, Prevention, Aging Services, Dance and Education. She has a unique balance in her work, by blending the Arts and providing supportive services to those in need. She has worked in a variety of Healthcare, Government, and Education settings. Her strength comes through her passion of bringing out the best in people.

    Ms. Howard is a native of New York and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Dance Theatre and Education from Herbert H. Lehman College, Master of Science in Dance Movement Therapy from Hunter College, and a Doctor of Education in Instructional Leadership from Argosy University. She is a registered Dance Movement Therapist, Certified Preventionist iV, Certified Addiction Counselor II, and a Certified Yoga instructor.

    Theresa M. Howard is an accomplished professional dancer and dance educator, proficient in African dance, classical ballet, modern dance, jazz, tap, and belly dance techniques. Ms.Howard has performed and been a guest performer with many prominent dance ensembles for over 40 years. These included: Chuck Davis African-American Dance Ensemble, Joan Miller and the Chamber Arts Players, Eleo Pomare, Rod Rogers Dance Company, Giwayen Mata, Barefoot Ballet, Manga African Dance Ensemble, Alvin Ailey's "Revelations" at Herbert H. Lehman College, and has performed in several of Ballethnic Dance Company's signature dances: Urban Nutcracker, Leopard Tale, Flying West, and Jazzy Sleeping Beauty. Ms. Howard performed in several DanceAfrica events, the 1996 Summer Olympics and Para Olympics, and has danced in several music videos, and performed as an extra in the movie "Remember The Titans." Ms. Howard was the choreographer for several plays, including the award winning play "Ruined" which was performed at Kennesaw State University. She has performed for dignitaries such as Andrew Young, Desmond Tutu, The King and Secretary of Travel for Oshogbo State, Nigeria, four-time defensive player of the year Dikembe Mutumbo, Fulton County Commissioners, and mayors for the City of Atlanta, East Point and College Park, Georgia.

    Ms. Howard is a part-time Assistant Professor of Dance at Kennesaw State University and has conducted dance classes and workshops at Gwinnett Technical College, Emory University, Georgia Tech University, Swarthmore College, Pace Academy, The Lovett School, Trinity School, Gate City Elementary School and has choreographed Coronation Events for Clark College. Ms. Howard has been a guest artist and dance educator for artist in residency programs throughout the United States. She also instructs African dance classes at Ballethnic Academy of Dance, Lilburn School of Dance, Fulton County Aviation Cultural Community Center, and Dance Canvas Summer Intensives.

    Ms. Howard's community involvement includes providing dance and African drum instruction to Youth Enrichment Programs, Senior Citizen programs, and Fulton County Drug Court. Ms. Howard is founder, director, instructor, and choreographer for the M.O.D.E. "Edeliegba," Senior Dance Ensemble, a traveling dance troupe comprised of male and female senior citizens aged 60 years and older.

    Ms. Howard has travelled to West, North, and East Africa as a cultural exchange dance instructor/educator and has shared her knowledge both in Africa and in the states.

    Theresa M. Howard is the recipient of the Ballethnic Academy of Dance 2017 Service Award, 2012 Legacy Award, 2012 Fulton County Focus Award, 2008 Pinnacle Leadership Award, 2007 Winterfest Volunteer Angel Award, and 2006 W.O.M.E.N Award.

  • Rifka Mayani

    Rifka Mayani Executive Director, Process and Project Management & Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Rifka MayaniPosition:
    Executive Director, Process and Project Management & Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-6049
    Email: rmayani@kennesaw.edu
    Location: TS 161

    M.B.A., Kennesaw State University; Indian Classical Dance training under Guru Kalyan Sundaram Pillai Area of Emphasis: Indian Classical Dance

    Rifka Mayani is a graduate from one of India's premier dance institutions - Sri Rajarajeshwari Bharatha Natyam Kala Mandir, Mumbai. Since her initial training at the tender age of 6, Rifka has studied and performed this Indian classical art form for more than 35years under the tutelage of Guru Kalyan Sundaram Pillai. Her performances over the years both in India and the USA, have included several original works by her Guruji. In addition to her intensive study of Bharatha Natyam, Rifka's academic pursuit has led her to earn several degrees - an MBA from Kennesaw State University (KSU) in 1997; a Bachelor's in Law (LLB) in 1994 and a Bachelor's in Arts (BA) with a Political Science concentration in 1991; both from the University of Mumbai, India. Rifka currently serves as the Associate Director for Enterprise Systems and Services at KSU and is also an affiliated faculty in the Asian Studies Program.

    Highlights of Rifka's performances in USA:

    • Solo performance for Diversity Luncheon at KSU (2005)
    • AAHOA (Asian American Hotel Owners Association) annual convention (1999)
    • Solo performance for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (1999)
    • Solo performance for a special KSU event hosting all the Continuing Education Deans within the Board of Regents (1997)
    • US tour performances with the Raja Rajeshwari Dance School disciples from India, performing original dance dramas and thematic presentations of Vasanthavalli-Thirikuttrala Kuravanji and Jaya Jaya Sankara at 18 varied venues (1996)
    • Invited to perform at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics - Motorola Pavilion in the Olympic Village, for executives and guests during the World Games (Choreographed and trained 12 KSU students for these special 4 performances)
    • Solo performance for the welcome reception of the Swiss Consul General (1995); The unveiling of the Indian Saree at the High Museum (1995) with Guest of Honor Mrs. Meera Shankar, then Minister of Commerce from India, and now the Indian Ambassador to the USA in Washington, DC
    • An intense two and half-hour solo dance recital at the Stillwell Theater at KSU (1995)
    • Routine guest lectures/demonstrations for KSU classes on Diversity & Asian studies (1995 - Current)

    Rifka is the artistic director and choreographer for Tandav Themes Dance Academy, an Indian Classical Dance School of "Bharatha Natyam" in Atlanta, for young aspirants of the chiseled dance discipline. Through this school, Rifka imparts knowledge of this ancient art from in the pure Thanjavur style. As Choreographer & Artistic Director for Tandav Themes Dance Academy, some key performances with students include:

    • Rhythms of India (2009)
    • Who's Who Among Asian Americans, Leaders and Legends Awards (2009)
    • Asian American Heritage Foundation Gala (2009)  
  • Allan Paug

    Allan Paug Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    AJ PaugPosition:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: apaug@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    AJ Paug is from Acworth, GA where he started his training in dance and theatre at Woodland High School for the performing arts. He continued his formal dance and choreography training at Kennesaw State University under the direction of Ivan Pulinkala. AJ has been choreographing and teaching for 14 years all around Georgia and is in high demand for his creativity and unique use of fusing both genres of contemporary and hip-hop dance. AJ is Co-Artistic Director of Gotta Dance Contemporary and has helped produce their last 6 shows with the 5th show being "Dreamscape," a collaborative effort by GDC and Zephyr Instrumental to create an original show, with original scores of music, original dance choreography, original Aerial and Harness choreography. AJ is signed with Xcel Talent and is working as a professional dancer/choreographer in Atlanta. You can see his latest work as choreographer on the new Netflix series coming soon titled "The Haunting of Hill House." AJ has worked with multiple production companies in Georgia as director, producer, editor, writer, and camera op. With the launch of Dance Informa's Interview Series in 2018 AJ is currently Producer for Dance Informa's Atlanta Chapter with director Allison Gupton.
  • Carolyn Perry

    Carolyn Perry Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Carolyn Crumpton PerryPosition:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: cperry33@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    B.F.A. Dance, Brenau University; Area of Emphasis: Ballet, Musical Theatre, Jazz

    Carolyn Crumpton Perry has been member of the adjunct dance faculty at Kennesaw State University since 2006. She teaches all levels of Ballet as well as Musical Theatre dance.

    Ms. Perry began her formal dance training in Wilmington, NC with the Wilmington Civic Ballet where she studied with many professional dancers from the North Carolina School of the Arts, Raleigh Dance Theatre, and most notably her mother, Annette Crumpton. She pursued dance in her collegiate years at Brenau University where she graduated summa cum laude in 1992 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Arts Management and Dance Performance. She later returned to Brenau and received her certification in Dance Education for both public and private school systems.

    Ms. Perry moved to New York City immediately after graduation from Brenau to further her dance training and perform. While in New York, she was a manager of the Broadway Dance Center and performed with the New York Dance Ensemble's tour of the "Firebird." Her time in NYC gave her the opportunity to study ballet with legendary dance instructors, such as Finis Jhung, Madame Darvash, Nenette Charisse, and David Howard, to name a few. At that time, she also studied musical theatre, tap, and jazz with Chet Walker, Robert Tucker, Crystal Chapman, Germaine Goodson, Frank Hatchett, and Sheila Barker.

    Upon relocation back to Georgia, Ms. Perry danced for the Georgia Ballet Professional Company for eight years under the direction of Iris Hensley. At the Georgia Ballet she had the opportunity to perform many signature roles: Serenade as Dark Angel; Where the Wild Things as Dream Max; The Nutcracker- as Arabian Pas de Deux, Spanish, Waltz of the Flowers, Snow; Swan Lake as Neapolitan Variation, corps de ballet; Five Guys Named Moe as Pas de deux; Giselle as Friends, corps de ballet; and Carmen in corps de ballet.

    Ms. Perry's ballet performing repertoire also includes leading roles staged by marina Levasheva for the Bravo Dance Center: Paquita, Les Slyphides, Don Quixote, and Sleeping Beauty.

    In addition to ballet, Ms. Perry also performed for Bacchus Productions under the direction of Ginny King. With Bacchus, she danced for many industrial shows, and corporate events in the Atlanta area and other states. Most notably, she was one of sixteen featured dancers for the 75th Anniversary of the Fox Theatre.

    Ms. Perry discovered her true passion of teaching at the Bravo Dance Center with Director/Owner Janet Rowthorn. She has been teaching students of all ages and all styles in dance for eighteen years. Ms. Perry continues her position as Program Coordinator and Company Director for Bravo Dance Center. She has proudly conceived, directed and choreographed several outstanding children ballets for the students at Bravo such as: Dancing Happily Ever After (2011) Whimsical Wistful Wiz (2010) Bravo Backyardigans (2009) Peter Rabbit (2008) (2005) Angelina and the Four Seasons (2007)

    Ms. Perry's name is also often associated with winter guard programs, and Drum and Bugle corps in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois. She spent many years training dancers and choreographing prestigious programs to perform across the country. She choreographed for the award-winning Pride of Cincinnati from 1999-2005. She worked with other programs such as Phantom Regiment, Bluecoats, and Cavaliers. In Marietta, she instructed dance and choreographed for Lassiter High School's band and winter guard program. In 2000-2001, Ms. Perry implemented the first, and only dance program for Harrison High School.

    Ms. Perry continues to share her love of dance and her expertise at Kennesaw State University, Bravo Dance Center, and now Mount Paran Christian School's Performing Arts department. 

  • Cynthia Perry

    Cynthia Perry Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Cynthia Bond headshot by Keiko Guest. Position:
    Part-Time Assistant Professor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: cperry44@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    MFA in Dance, The University of Oklahoma

    MFA in Narrative Media Writing, The University of Georgia

    BFA in Dance (Scholar), New York University Tisch School of the Arts

    Areas of Emphasis: Dance in Society, Dance Kinesiology

    Cynthia Bond Perry seeks dynamic connections between several paths of dance inquiry. Her background spans from performance and choreography to the teaching of ballet and modern dance techniques as well as dance kinesiology, Laban movement theory, dance history and dance criticism. Such pursuits in the studio, theater and archive continue to inform her teaching and research.

    As contributing writer for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Atlanta arts website ArtsATL.org, where she served as Dance Editor, Perry has written more than 300 articles and reviews for these publications as well as Dance Magazine, Atlanta Magazine and Dance International. She has published historical research on choreographer Valerie Bettis and Dorothy Alexander, founder of Atlanta Ballet.

    Perry trained under New York City Ballet artists Conrad Ludlow and Joy Feldman and earned a bachelor's degree in dance from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. She completed graduate work in modern dance at the University of Oklahoma while earning certification in Bartenieff Fundamentals and Laban Movement Analysis.

    Influential teachers include Lawrence Rhodes, Maggie Black, Betty Jones and Ko Yukihiro. Lorn MacDougal and Doris Rudko helped shape Perry's approach to dance improvisation and composition, while Laban Movement Analysis teachers Peggy Hackney, Pam Schick and Carol-Lynne Moore gave her tools to analyze and describe movement in its many layers of meaning.

    As a New York-based student and freelancer, Perry presented several choreographic pieces and performed in works by MacDougal, Danny Buraczeski and Rosalind Newman. New York Times critic Jennifer Dunning described Perry's dancing in Newman's Untitled White as "a highlight of the evening."

    Perry subsequently toured and presented choreography in venues across the South Central United States as an independent artist and as a member of the University of Oklahoma's Modern Repertory Dance Theatre, appearing in works by Yukihiro, Margarita Banos-Milton and Takako Asakawa. In 1993, Perry was selected to perform sections from Paul Taylor's Aureole and Esplanade at the American Dance Festival under direction of Sharon Kinney and Cathy McCann.

    Before joining the KSU dance faculty, Perry served on dance faculties of the University of Oklahoma, Brenau University and the University of Central Oklahoma. She is also a certified teacher in Zena Rommett Floor-Barre Technique and STOTT Pilates Essential Matwork. 

    Perry has served on panels in connection with KSU College of the Arts, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Georgia Council for the Arts and Emory University. She is a National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts Finalist in Dance (Choreography) and recipient of the University of Oklahoma Weitzenhoffer College of Fine Arts Faculty Peer Recognition Award.

  • Paul Stevens

    Paul Stevens Accompanist

    Paul StevensPosition:

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: psteven9@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    A native of Atlanta, Paul Stevens obtained a music performance degree in 2012 from the University of Georgia where he studied percussion with Timothy Adams, former principal timpanist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Although solidly grounded in classical music, Paul remains versatile, moving fluidly between jazz, rock, electronic, and experimental contemporary styles. He maintains a busy schedule as a freelance musician, composer, and educator, playing anything from vibraphone to musical saw. Paul has given concerts throughout the United States, Europe, and South America, including world premiers at the 2011 and the 2012 soundSCAPE Composition & Performance Festival in Maccagno, Italy, the 2015 South By Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas, and the 2015 So Percussion Summer Institute at Princeton University. Current projects include the Albany Symphony Orchestra, corporate keynote ROC Ensemble, and electro-pop duo Moloq. As a composer, Paul's works have been performed in Spain, Israel, and throughout the United States.
  • David Tatu

    David Tatu Production Manager & Resident Lighting Designer; Part-time Instructor

    David TatuPosition:
    Production Manager & Resident Lighting Designer; Part-time Instructor

    Phone: (470) 578-2378
    Email: dtatu@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 305F

    B.F.A. in Technical Direction, UNCSA

    David J Tatu is the Production Manager and Resident Lighting Designer for the Department of Dance and teaches a course in Dance Production.

    After graduating from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts with a B.F.A. in Technical Direction, David spent a large part of his early career on the road with both Dance and Theater companies. He was the Master Carpenter for North Carolina Shakespeare Festival and spent over thirty weeks a year traveling with North Carolina Dance Theater for three seasons. With Ballet Metropolitan, he toured the Midwest, The Rocky Mountain States and as far north as Thunder Bay, Ontario. He has also toured Internationally from South Korea to London, England.

    He was the Director of Production and Lighting Director for Atlanta Ballet for over 15 years. A few of his original lighting design credits include: Alice in Wonderland, Carmina Burana, Divertimento #15, Il Distratto, Intermezzo, Pastoral Dances, Rite of Spring, Troy Game, Coppelia, Prisma, La Bayadere Act II, Cinderella, Con Amore, Allegro Brilliante, Madame Butterfly, Nutcracker and most recently he created the lighting for John McFall’s final work with Atlanta Ballet: Sleeping Beauty. He has also designed for Ohio Ballet, Cuyahoga Valley Youth Ballet, Nevada Opera, Gwinnett Ballet and Robert LaFosse’s Dancers from New York and he is the Resident Lighting Designer for Dance Canvas.
    As the Production Stage Manager and assistant lighting designer with Ohio Ballet, he worked closely with Tony Award winning lighting designer, Thomas R. Skelton. During that time, he recreated Skelton’s work for two seasons at the Joyce and designed the lighting for Ohio Ballet’s In Full Swing, A Person and The Exiles.

    At KSU, David has created the lighting for a score of works. Some of his favorites: Rebuild, Alice, Winergy, Touchdown, Con Moto-Mosso, Derivative, Hyperkinetic and Table Manners 10.5. He has lit the Company at various festivals such as American Collage Dance Festival at the Kennedy Center and has Production Managed Department of Dance events around Atlanta.

    David has worked as a Facilities Manager, most recently for Atlanta Ballet, and a Project Manager and consultant for multiple construction projects and renovations of arts facilities. He is an LEED Accredited Professional, has project managed a LEED Gold certified renovation, worked on the KSU Department of Dance’s Phase Two expansion and the Third expansion of the dance studios located in Chastain Pointe along with working on the renovations to the Dance Theater on the Marietta Campus.

    While at Kennesaw State University, David has joined the Crisis Coordinator program, is one of KSU’s first cadres of certified CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) instructors and achieved both Coined and Pinned status in the Crisis Coordinator program for his training and work in emergency preparedness. He is also a member of the Fulton County CERT program.


  • Jordan Wardach

    Jordan Wardach Theater Manager

    Jordan WardachPosition:
    Theater Manager

    Phone: (470) 578-7962
    Email: jwardach@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 304C

    B.A. Theatre and Performance Studies, Kennesaw State University

    Jordan Wardach graduated summa cum laude from Kennesaw State University with a degree in Theatre and Performance Studies in 2012. Though her concentration was acting, she also focused on lighting design while in school. She was the lighting designer for two Theatre and Performance Studies productions while still a student. The first production she designed, called The Cocteau Hour, she also performed in as an ensemble member of the cast. The second design was for the well-known musical, Cabaret, for which she won second place at the Southeast Regional American College Theatre Festival.

    Immediately following graduation in December 2012, Jordan went up to New York with a group from KSU to serve as the assistant lighting designer for a production of A Christmas Carol at the Irondale Theater in Brooklyn. She returned the following year for the same production as the lighting designer. In 2013, Jordan also received a six-month internship with Theatrical Outfit in Atlanta as an office and lighting intern. During her internship she assisted with the rental process of the theater and was the assistant lighting designer for The Fabulous Lipitones. In summer of 2013, Jordan was accepted into the Kennedy Center's Directing Intensive program in Washington D.C., where she learned from professional theatre directors from around the country.

    For the next several years, Jordan worked as an electrician and lighting designer for theatres in and around Atlanta. Working often with the Aurora Theatre, she served as the master electrician for many productions and the lighting designer for productions of I and You and Working. At Theatrical Outfit, she joined the SummerStage production team for two years as the lighting designer for their youth productions of The Wizard of Oz and Beauty and the Beast. Jordan also returned to KSU as the lighting designer for Arms and the Man and Peter and the Starcatcher.

    In spring 2018, Jordan joined the KSU Dance Department as the Theater Manager for the newly renovated Dance Theater.

  • Christine Welker

    Christine Welker Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Christine WelkerPosition:
    Part-Time Instructor of Dance

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: cwelker1@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Areas of Emphasis: Ballet

    Born in Sacramento California, Christine began her training with Barbara Crockett at the School for the Sacramento Ballet and continued her training at the San Francisco Ballet School on full scholarship under the direction of Lola De Avila. There she studied exclusively with Larissa Skylanskya, Jocelyn Vollmar, and Jorge Esquivel.

    Christine has danced with the Sacramento Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Ballet West, and the Atlanta Ballet where she danced for 19 years in principal roles after joining in 1995. Memorable highlights include Juliet in Michael Pink's Romeo and Juliet, Kitri in Don Quixote, the Summer Duet in James Kudelka's The Four Seasons, Lady Capulet in Jean Christophe Malliot's Romeo et Juliette, Cio Cio San in Stanton Welch’s Madame Butterfly, Odette in John Mcfalls’ Swan Lake, Mina in Michael Pink’s Dracula, Cinderella in Ben Stevenson’s Cinderella, the principal female in Christopher Wheeldon’s Rush, and Waltz Girl in George Balanchine's Serenade. Several, of many original roles created for Christine include Sinfonietta Giacosa, The Rite of Spring, and John and I by acclaimed choreographer and Artistic Director of Scottish National Ballet, Christopher Hampson.

    Christine was highlighted in Atlanta Ballet’s widely praised collaborations with Big Boi of Outkast in Big, choreography by Lauri Stallings, and The Indigo Girls Project choreographed by Margo Sappington. In her first year with the Atlanta Ballet, Christine performed as part of the Cultural Olympiad during the 1996 Olympic Games. Along with touring internationally to South Korea, Mexico, and Scotland's Edinburgh Dance Festival, she also has had the honor of touring to London, England, performing the role of Wendy in John Mcfall's Peter Pan, as part of the year 2000 Millennium festivities.

    During the course of her career, Christine has had the pleasure of working with many world-renowned choreographers; including Wayne McGregor, Twyla Tharp, Lila York, Helen Pickett, Val Caniparoli, Julia Adam, Diane Coburn Bruning, Gina Patterson, Darrell Moultrie and Amy Seiwert.

    Guest appearances include American Repertory Ensemble, Chamber Dance Project, New Orleans Ballet Theatre, Community Nutcracker, and the North Star Ballet.

    For six years, Christine served as mentor and co-director of the Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education's Professional summer program. She has served as rehearsal assistant for Ohad Naharin's Minus 16, alongside Bhatsheva's Rachel Osborne and Danielle Agami and with the Atlanta Ballet Fellowship Ensemble's production of Donald Mahler's Cinderella. Christine joined Kennesaw State University’s Department of Dance in 2014 as a part-time instructor, and has also served as repetiteur and rehearsal director. Christine began STOTT pilates training in February of 2015 with Inspire Health and is level one certified. From March of 2016 to July of 2017 Christine served as Principal to Atlanta Ballet’s Powers Ferry school. Most recently, Ms. Welker was named Education Director for Terminus School of Modern Ballet in association with Terminus Modern Ballet Theatre, in 2017, and continues to run the dance education programs and instruct classes there. Christine enjoys living in Decatur with her husband John and son Lucas.

  • Kyla Zollitsch

    Kyla Zollitsch Accompanist

    Kyla Cummins ZollitschPosition:

    Phone: (470) 578-2852
    Email: kzollits@kennesaw.edu
    Location: CP 306

    Kyla Cummins Zollitsch earned her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from Portland State University. She toured extensively through out the west coast and accompanied for Portland State, Reed College and Lewis and Clark. Kyla has accompanied for the Atlanta Ballet, Alaska Dance Theatre, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Milwaukee Ballet and Kennesaw State University. Kyla also played for numerous guest ballet companies including, but not limited to, Alvin Ailey, Lines Ballet and American Ballet Theatre.

    Kyla currently owns a full-time piano studio where her students have won many local competitions and festivals. She resides in beautiful Rome, GA with her husband Matt and two dogs Zoey and Xena.