Dance and Movement Institute
July 5 - 18, 2020
The Pre-College Summer Dance and Movement Institute is an introduction to the Rider University Dance Program, in partnership with the Princeton Ballet School (PBS). This program brings a respectful and serious approach for dancers who are eager to deepen their experience with different forms of dance and the richness of the dance world. Faculty from Rider University and PBS and will introduce students to the rigor of a collegiate dance program, ranging from dance performance to technical theatre to dance science and more. Students explore campus life at Rider University, from rigorous coursework, access to state-of-the-art equipment and facilities to on-campus housing and activities.
The Rider Dance Program Curriculum is aligned with the National Registry of Dance Educators, and the NJ Department of Education criteria for State Certification.
- 3-4 Classes daily, including:
- Daily Somatics/ Bodywork Session: Dancers will understand important concepts such as core strength, turnout, and functional alignment which are central to their success in any dance style.
- Ballet: focusing on acquisition of strength, coordination and vocabulary
- Contemporary Dance: utilizing the concepts learned in ballet class to explore more current choreographic ideas
- Hip Hop/ Street Dance
- World Dance forms
- Repertory and culminating Informance highlighting the session’s work
- Special Guests and Video Conferences from notable alumni and professionals in the industry, including Pablo Plantino, master teacher, and Penny Saunders, internationally renowned choreographer
- Travel to Philadelphia to attend premiere performances at Ballet X, including a Penny Saunders premiere
- Explore Rider University’s Bachelor’s degree programs in Dance and discuss career opportunities such as Dance education, Studio Ownership, and more
- Preview college living and prepare for undergraduate life. Stay in a college dorm and participate in campus activities.
*(includes room and board)
$1895 • For Enrichment Program
Rider University's pre-college enrichment programs are structured to introduce students to a full college campus experience. From rigorous coursework, access to state-of-the-art equipment and facilities to on-campus housing and activities, students will explore college life at Rider University. Enrichment programs are non-credit bearing, however regular attendance and completed assignments are expected. Students are evaluated by the same academic standards and procedures as Rider University undergraduates.
- A strong interest in dance is important. Basic study in ballet, modern dance, or jazz would be very useful. Enthusiasm for learning a must.
- Enrollment is open to rising high school juniors to incoming college freshmen.
- Space is limited; applicants are reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis.
- This is a pre-college residential program on Rider University’s Lawrenceville campus and students must participate in both weeks.
Cheryl Whitney is an associate professor in the dance program at Rider University, a Princeton Ballet Workshop (PBW) Juniors Ballet Master, and PBW Administrator, and is Artistic Director of Reverence Dance Company. She received an M.S. in Ballet from Indiana University and a B.A. in English Literature and Music from St. Lawrence University. She was trained and performed professionally in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. area. For more than 25 years, she has taught in Princeton Ballet School’s Student Division, also serving as rehearsal director for the ARB productions of The Nutcracker. Guest teaching credits include Brandywine Ballet, Peabody Conservatory and NJ Governor’s School. Her teaching in academic settings include Princeton University, Howard University, Indiana University, The Lawrenceville School, Foxcroft School and Latin School of Chicago. Ms. Whitney has received grants from the New York and New Jersey State Councils on the Arts, and is the 2008 recipient of the Audrée Estey Award for Excellence in Dance Education.
Dr. Kim Chandler Vaccaro is an Associate Professor and director of the Dance program in the department of Theatre and Dance at Westminster College of the Arts, of Rider University. She became a professional dancer and teacher while earning a BA in Choreography and Performance from the University of California at Santa Barbara, a MA in Dance Education from UCLA, and an Ed.D from Temple University. During that time she performed in numerous modern dance companies, choreographed and produced her own work, and taught dance at colleges on both the east and west coasts. Dr. Vaccaro has taught at Princeton Ballet School since 1989, and she has also been an educational consultant to the organization. In addition to speaking at national conferences on dance education, Dr. Kim, as she is known at PBS and on campus, has choreographed over 50 dance pieces for the Ballet School and the Rider Dance Program where she is artistic director of the annual event Rider Dances. Dr. Vaccaro is the author of Jazz Dance Today with Lorraine Person Kriegel; the editor of Dance in My Life; a contributing editor to the award-winning Core Collection in Dance and contributing author to Jazz Dance: Roots and Branches. Her current research is on focus, creativity and mindfulness in dance teaching. She is the creator and author of CoMBo: Conditioning for Mindbody.
John is director of “The Redef Movement: Artists of Street Dance”, a dance company he founded in 2007. He and his company present work both in a range of hip hop and professional dance atmosphere. The company was the champion of hip hop battle “Ill Bounce 3”, finalists for “Battle for Your Life” and continues to make a presence at hip hop battles. Based on the East Coast, John’s work is based within street dance culture. His work utilizes a range of arts influences with techniques based in locking, popping, b-boy, and hip hop. As a performer, John works as a solo artist and in collaboration with members of the hip hop community. He has been a featured dancer in music videos “HSKT” by Tenin and “Get Away” By Alissia. John is an active educator and choreographer with work recognized in both the U.S.A. and Canada. Currently, he has developed a curriculum and program that trains teachers in hip hop terminology and technique, applying it to class structure. This program, “Essentials for Dance Education” has been implemented in classrooms around the world and has offered countless teachers a look into his own method of instruction. Johns classes and events are designed to teach aspiring dancers the fundamentals of street & hip hop dance as a freestyle art and techniques to master choreography. His goals are to inspire people to be artists and push themselves creatively and positively both in and outside of dance.
Jennifer Gladney graduated summa cum laude from Rider University in 2006, where she received a BA in both Elementary Education and Dance, with a specilization in Early Childhood Education. Jennifer`s early training included working with various teachers at Steps on Broadway in her young teens, but primarily studying with Michael Vernon, Simon Dowm Willie Berman and Fabrice Herrault. Later in she attended Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and then returned home to study at Princeton Ballet in the professional training program for her last years in high school. During her senior year in high school she was a trainee for American Repertory Ballet Ensemble, under the direction of Graham Lustig. During her early twenties Ms Gladney performed with many companies as a freelance dancer while attending college and performed many leading ballerina roles such as, Cinderella, Aurora and Sugar Plum Fairy. She also began to focus on performing in a variety of contempoary and modern companies in the tri-state area, including Teamwork Dance, Mercer Dance Ensemble and Boheme Opera NJ as a dancer in La Traviata. In 2003 she graduated from Mercer County Community College (MCCC) originally with an AA in dance and received the Academic Award in Dance before transfering. MCCC allowed her to begin her education while persuing performing and devlopeing her dance teaching career. In 2005 at Rider University Ms Gladney was awarded the Mildred C Hawkins Fine Arts Endowed Scholarship. Ms Gladney created her first work for Rider Dances as a student , 2005, Cross Phases, as her senior honors project. It was the first year the dance department created a main stage show, Gladney has been with Rider Dances since its inception. That same year she began to teach at Princeton Ballet School, primarily children`s classes, a year before finishing college. Ms. Gladney has taught at Princeton Ballet School since both in the children`s divisions, student divsions and open enrollemnt classes. Post college Jennifer became a company member with American Repertory Ballet under the direction of Douglas Martin in 2010. She performed works by Kirk Petterson, Twyla Tharp, Philip Jerry, and Mr Martin. The same year she began teaching the Princeton Ballet Summer Juniors Program, a program for children ages 9-12. In this program she has incorpoarted not only her dance background but education background to facilitate young dancers love for ballet in the summer months. Jennifer has been part of Rider University`s Dance Department since graduating in 2006 as a choregrapher and adjunct faculty member. She works with Rider University students each spring to choreograph for their main stage show Rider Dances, more then fifteen works for the university. Over the years since grduation she has taught many classes to Rider University students in both ballet, modern and contmporary dance. Ms Gladney has also been part of the ballet pedagogy courses, having students observe/train to be ballet teachers her children`s ballet classes. Jennifer is also a faculty member at Mercer County Community College in the Dance and Theater department since 2016. She is a lecturer for dance history as well as teaching technique classes and chreography classes. She is one of the co-directors of Mercer Dance Ensemble, the colleges dance company for students and community members. Ms. Gladney has been affiliated with Mercer Dance Ensmeble since 2001 first as a dancer, then as chreographer and 2020 marks her 20th year as part of the ensemble. She is part of the MCCC and Rider University Dual Agreement Program where students from the community college can transfer to Rider to complete their undergraduate dance studies.
Merli V. Guerra is a professional dancer and award-winning interdisciplinary artist with a background in ballet, modern, and classical Odissi Indian dance. She is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Luminarium Dance Company (Boston, MA) and has performed lead roles with modern dance and classical Odissi companies on tours to India and Japan. Guerra is a 2015 recipient of the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s prestigious Gold Star Award for her work with site-specific dance and community engagement. Her choreographic works, films, and installations have been presented by 80+ events across the U.S., Canada, Germany, Indonesia, and Italy, including the 2019 Women in Dance Leadership Conference (Philadelphia, PA). As a writer, she is Senior Contributor to The Arts Fuse (curating its weekly “top pick” dance events across New England), and a ballet and contemporary dance critic for the Toronto-based Fjord Review, and Vancouver-based Dance International magazine. Guerra frequently acts as a guest choreographer, artist, panelist, teacher, and advocate for the arts. She now continues her work in Boston in addition to her recent work in the Mid-Atlantic, and is a Part-Time Lecturer and MFA in Dance student at Rutgers University.
Pablo Piantino is originally from Mendoza, Argentina. He studied privately with Héctor Zaraspe among many other teachers, and at the Colón Theatre Ballet School. At a very young age, he entered the corps de ballet of the Colón Theatre and remained there for three years, until he was offered a full scholarship to study at The Juilliard School where he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Following graduation in 1999, Pablo joined the San Francisco Ballet where he danced a broad span of classical and neo-classical repertory in the works of Mark Morris, Hans van Manen, George Balanchine, Kenneth McMillan, Jerome Robins, Paul Taylor and Christopher Weeldon to name a few. In 2005, he joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and had the pleasure of working with choreographers such as Nacho Duato, Mats Ek, William Forsythe, Jirí Kylián, Ohad Naharin, and Twyla Tharp, among many others. Upon culmination of his time at Hubbard Street, Pablo moved to Seattle where he received a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance Education from the University of Washington in June 2015. Since graduation, Pablo has taught at George Mason University, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, The Joffrey Ballet Trainee Program, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Tulsa Ballet, Grand Rapids Ballet and Royal New Zealand Ballet among several other institutions. He has staged works by Choreographers, Nacho Duato, Alejandro Cerrudo and Penny Saunders, at the University of Washington, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, Ballet Arizona, George Mason University, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Tulsa Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Los Angeles Ballet, SFDanceworks, Ballet Hagen in Germany and at The Juilliard School. In the Fall of 2017, Pablo joined the superlative faculty of the School of Dance at the University of Utah as an Assistant Professor and will continue to restage choreography around the world.