Meet our 2018 Artists in Residence!

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Shana El ( Dance Teacher, Choreographer), has been involved in the dance arts since age 11 in 1984 . She began her training at Philadanco, then to the Philadanco Training Program, The Creative and Performing Arts High School and the University Of The Arts. She is a 1994 and 2010 awardee of the CEC New Edge Mix Performance Series. She has performed and presented work at the Painted Bride Art Center, Conwell Dance Theater, and The Philadelphia Arts Bank. Shana is a dance teacher of 17 years with the Bowman School of Dance in Cherry Hill New Jersey where she teaches intermediate advanced modern and jazz, and former instructor at the Monarch School of Dance where she instructed Contemporary/Modern Dance and taught master classes. Shana has self produced and choreographed her own productions , such as A Journey Through Consciousness, Presented at All The Way Live Restaurant in April 2015, a combination of spoken word and dance. Shana also is a former member of The Requisite Movers, a choreographers group for women of African Descent, where she choreographed and performed her work Southern Breeze at the Community Education Centers Meeting House Theater in November 2015. Currently she is the Artistic Director of Ujima Dance Theatre formed in September 2016. Ujima has presented work at the Venice Island Performing Arts Center, The Painted Bride, The CHI Movement Arts Center, and the Community Education Center, Meeting House Theatre.  Ujima creates work based on culture, history, human rights and social change.

You can see her work here, here, and here.

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Lily Kind is a choreographic artist, writer, teacher, and scholar. She is interested in play, listening, and power structures. Her physical training is focused on Lindy Hop (swing dance) and Flying Low (contemporary floor work) and her scholarly research is focused on the power structures of American folk, vernacular, and high-art dance. Lily co-runs Ragtag Empire, a swing & soul business enterprise. She has been commissioned by Sarasota Contemporary Dance Company, and assisted Guggenheim Fellows Stephan Koplowitz and Raphael Xavier. She currently writes for Culturebot and Phindie. Writing accolades include the Art Blog/St. Claire Best Under 500 words, a Dance Italia Writing Fellowship, and a NY Times shout out. She teaches contemporary dance and movement in various locations in Philadelphia and provides support for Urban Movement Arts, directed by Vince Johnson. Her formal education goes: Concord Academy, Goucher College (BA 2009) Sarah Lawrence College, Cal Arts, Headlong Performance Institute, and Goddard College (MFA 2019). Sometimes, working with childhood friend Adam Stone, she presents work as Pidgin.

Critical of the Macro-Economy of dance & dance education in the US, Lily made dance exclusively in Baltimore from 2008-2015 as founder and directer of the Effervescent Collective. In this capacity, she directed movement for projects with musicians Bosley, Andrew Bernstein (Horse Lords), Dan Deacon, Louis Weeks, Baltimore Rock Opera Society, Annex Theater, and Single Carrot Theater.

Lily writes for CultureBot and Phindie, and you can read about her work here and here