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2021 series of events

Don't miss out on our next Series of Virtual Events!!


In the modern world of economics as it pertains to the performing arts, a dancer has limited choices when it comes to a career. The more well rounded the dancer, the more the choices open up.  One of those choices is the world of Musical Theatre.  A Broadway dancer in the ensemble can make a sustainable living, but in order to be in the ensemble, a dancer today must also be able to sing, and in many cases, be able to deliver lines of dialogue.  That is where SOUND ADVICE: FINDING THE DANCER’S VOICE comes in.  SOUND ADVICE is a series of workshops geared specifically to the dancer, which includes an intensive on how to successfully conquer the Musical Theatre audition process.


We know that the Dance instructor plays a key role in guiding young performers, that is why we are offering this special workshop geared to the dance instructor. We will discuss methods to introduce the concept of vocal production to your dance students in organic ways that go hand-in-hand with your classes.  We will suggest resources for finding material for students who want to go to the next level, and we will be answering specific questions in a very safe and friendly atmosphere.

Click below to register for this free event! 

Host Bios

Tony Parise, Director / Writer. Tony’s career began in St. Louis at the age of ten in the children’s chorus at The Muny. He went on to appear in the National tour of A Chorus Line and was on Broadway in 42nd Street, Me and My Girl, and City of Angels. Directing credits include Hello, Dolly! starring Madeline Kahn, Oliver! starring Ellen Greene, Me and My Girl starring Tim Curry among many, many others both nationally and abroad. Tony has had the honor of choreographing Bernadette Peters in both of her Carnegie Hall and Radio City Debuts. He choreographed the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade for eight years, and also staged the New York Pops Anniversary Galas for many years. Tony was the Director of the Hasty Pudding Theatricals at Harvard University for 23 years.  Here in St. Louis, Tony Directed and Choreographed the critically acclaimed Last of the Red Hot Mamas at New Jewish Theatre.  In addition to the St. Louis Teen Talent Competition, Tony also writes and directs the St. Louis High School Musical Theatre Awards, and is the Creative Director of The Festival Of Lights in Kiener Plaza.  

Steve Neale is an award-winning composer, conductor and pianist. With a degree in Film Scoring from the Berklee College of Music, Steve has written and produced music for film, video games, and live theater around the country. Steve directs the renowned choir at St. Margaret of Scotland parish, is adjunct faculty in the Leigh Gerdine Conservatory of Music at Webster University. He sings in the a cappella celtic group, The Wee Heavies and has music directed and done sound design for many local and national theater companies.

Past Events

Dance Careers: An Exploration of Pathways and Roles in Today’s Society with

Cydney Spohn of Solutions In Motion

Saturday, October 16, 2021 10:00-11:30am CST

Cydney Spohn, Founder of Solutions In Motion, will lead a presentation about dance careers and various ways dancers make a living, from performing to serving communities and solving problems in society. Pathways to employment will be discussed in addition to the essential skills dancers use to successfully navigate the 21st Century creative gig economy. A diverse representation of dancers and their career paths will be shared with time for Q&A. Dancers, parents, teachers, high school counselors, and anyone interested in this topic are welcome.

Solutions In Motion (SIM) offers consulting services and educational support to dance organizations, private/public schools, studios, teachers, artists, students, and parents. Filling in the gaps of dancers’ education and career planning, SIM customized workshops, presentations, and class series include topics on career pathways, sustainable careers, résumé and portfolio development, job applications, dance entrepreneurship, leadership, dance intersecting with other industries, college and career readiness, college selection, self-care, and somatic movement education. SIM is a presenter for the Gibney Online Group Study Program (NYC) and has conducted learning events at The Joffrey Academy of Dance (Chicago), the National High School Dance Festival, and dance schools in the U.S. and abroad.

Cydney Spohn, Solutions In Motion (SIM) Founder, is a former member of North Carolina Dance Theatre and soloist with The Pennsylvania Ballet. Cydney transitioned from performing to higher education where she taught for twenty years and held the rank of tenured Professor of Dance at The University of Akron. Now retired from university life, Cydney's “third act” is dedicated to sharing her 35+ years of dance experience and knowledge to support diversity, equity, inclusion, and learning in the field through her education and consulting company, Solutions In Motion. Additional credits and background experience include a M.A. in Social Philosophical Foundations of Education, a B.S. in Labor Economics, two Princess Grace Foundation, USA awards, an Emerging Choreographer award from PA Council on the Arts, various grants, publications in Research in Dance Education and Arts Education Policy Review, and seats on the boards of CORPS de Ballet International and the Thomas S. Kenan Institute for the Arts.

Dance and Social Justice: How to Navigate Histories of Oppression with Adam W. McKinney

June 26, 2021 2:00-3:30pm CST

Dancer, choreographer, and activist Adam W. McKinney will present on his recent work to build capacities for civic change through choreography and memorial activism. In the workshop, McKinney will reflect on and invite participants to think about offering creative, art-based solutions to histories of oppression.

Adam W. McKinney is a former member of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Béjart Ballet Lausanne, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, and Milwaukee Ballet Company. He has led dance work with diverse populations across the U.S. and in Benin, Canada, England, Ghana, Hungary, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Palestine, Poland, Serbia, Spain, and South Africa. He served as a U.S. Embassy Culture Connect Envoy to South Africa through the U.S. State Department. Other awards of note include a Mid-America Arts Alliance Interchange grant for Fort Worth Lynching Tour, an augmented reality bike tour and dance performance around Fort Worth to remember a history of lynching; the NYU President’s Service Award for dance work with populations who struggle with heroin addiction; grants from the U.S. Embassy in Budapest and The Trust for Mutual Understanding to work with Roma youth in Hungary; a Jerome Foundation grant for Emerging Choreographers; and a U.S. Embassy in Accra grant to lead a video oral history project with a Jewish community in Sefwi Wiawso, Ghana. He was a School of American Ballet’s National Visiting Teaching Fellow, an opportunity to engage in important conversations around diversity and inclusion in classical ballet. Named one of the most influential African Americans in Milwaukee, WI by St. Vincent DePaul, McKinney is the Co-Director of DNAWORKS (, an arts and service organization committed to healing through the arts and dialogue. He serves as President for Tarrant County Coalition for Peace and Justice, a Fort Worth-based social justice organization. He holds a BFA in Dance Performance with high honors from Butler University and an MA in Dance Studies with concentrations in Race and Trauma theories from NYU-Gallatin.

Footprints of a TapDancer with Chris Rutledge

May 19, 2021 7:00-8:30pm CST


Tap dance workshop class with a live TapPainting creation to finish!

Chris L Rutledge -the TapArtist- ...… started his dance training at 19 in Alabama, by the renowned Lisa Lyndon. He has training in Tap, Jazz, and Ballet, but his Professional Career is mainly TapDance and Body Percussion. Chris has Co-choreographed/performed in tap shows for both Universal Studios Hollywood and Disneyland. He also helped co-write, co-produce, and co-choreograph performances and full length stage shows, for the leading step/body percussion group MOLODI(mo.lah.dee), out of Las Vegas. He choreographed and was featured in a body percussion number for Italian pop star, Tiziano Ferro, called ‘Per Dono’, for his world tour. ‘Hines/Pollock’ is an award winning Performance Art act he created in 2010 as ‘the TapArtist’, where paintings are made by tap dancing in paint, on a canvas! He wrote a full stage show called FootPrints of a TapDancer, which was seen with his company theFYVgroup, around LA and in the Hollywood Fringe Festival. Chris is a premier performer in the new Holiday Tap Show based out of Minneapolis, MN called “Who Brought The Humbug!?” In the summer of 2019, he spent 4 months in Turkey with All Stars Entertainment for a 5-Star Resort touring show as a performer. He has been a judge/instructor for over 10 years with companies such as DEA, Dance Olympus, Canadian Dance Teachers Association, Starquest, Dance Talent Challenge, and Spotlight! For 20 years, Chris has been sought-after internationally as an instructor and choreographer for competition, concert, and film purposes. Chris is extra excited about his new position as TapMaster at the world famous Columbia Performing Arts Center, where he will add his style and technique to an already stellar faculty

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