Meet the Hartford Dance Collective:

 
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Jillian Foley

Founder, Artistic Director, President, Resident Artist, Instructor

Jillian Foley, from Niskayuna, NY where she trained with Northeast Ballet Company, graduated from The Hartt School with a BFA in Ballet Pedagogy and two minors in Psychology and Performing Arts Management. There, she trained in both contemporary and classical styles and was able to travel to Amsterdam for the Julidans Festival in 2016. Jillian is currently a freelance dance artist and performs frequently with Amy Marshall Dance Company. She has also had experience working administratively with Schoen Movement Company, Dance Devise Lab, and Joffrey Ballet School. Jillian is the Chief Operating Officer at Hartford music studio, Parkville Sounds, and recently produced a music tv show, ‘The Parkville Sessions’, which premiered on CPTV/PBS in October 2018. Exploring music and dance collaboration, Jillian has choreographed for Portland Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, and Hartt Opera. Jillian is currently an adjunct professor, teaching dance at The Hartt School Theatre and Vocal divisions.

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Roxanne Lebenzon

Resident Artist, Instructor

Roxanne Lebenzon began studying Vaganova Ballet at the Atlantic Ballet Company and Bossov Ballet Theater in Maine. She continued her ballet education at Northwest Studio for Ballet in California, performing lead roles in Don Quixote, The Littlehumpbacked Horse, Giselle, Sleeping Beauty, and Swan Lake. Under the direction of Ron Cunningham, Roxanne received the opportunity to perform as a flower in the Sacramento Ballet's Nutcracker. She also performed alongside State Street Ballet of Santa Barbara, with the company in Secret Garden and Beauty and the Beast, and in lead roles in Cinderella and The Jungle Book. In 2013, Roxanne began pursuing an Honors BFA in Ballet at the University of Utah. In addition to rigorous ballet training, Roxanne studied kinesiology, pedagogy, choreography, and character dance. She performed with Utah Ballet continuously throughout her time in Utah, including dancing full-length ballets at Kingsbury Hall. She graduated with her Honors BFA in 2017. Roxanne was also a guest artist with the Theater Arts Alliance in California, as their Sugarplum Fairy in the Nutcracker, and an artist with a project-based modern company, Cat and Fish Dances, located in Utah. In 2019 Roxanne became a guest artist with Ballet Theater Company in Hartford and joined The Dance Collective as a resident artist. Roxanne currently is an Old World Archaeology graduate student pursing her Ph.D. at the University of Connecticut. She is thrilled to continue to perform while continuing her education.

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Katie Bittner

Resident Artist, Instructor

Katie Bittner grew up in Rocky Mount, North Carolina where she trained primarily in classical ballet through high school. She attended the University of Hartford in 2012, where she earned a BFA in Ballet Pedagogy and developed and expanded her skill in the contemporary dance realm. Her teaching experience includes CDF Freedom School and CREC programs, Nutmeg Conservatory in Torrington CT, and Ballet Theatre Company in West Hartford. Her professional performance experience includes works from choreographer Takehiro Ueyama, Hartford-based choreographer and director Darlene Zoller, and The Dance Collective among others. She is excited to take part in TDC’s vision for growing the dance scene in Hartford and promoting a love for the art form.

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Taylor Zappone

Resident Artist, Instructor

Taylor Zappone is a dancer, choreographer, teaching artist and poet who has been based in Connecticut for 2 years. A Waterbury native, Taylor is thrilled to be back dancing and advocating for the arts in her home state. After receiving her BFA from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia in 2017, she spent a year as a freelance dancer and choreographer in New York City. There she performed and presented some of her own work at several venues in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Since returning to Connecticut, Taylor has been lucky enough to work with the Judy Dworin Performance Project, Peter Kyle, and Rebecca Pappas. She is eagerly looking forward to her first season as a Resident Artist with The Dance Collective.

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Jasmine Stack

Collective Choreographer, Instructor

Jasmine Stack, originally from Phoenix, Arizona, is a visual and movement artist whose heart never left the desert. Her love of bridging creative movement and ecology drives her dance practice, connecting the self to space and those that inhabit it. Since earning her MFA in Modern Dance from the University of Utah, Jasmine has produced and collaborated on a wide range of work, including multimedia dance theater, experimental opera, site-specific improvisation, and community-directed dance for protests and rallies. Her work has been featured at the Phoenix Center for the Arts, Herberger Theatre, American College Dance Festival West, Beta Dance Festival, and Salt Dance Fest. She is thrilled to be joining The Hartford Dance Collective as a choreographer in residence this year!


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Susannah Marchese

Instructor

Susannah Marchese began her early ballet training in New York with Andre and Leda Eglevsky and later danced with The Eglevsky Ballet before spending several years as a Principal Dancer with Ballet Omaha under the directorship of Robert Vickrey and as Principal Dancer with The Hartford Ballet under the directorship of Michael Uthoff. During her career, Ms. Marchese danced lead roles including Swanhilda in Coppelia, The Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Lise in La Fille Mal Gardee, Tchaikovsky Pas De Deux, Allegro Brillante, Serenade and Flower Festival. As a dancer and rehearsal assistant, Ms. Marchese has been honored to work alongside Samantha Dunster, Peter Anastos, Loyce Houlton, James Sewell, Edward Vilella, Michael Uthoff, Gemze DeLappe, Angel Corella, Bruce Marks, Xiomara Reyes, Gianni DiMarco, Joan Lazarus, John Gardner and Amanda McKerrow.

In 1994, Marchese joined the Broadway show The Phantom of The Opera where she remained for 3 years. Ms. Marchese spent several years at Radio City Music Hall, New York City Opera, The Metropolitan Opera, The Houston Grand Opera, The MUNY, James Sewell Ballet, and has danced in countries around the world including Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Uruguay, Chile, Brazil, Argentina and Canada.

Locally, Ms. Marchese has taught ballet at the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts, Hartt Community Division and for 15 years was owner of PHIT Pilates Studio in Hartford. Most recently, Ms. Marchese was School Director for School of Ballet Hartford and has acted as Interim Chair of Dance, faculty member, Ballet Master and Production Coordinator for the Hartt School Community Division Dance Department. During her tenure, Ms. Marchese choreographed the original full-length ballets The Red Shoes and The Swan Princess, as well as Symphony #8, The Nutcracker, Passo and The Young Composers Projects GO and Rituals of an Unknown Continent.

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Jane Krantz

Company Manager, Vice President, Resident Artist, Instructor

Jane Krantz grew up performing and competing nationally with the American Youth Dance Company, based in Bergen County, NJ. Since graduating with a BFA in Dance from the Hartt School in 2015, she has worked as a freelance dance artist; which has given her the opportunity to perform in Scotland, Mexico, and across the U.S. Currently, she is the Vice President of The Hartford Dance Collective, and has performed with the Collective around the country. She continues to teach as an Adjunct Professor of Dance at the Hartt School in the theatre division. In 2020, Jane founded Afterglow Studio, a space for yoga + wellness; with a goal to bring more yoga and community to the Hartford area and beyond.

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Rosanna Karabetsos

Artistic Advisor, Resident Artist, Instructor

Rosanna Karabetsos is a freelance choreographer and performance artist based in New York City. She graduated from the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts after 15 years of competing in regional and national dance competitions and has since been dancing professionally. Rosanna is currently on the NBA Brooklynettes dance team. Leading up to her time with the NBA, Rosanna has spent the past 5 years working closely with the WNBA Connecticut Sun at Mohegan Sun Arena, stage managing and assisting the Game Entertainment and Presentation team under the mentorship of Claire Czerniuk. She enjoyed dancing on the sidelines for both teams the arena houses, the NLL New England Black Wolves Howlers Dance Team and WNBA Connecticut Sun Solar Power Dance Team. Rosanna has worked closely with companies including Man in Motion, DFX Entertainment, Scapegoat Garden, TNMOT AZTRO, Flux Momentum, and has worked with well known artists such as Alyson Stoner, Clinton Sparks, New Kids on the Block, and more.  In addition, Rosanna has worked on numerous unique and interdisciplinary projects such as choreographing and puppeteering in Nightfall; an annual community performance that features music, theater, dance, and Anne Cubberly’s legendary giant puppets. Rosanna looks forward to continuing to choreograph and collaborate with the Dance Collective in her fourth season as a Resident Artist!

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Katie Schenker

Resident Artist, Instructor

Katie Schenker is a classically trained ballet dancer and graduate of The Hartt School. She holds a BFA in Dance with an Emphasis in Pedagogy. During her time there, she performed works by Balanchine, Fokine, Petipa, Limón, and Humphrey. She also had the opportunity to perform several original works by guest choreographers Charlotte Griffin, Gemma Bond, Viktor Plotnikov, Gregory Dolbashian, and Erin Dillon. Schenker received her early training in Connecticut at New Haven Ballet, Nutmeg Conservatory, and Academy of Ballet Etudes, where she studied closely with Christina Fagundes. She has attended numerous summer intensive programs including Boston Ballet, American Ballet Theater, Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Danish Dance Masters, and Julidans Festival in Amsterdam.

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Cameron Whitney

Resident Artist, Instructor

Cameron Whitney, growing up in Rochester, New York, began her dance training at the Sandy Stramonine School of Dance. She went on to continue her training at the University of Hartford’s Hartt School Dance Division, where she obtained an emphasis in ballet pedagogy. She graduated magna cum laude with her BFA in the Spring of 2019. Throughout her time with the Hartt School she had the opportunity to study and learn from many renown teachers. She performed numerous new and restaged works including works of Martha Graham, José Limón, Brian Arias, Grabrielle Lamb, B.J. Sullivan, Stephen Pier, Katie Stevinson- Nollet and more.  Now residing in Hartford, Connecticut, Cameron is working as Office Coordinator and faculty member of the Hartt School Community Division Dance Department. She is looking forward to being a part of the Dance Collective as a Resident Artist for the year of 2020.

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Jasmine McPherson

Resident Artist, Instructor

Jasmine McPherson dances full time with Studio-8-Sixty, where she trains in all styles of dance including modern, jazz, popping and locking, hip hop, and contemporary. Jasmine currently performs with the 860 Dance Crew Senior division dance team, WNBA Connecticut Sun dance team, New England Black Wolves Howlers dance team, as well as Dimensional Dance Company. Aside from dancing, she teaches a youth Jazz class and co-coaches the 860 Dance Crew Junior division dance team. Jasmine has choreographed musicals including “Ebony Annie” and “Hairspray! A Soulful Rendition”, for Act Up Theatre, a local youth theatre company in Hartford. When she’s not teaching or performing, she works as the costume coordinator for Studio-8-Sixty.


Frances Fuller

Board Member, Guest Artist

Frances Fuller grew up in Sayreville, New Jersey, where she began her training at Dance Stop Dance Education Center. During her training there she studied ballet, pointe, jazz, contemporary, and tap. To further continue her dance training she attended The Hartt School at the University of Hartford, and in May 2017 received her BFA in Dance: Pedagogy Emphasis, graduating with honors. During her time at The Hartt School, she had the honor of performing works by Jose Limon, Takehiro Ueyama, Doug Varone, Adam Barrach, Lucy Bowen McCauley, and Stephen Pier. Frances has spent her summers training with world-renowned artists and teachers at Kaatsbaan Extreme Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Juidans in Amsterdam, and Doug Varone and Dancers Summer Intensive. In her post-graduate life, you can find her teaching and choreographing for children of all ages. Frances is also an active member of The Dance Collective and has performed in almost all of their shows this past year!

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Marjorie Gross

Board Member, Guest Artist

Marjorie Gross, originally from Columbus, Ohio, graduated magma cum lade from the The Hartt School at the University of Hartford and holds a BFA in dance performance and two minors in entrepreneurial studies and performing arts management. She had the pleasure of performing repertory by Martha Graham, Jose Limón, Takehiro Ueyama, and Doug Varone, as well as original compositions by Adam Barruch, Loni Landon, Stephen Pier, and Katie Stevinson-Nollet. Marjorie is a PMA certified Pilates instructor and currently resides in New York City.