Micaela Church, MFA, is currently the resident dance faculty for Chandler-Gilbert Community College. She received her MFA from Arizona State University, where she also taught as faculty associate. She has earned both her BA in dance and a BM in viola performance from Alma College. Her commissioned works have most recently been performed at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, WA and Alma College, in Alma, MI. While in Arizona she has choreographed and produced several works shown at ASU, CGCC, MCC and PVCC. She is the co-founder and artistic director of MAC & Company, a 501c3 non-profit Phoenix based modern dance company. Her choreography for MAC & Company has been chosen for performance at dance festivals in Arizona, California and Nevada. She has produced all of MAC & Company’s full length performances and has toured the company throughout the Southwest. She has danced for several companies in addition to MAC & Company, including H.Lab Performance, Convergence Dance Project, Michigan Dance Collective, Northwest Michigan Ballet Theatre, and the Blue Lake International Ballet. She has dance throughout the country and internationally in China and Europe. She presented her research in 2010 on the integration of music and dance at the National Dance Education Organization’s conference.
Li Pei Khoo
Li Pei started ballet training at the age of 11 and has completed the Intermediate level with both Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) and the Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing (CSTD). Upon graduation from Nanyang Technological University with a Bachelor of Accountancy, Li Pei taught children’s ballet for a period of 5 years. Thereafter, Li Pei moved to Arizona, USA, to pursue further studies in Dance Education at Arizona State University (ASU). At ASU, Li Pei studied dance history and philosophy, creative practices, dance pedagogy, and post-modern contemporary technique. She was recognized on the Dean’s List every semester and was also awarded the Special Talent Award in Dance scholarship as well as the Kathy Lindholm Lane Scholarship in Dance Education. In May 2011, Li Pei graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance (Dance Education). She was also the recipient of the ASU School of Dance Award for Outstanding Scholarship and Research. Since graduation, Li Pei has been teaching dance at Copper Canyon High School in Glendale, Arizona.
Megan started dancing at 4 years old at Nancy Chippendales in North Andover, Massachusetts. When she was 6 years old, she moved to Arizona where she would spend the next 15 years training at Bender Performing Arts. During her years of training, she has acquired dance skills such as jazz, ballet, hip hop, tap, contemporary, musical theater, and aerial silks. She spent a year dancing at Master Ballet Academy to learn to dance en pointe. Megan graduated with an Associates in Dance in 2016 and currently works with young dancers at Benders. She hopes to make an impact on future dancers and wants to become a choreographer.
Born and raised in Arizona, Brandon Farrer found inspiration from watching a friend move and was drawn to the art of dancing. He is currently a college student at Paradise Valley Community College working toward his Associates in dance. Brandon plans to continue expanding his knowledge of the art form by achieving a higher education degree. He has performed in the Arizona Dance Festival, and in a variety of shows at PVCC in both faculty and student work. Most recently, he presented his own solo choreography work at the PVCC Spring Dance Collection in 2015. Excited to work with many different people and learn new things, Brandon is an inspired dancer, hopeful of one day becoming a choreographer.
Martha Patricia Hernandez
Martha Hernandez is a born native to Jalisco, Mexico. She was first a painter, and then began her dance training at Metropolitan Arts Institute in 2005. Martha gained additional training from Ballet Arizona, Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance and martial arts. She has performed previously with Physical Graffiti, Center Dance Ensemble, and Roberto Villanueva’s BalaSole Dance Company at Dance Theatre Workshop in New York City. Martha is currently a dance company member of CaZo Dance Company, and both a dancer and aerialist in Silks/Trapeze/Lyra for Scorpius Dance Theater. Recently earning her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance with an emphasis in Media for Dance from Arizona State University, she has produced many works that have earned her awards and recognition.
A California native, Kathleen Kennedy-Estrada is a visual artist, musician and a dancer. She graduated from California State University, Fresno with a BA in Art. While at the university, Kathleen studied painting and performed with various wind ensembles, experiences that now inform her movements as a dancer. After relocating to Arizona, she began taking ballet classes and has not stopped dancing since. She has studied at Glendale Community College and Paradise Valley Community College, performing in several of PVCC’s student collections. Kathleen has also performed with Desert Dance Theater and in Interconnected- A Hybrid Performance.
Mary Schmitz was born and raised in Arizona and has a passion for dance and discovering how dance and science interconnect. She graduated summa cum laude with a BS in chemistry and a minor in dance from Arizona State University in May 2016. Mary began dancing at Paradise Valley Community College as a way deal with stress and soon fell in love with the movement based expression. She has studied ballet, contemporary ballet, modern, postmodern contemporary and choreographic techniques. Mary has performed in The Genesis Dance Project at the Tempe Center for the Arts, in Crystal Lewis’s work at PVCC, and in a variety of graduate dance projects at ASU including See Cha’s thesis project. Mary plans to continue dancing as she pursues further education.
Brandon Trieu, a New York native, is a choreographer raised in Boston, Massachusetts. At the age of 14 he ventured to the southwest, where he is currently based, and began his dance training in modern, contemporary, jazz, and ballet. He then made the conscious decision to pursue this art form which brought him to the school of Film, Dance, and Theatre at Arizona State University as a BFA Dance Education student. In addition, he has studied abroad in London, England at the University of Roehampton gaining experience in contact improvisation, Limon, and Graham technique. Through his dance training, he has had the opportunity to dance under local, national, and international artists such as Vincent Cacialano, Kimberly Bartosik, Kathleen Hermesdorf, Gemma Donohue, Goergia Tegou, Matthew Paluch, and Mary Fitzgerald. He is currently working to develop a company, SomaKinetic Movement Collective, whose mission is to delve deeper into the creative processes, aiming to make work that is equal in athletic rigor and reflection.
Rachael Tucker has followed her dance passion for the past ten years. She received her dance training from various studios around the East Valley and in Minnesota, focusing her training on ballet. After her first performance, Rachael fell in love with the stage and began to follow her dream of being a performer. In the spring of 2011, she decided to focus her studies on dance at Chandler-Gilbert Community College where she studied ballet, modern, and jazz. She has also performed each semester in both the faculty and student dance shows for the college. After joining CGCC's TranscenDance Company in 2012, Rachael has built her experience performing in the American College Dance Association Festival for three consecutive years, the Arizona Dance Festival, and the 2014 Maricopa Artist of Promise Competition at the Phoenix Orpheum Theatre. She was awarded 3rd place in group choreography the year prior for the Maricopa AP competition. She recently graduated with her Associates in Dance from Chandler-Gilbert Community College.