2018 Master Teachers & Guest Artists will be announced over the
Spring and Summer of 2018! Learn more about who taught at the festival last year!
Alexis Fabian was born and raised in the heart of Minnesota. She started dancing when she was four years old and has been in love with it ever since. She studied for 2 years under the direction of Ms. Jin Hanley learning the ways of Martha Graham technique as well as Merce Cunningham at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida. She has worked with Minnesota choreographers, Jolene Konkel and director of CREO Arts & Dance Conservatory, Christa Anderson. She currently is in her 2nd year of teaching at Celebrate! Dance Academy and is in her first year coaching the Concordia High School dance team. She also has free lanced taught and performed around the metro area. She loves the thrill of watching dancers grow in who they are and seeing the big smiles on their faces. When she is not moving and grooving you can find her drinking a big cup of coffee wrapped in a fluffy blanket or being with the people she loves most.
Mike Ford is a Chicago artist who has choreographed for numerous dance and theater productions including works for Bucknell University, Matter Dance, Core Project, Monocle Eclectic, Kokandy Productions, Straw Dog Theater, Mortar Theater, and Concordia College and as a Staging Specialist for Walt Disney World parades and shows. Mr. Ford has performed professionally as an equity dancer at Walt Disney World among other places and for numerous TV specials. Mr. Ford spends his day time hours as an architect, focusing on the preservation of historic buildings.
Kristin Howe received her Bachelor’s degree in Performing Arts, with an emphasis in Dance, from Colorado State University in 2005. During her time with CSU, she studied with Toronto Dance Theatre and at the American Dance Festival (Durham, NC).
She has performed with Korzatkowski Contemporary Dance, Rebound Dance, The Sonic Inertia Performance Group, Labor Force Dances, Wicked Sister Dance Theatre, We Dance (Erin Drummond), Joanna Lees, Jennifer Mack, Kelly Radermacher, Strange and Liebhard New Music and Dance Ensemble, and Jesse Schmitz-Boyd. Kristin’s choreography has been shown at the American College Dance Festival (Long Beach, CA), New Visions Dance Festival (Fort Collins, CO) Rebound Dance Festival (Chicago, IL) The Dance Lab (Minneapolis, MN), Alaska Center for the Performing Arts, (Anchorage, AK) Kinetic Kitchen (Minneapolis, MN) and with Moving Collective (Louisville, KY).
In 2011, she co-founded Alternative Motion Project (AMP) alongside Joanna Lees in her home of Minneapolis, MN. Since AMP’s beginning, Kristin has choreographed 13 world premiers and co-produced 10 evening-length dance performances. As a choreographer, she enjoys collaborating with live musicians and visual artists that have included Steve Howe (beat boxer), Alyssa Anderson (vocalist), Dameun Strange (composer/musician/performer), Richard Haglund (composer/musician/percussionist), Ellen Gustafson (photographer), and Jane Cords-O’Hara (cellist). Kristin is thankful for her husband Steve, her children, Ethan, Clayton, + Vivian, and her family for their continued support. She is thrilled to be a teaching artist and choreographer for Elevate Youth Festival this year!
LINDA MUIR FINNEY
Linda Muir Finney holds a B.F.A. and M.F.A. in Ballet from the University of Utah. She has danced for Ballet West, the Susan Warden Dancers, and Brosseau Danceworks where she also served as Associate Director. She has held faculty appointments at Kansas State University, the University of Kansas, Kent State University, Queens College and at the University of Minnesota. In 2007, Linda received both the Chicago regional Youth America Grand Prix award for Outstanding Teacher of the Year as well as the Dance Teacher Magazine award for Studio Teacher of the Year.
Megan McClellan has been a dynamic presence in the Twin Cities dance scene for over 20 years. She received a 2003 McKnight Artist Fellowship in Dance and City Pages named her a 2012 Artist of the Year. In addition to her 17-year relationship with Shapiro & Smith Dance, Megan has performed for Minnesota jazz master Zoe Sealy, Joe Chvala and the Flying Foot Forum, Black Label Movement, Beyond Ballroom Dance Company, Keane Sense of Rhythm, Guthrie Theater, Ordway Center, Minnesota Opera, Illusion Theater, Walker Art Center and Nautilus Music-Theater, to name a few. Besides dancing for others, she co-founded the dance and theater company Sossy Mechanics with her husband Brian Sostek. Known for their Fred-and-Ginger style dancing, their shows Trick Boxing and Pieces of Eight have toured nationally and internationally to critical acclaim, and led to their winning a 2015 Ivey Award for Playwrighting and Choreography.
Katie is lucky to have worked regionally throughout the Twin Cities and tri-state area, and is a proud company member of Collide Theatrical. She received her BFA in dance from the University of Minnesota and completed the Summer Intern Program at Broadway Dance Center. Her favorite past credits include: State Theater: The Mandatory World Tour with “Weird Al” Yankovic. Cherry Lane Theatre: The Blue Jar. History Theatre/Collide Theatrical: Dance ‘Til You Drop. Collide Theatrical: Dracula, Le Petit Moulin. Minnsky Theatre: Spandex the Musical. Artistry: Mary Poppins, Thoroughly Modern Millie. Other credits include A Chorus Line (Cassie) and NY Couture Fashion Week. Upcoming: Children’s Theatre Company: How the Grinch Stole Christmas; Matilda. katietaintor.com