// Master Class Series + Workshops //



Velocity’s Master Class Series provides the perfect opportunity to learn from and share experiences with leading dance artists from around the globe. Master classes — ranging from technique, improvisation, creative process and somatics — take place year-round and bring internationally renowned artists to Velocity through partnerships with UW Meany Hall, Seattle Theatre Group, On the Boards and Cornish College for the Arts.

Past Master Classes have included: Mark Haim + Jesse Zaritt, Heidi Henderson, Tere O’Connor (NYC), Kyle Abraham (NYC), Ariel Freedman + Danielle Agami (Gaga USA), Andrew de Lotbinière Harwood (Canada), the Merce Cunningham Dance Company (NYC), Kidd Pivot (Canada/Germany), Mark Morris Dance Group (NYC), Chunky Move (AUS), Miguel Gutierrez (NYC), Keith Hennessy (SF), Kathleen Hermesdorf (SF), K.J. Holmes (NYC), Liz Santoro (NYC), Joy Davis (Countertechnique), Gregory Maqoma (South Africa), and many others.





Contemporary Systems- an interior & material approach to movement by Sidra Bell
OCT 2 / 4:30-6:30PM
OCT 3 + 10 / 12-3PM
Velocity Founders Studio
1621 12th Ave
REGISTER $100 Full Workshop / $30 drop-in (Oct 2) + $45 drop-in (Oct 3 + 10)

In Contemporary Systems, Bell encourages provocative thought and an immersive approach to the subject matter of the body. Her work demands a high degree of physicality and input from the dancers, encouraging them to execute movement with intention, curiosity, sustainability, and empathy. “Bell’s dance-theater works are intensely physical, concentrated and mysterious- yet they reveal the inner aspects of the performers with startling clarity”– The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

SIDRA BELL DANCE NEW YORK is rapidly gaining an international profile for work that reveals aspects of the human condition through a distinctly female lens. Bell’s creations have been described as, “brainy, exuberant, and audacious.” (San Francisco Chronicle). The work demands both physical power and tender expressiveness from her crack ensemble of “fearless and technically honed dancers” (Vancouver’s Georgia Straight). The Company has performed extensively throughout the USA, Europe, Canada, and South America. It was listed as “#1 in Contemporary Dance” by the Pittsburgh Examiner (2014), as one of ArtsATL’s “Notable Dance Performances” (2012), and in the “Top 10 for Best in Dance” by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (2010). Bell’s process is intuitive, collaborative, and emphasizes the integration of multiple design elements. Her work combines design, media, and fashion creating a singular vision in contemporary dance. SIDRA BELL (Artistic Director), is a Master Lecturer at the University of the Arts (Philadelphia), and was an Adjunct Professor at Ball State University (Indiana) and Barnard College (NYC). She has a degree in History from Yale University and an MFA in Choreography from Purchase College. Ms. Bell has won several awards, including a notable 1st Prize for Choreography at the International Solo-Tanz Festival in Stuttgart, Germany. Her critically acclaimed work has been seen throughout the United States and in Denmark, France, Austria, Bulgaria, Turkey, Germany, China, Canada, Aruba, Korea, Brazil, and Greece. Bell has received many commissions from institutions internationally and has produced over 100 new works. Bell was commissioned as the choreographer for the feature film “TEST” set in San Francisco during the height of the AIDS crisis. The movie was nominated for a 2015 Independent Spirit Award. “TEST” was also awarded two grand jury prizes from the Los Angeles Outfest and was a New York Times Critic’s Pick. The film has had many screenings at LGBT festivals worldwide and is enjoying an international theatrical run. She was recently named one of 50 outstanding artists living or working in Westchester County as part of ArtsWestchester’s 50th Anniversary. SBDNY has an extensive educational and mentorship program and works with institutions for dance and theater internationally with a particular emphasis on young artist development.


NOV 13 / 12-4PM
NOV 14 / 2-4PM
Velocity Kawasaki + Founders Studio
 1621 12th Ave
More info coming soon!

ZOE SCOFIELD is the Co-artistic Director of zoe|juniper. She has received a Guggenhem Fellowship, Stranger’s Genius Award, National Dance Project Tour Support, The Mariam McGlone Emerging Choreographer Award from Wesleyan University, Artist Trusts GAP Grant and Artist Fellowship Award, City Arts Innovator Award, Seattle Magazine’s Spotlight Award, Alpert Award Residency and the Princess Grace Foundation Choreography and Special Project Awards. zoe|juniper’s  work has been presented/commissioned by universities, galleries, theaters and dance companies all over the country. Their newest work, BeginAgain premiered at On the Boards & is being presented at The Joyce/3 Legged Dog, PS 122 COIL Festival & Baryshnikov Arts Center, REDCAT, Danceplace and Fringe Arts, 2014-2015. www.zoejuniper.org




001-Bamberg-Fine-Art-6-10-15-Rehearsal-Magee_resizeMASTER CLASS SERIES: WHIM W’HIM
SEPT 5 + 19 / 2-4PM
Velocity Founders Studio 1621 12th Ave
$15 / $12 MVP

These energetic and diverse classes explore the new contemporary dance works premiering in September 2015 at Whim W’Him’s Choreographic Shindig. Join Whim W’Him dancer Thomas Phelan for a fun warm up complete with calisthenics, yoga, ballet, and more. Then, the choreographers will take over and explore their process, base phrases, and intricate details and motivations behind their movement. Participants will learn excerpts from these new works, before they are seen on the stage. Class on 9/5 will be lead by award winning, Switzerland-based Ihsan Rustem and by Whim W’Him artistic director Olivier Wevers on 9/19. Participants in both classes receive a discount code to attend the performances.

Thomas Phelan—originally from Fort Collins, CO, where he received his BA in Performing Arts from Colorado State University. He dacned for Alaska Dance Theater in Anchorage and Whim W’Him since 2014. Since living in Seattle Thomas has had opportunities performing with Ballet Bellevue, Alana Rogers, The Robbie Turner Review, The House of Verlaine, Olympic Ballet Theatre, and International Ballet Theatre.

Ihsan Rustem – Born in London, Ihsan trained at the Rambert School of Ballet and Contemporary Dance. He has danced with Matthew Bourne, Introdans, Berne Ballet, BallettTheater Munich, and Tanz Luzerner Theater. He created ‘State of Matter’ for the Northwest Dance Project, which won the 2012 Sadler’s Wells Global Dance Contest. He has created works all over the world but this will be his first work for Seattle and Whim W’Him.

Olivier Wevers– Dedicated to creating works of artistic innovation and collaboration, Brussels-born Olivier founded Whim W’Him in 2009. He was a principal dancer with Pacific Northwest Ballet and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Wevers has received numerous awards and recognition including the Princess Grace Foundation Choreography Fellowship, City of Seattle Mayor’s Arts Award, the grand prize award an unprecedented two years in a row at the annual Dance Under the Stars Choreography Festival in California, ArtistTrust/ Washington State Arts Commission Fellowship Award, participant in the National Choreographers Initiative and the prestigious New York Choreographic Institute.



Physical Practice: The Good Body
WEDS SEPT 9, 16, 23, 30 / 9:30-11:15AM
Velocity Founders Studio 1621 12th Ave
$15 / $12 MVP

The heart of this class is a holistic organization of the dancer as a body, human and artist. The intellectual goal is to cultivate smart, open minded, unique artists capable of engaging in artistic dialogue. The physical goal is to foster complete freedom of expression, awareness/safety and an innate understanding of one’s own body.

Passive Sequencing promotes joint range of motion, Partner Work reinforces the advantages of rebounding in relation to gravity, and concepts of directional energy relate to how tension, counter tension, momentum and torque can be used to their fullest advantage. We practice the fine balance of having an inner dialogue with the biology while simultaneously maintaining an external awareness and work to contextualize the political, personal and artistic meaning behind why we move, in order to find a deeper resonance when we move.

“When teaching on-going technique classes my goal is to create an atmosphere that allows for personal practice in a community context. It is important for professional dancers to harness our energy on a regular basis, reminding us of our collective power to go forth and make dance. Class is a simple, on-going way of cultivating this strength. I have been teaching advanced physical practice for over 20 years, and it continues to be a source of delight, inspiration and spirituality.”

KT NIEHOFF is an entrepreneurial generative artist, performer and producer working in the field of multi-disciplinary, new performance. Her creative pursuits focus on audience/artist/ proximity, resulting in the majority of her work happening in non-traditional spaces. Niehoff is a veteran teacher of contemporary technique, composition and improvisation. For over 15 years she has taught throughout the U.S. and abroad – Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Oberlin College, Cornish College of the Arts, Tisch School of the Arts, University of Washington, The Hong Kong Academy of the Performing Arts, The SNDO Amsterdam – to name a few. From 1996-2006 she was the Director and co-founder of Velocity Dance Center and in 2011 opened her own creative research space on Capitol Hill called 10 degrees.

Photo by Matthew Murphy


WEDS / 4:30-6PM
Velocity Steward Studio: SEPT 16 + 23
Velocity Kawasaki Studio: 
OCT 7, 14, 21, 28 / NOV 11, 25 / DEC 2, 16

Ballet Master Class Series: Stephanie playfully offers classes that are ballet “revisited”… integrating the contemporary spirit with a historic form. The classes are a reflection of life… an ever changing and porous investigation. We create tasks and use unique images that help to understand anatomy. The lessons evolve around rich spatial and textural approaches and tools, Encouraging curiosity, and exploring risk is factored in. Sequences are patterned structurally and musically to awaken and maintain a taste for lush and precise articulation. Many of the exercises are woven with the work inventive work of Eva Nemeth, as well as other aspects from Qi Gong, Body Balancing and Gyrotonics. These influences play out quickly. Shifts and expansion are palpable. Focus and intention are honed in the room. More is more.

STEPHANIE SALAND performed as a principal dancer with the NYC Ballet for 21 years under the direction of George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins. Based in Seattle and teaching freelance now for 21 years, she continues to explore movement in all ways and has developed a unique and multifaceted approach to dance and life at large. The myriad riches for education in New York: from teachers such as Stanley Williams, Maggie Black, and her colleague Gelsey Kirkland. She was there for the initial pangs of Gyrotonics which fed into the nuance of technique and specificity. She was and is equally inspired and informed through other non-ballet modalities and offers a class that is synthesis and creative response to the valuable aspects of these systems.



master classes + workshops archive

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