MCD Intensive Guest and Current Teachers

Contemporary

Alyssa Mitchel is a San Francisco based dancer, choreographer and teacher. Her project is fiscally sponsored by Dancers' Group. The recipient of a Trustee Merit Scholarship, she earned a B.A. in Liberal Studies/Teacher Preparation with a minor in mathematics from the Dominican University of California, graduating Summa Cum Laude with Honors. She’s also a graduate of the career-bound program at Marin Dance Theatre. Alyssa has danced with Garrett+Moulton Productions, SpectorDance, Peter & Co., Labayen Dance and SOULSKIN Dance, among others. Her original and collaborative works have been set on several professional Bay Area dancers and companies and she has shown her work at numerous festivals throughout California. Festivals include but are not limited to the HH11 Dance Festival, San Francisco Movement Arts Festival at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco International Arts Festival, Dance Makers, Dance Mission Choreographer’s Showcase and the Youth American Grande Prix. Upcoming festivals include Seattle International Dance Festival and PUSHfest. She has been granted residencies at Bay Pointe Ballet, SAFEhouse Arts, Mark Foehringer Dance Project | SF and Marin Dance Theatre. Alyssa teaches all levels of contemporary dance, choreography, ballet, and core strength. She’s also a devoted math/study skills tutor for students ranging from elementary school to college. 

Contemporary/Horton

ArVejon Jones was raised in Compton, California. His mother encouraged him to dance, hoping it would help with his weight and health issues as a child. He began taking Tap, Hip Hop, and West African at “Kennedy Universal Dance Designs” in Los Angeles, CA, of which he did for 13 years. He later moved to San Francisco to attend San Francisco State University, where he took his first ballet class. He later decided to double major in Dance and Japanese. ArVejon Jones has performed works by KT Nelson, Brenda Way, Kimi Okada, Kat Roman, Robert Moses, Ray Tadio, Dexandro Montolvo, Natasha Adorlee Johnson, Breton-Tyner Bryan, Raissa Simpson, among others. He was also an apprentice with ODC in 2012, which he had the opportunity to tour with the company. ArVejon has also performed in Atlanta with PUSH Dance Company. In fall of 2014, ArVejon had the amazing opportunity to be featured in “AM/FM,” a film that premiered at the San Francisco Dance Film Festival, choreographed by Robert Moses. On top of performing, he teaches group fitness classes at the Federal Court House and San Francisco State University. This is ArVejon’s first season with Sean Dorsey Dance.

Ballet

Calvin Thomas hailing from Maysville, Kentucky, received his foundational training at the Otto M. Budig Academy of Cincinnati Ballet. He has supplemented his studies at Boston Ballet School, The School of American Ballet, Ballet Austin Academy, and The School of Oregon Ballet Theatre. Performing with the Cincinnati Ballet, Ballet Austin, Company C Contemporary Ballet and NY Theatre Ballet are among some of the highlights of his career. His repertoire includes works by Thang Dao, Gregory Dawson, Yuri Zhukov, and Maurice Causey among others. When not dancing he still enjoys time in the studio sharing knowledge and teaching the next generation of dancers. He has been on faculty with the Contra Costa Ballet Centre for over three years. Calvin is excited and blessed to take the stage with Oakland Ballet Company.

Jazz

Kat Kalotkin born and raised in the California, Bay Area has had great exposure and experience in the west coast dance scene. Her study in dance at the School of the Arts in San Francisco with Alonzo King (Line's contemporary ballet) and The Dance Company with Chris Jacobsen led her to pursue dance in Los Angeles, California by the age of 17. There, she assisted and worked with several well known industry choreographers including Doug Caldwell, Mark Meismer, and Chris Dupré; as well as toured with many conventions such as Tremaine, Dance Excellence and Adrenaline Dance Convention. She was a long time standing member of - the viral, YouTube sensation, hip hop group: THE COMPANY, directed by Pat Cruz of ABDC's  Kinjaz. Currently, Kat is an artistic director and lead choreographer for Mission Dance and Performing Arts, where she teaches competitive Contemporary, Tap, Jazz and Hip Hop teams. At the national level, Kat has received numerous honors and awards for her dynamic choreography. She also guest teaches and choreographs for cutting edge studios across the world. Kat has had great exposure and experience in commercial and company work. Because of her top professional experience, Kat travels immensely to give back and share her knowledge she learned growing up in this entertainment industry. She looks forward to each student she meets and is constantly inspired by this talented new generation. 

Mongolian Circus Stretch

Teri Wing is a San Francisco-based contortionist and seasoned performer. As a contortionist, Teri works as a solo act, duo act, and ambient solo. She is also skilled at ambient ribbon dancing and working with aerial hoops and lollipop lyra. 

Ballet

Leilani Neal began her training at “The Dance Network” under her mother Melinda Neal in Fairfield, Ca. She continued to train with schools such as Contra Costa Ballet, Oakland Ballet, Academy of Ballet, Dance Theatre of Harlem, and received scholarships with Alonzo King Lines Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and Miami City Ballet. She graduated from the dance department at Ruth Asawa School of the Arts in San Francisco, and was hired by her high school shortly after to be the ballet instructor for the musical theatre department.  Leilani has danced professionally with Peninsula Ballet Theatre, Bay Pointe Ballet,Labayen Dance sf, and most recently Oakland Ballet. In addition to dance, she is currently a signed model with Marla Dell Talent Agency which has given her opportunities to be in commercials with Intel, Nikon, Microsoft,Visa, and Ford Go Bikes. She was featured in the Mr.Carmack 2016 Coachella set and danced in the “Romance” music video for island artists CRSB that hit #1 on top charts in Hawaii. Leilani shares the love of dance with her students and aspires to give them the tools to succeed in the dance world and industry.   

Ballet

Rachel Speidel Little a Bay Area based dance professional, maintains a holistic approach to her instruction. Blending her knowledge of Pilates and various other modalities, Rachel places an emphasis on solid mechanics, working with each of her students to understand what works best for their individual instrument. She heavily stresses musicality and the personal inquiry necessary to artistic development.

As a teacher, Rachel draws upon her experience performing with a number of dance companies internationally. They include: the Oakland Ballet, Menlowe Ballet, Amy Seiwert’s Imagery, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal, Sacramento Ballet, Ballet de los Teatres Generalitat Valenciana, Channel Islands Ballet, and the Milwaukee Ballet. Currently, she is a tenured member of the San Francisco Opera’s Corps de Ballet, and is a collaborator for the Milissa Payne Project. She is also frequent guest artist with the San Francisco Symphony, and Sierra Nevada Ballet.

Most recently, Rachel has taught for Walnut Creek’s Civic Arts Education, and the Academy at Oakland Ballet. Given her strong interest in the idea of dance diplomacy, she had the privilege in 2014 to travel to Cape Town, South Africa, to teach as part of the LEAP program at St. Mary’s College.


Jazz

Mindy Armando began her training at an early age of 2.5. She was nose pressed against the studio door watching her sister and was invited in to give it a shot. She continued to study dance through out the years and began teaching at the early age of 15. Mindy has performed with various companies including Virginia School of the Arts, Ballet Arizona, Center Dance Ensemble, and Imation Dance Company. She has choreography awards and judge’s awards for her prior work. Mindy has continued to teach in the Bay Area over the last four years and been a Guest Teacher at various surrounding studios. Mindy enjoys teaching all levels of students from beginning to competition. She is very excited to share her passion with Marin Conservatory of Dance Students. 

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