Colby Damon – January 23, 2015

          Colby has spent his entire life exploring various types of movement. Born and raised in Richmond VA, Colby was active in various sports as a young child, including snow skiing and sailing, but he found his true calling in the arts, and began formal classical ballet training at age 7 at the RIchmond Ballet. At age 15, he left home to attend the Virginia School of the Arts in Lynchburg, VA, a pre-professional boarding high school for dancers, and spent his summers training at the Boston Ballet. Upon graduation, Colby joined the Sacramento Ballet, where for five years he performed soloist and principal roles in numerous classical and contemporary pieces, including works by George Balanchine, Glen Tetley, Trey McIntyre, Dwight Rhoden, Helen Pickett, John Selya, and Ron Cunningham. While living in California, Colby also began studying Qi Gong and Chen style Tai Ji Quan with renowned Grandmaster Bing Fan YeYoung, and eventually received certification to teach.

           In 2007, Colby relocated to Brooklyn , NY, in order to explore life’s options, and to pursue a career as a freelance artist. As a guest artist, he has worked with such companies as Mark Morris Dance Group, Northwest Dance Project, Amy Seiwert’s Imagery, and Thang Dao Dance Company, in addition to projects with Luca Veggetti (Guggenheim Museum/Colombia University), Adam Hendrickson (Carnegie Hall/Yale University), and John Selya (Joyce Soho). He has also appeared with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet as a principal in Alexei Ratmanski’sAida, as well as in Mark Morris’ Orfeo e Euridice, at which time he was featured in a MET Live in HD broadcast in movie theaters worldwide. While living in New York, Colby also began studying other forms of Chinese Martial arts, including Ba Gua Zhuang, and also embarked on a personal study of Yoga.

           In 2008, Colby joined BalletX in Philadelphia, PA. As a company member, Colby has been featured in over 20 world premiers, including original creations by Alex Ketley, Annabelle Lopez-Ochoa, Jodi Gates, James Gregg, Adam Barruch, Loni Landon, Tobin DelCuore, Mauro Astolfi, Matthew Prescott, Matthew Neenan, and others, and performed in such venues as the Laguna Dance Festival, the Vail International Dance Festival, and Joyce Theater NYC.

           As a choreographer, Colby’s style blends an inevitable fluidity with a sense of classical line and virtuosity. He began his choreographic explorations while dancing with the Sacramento Ballet, where he produced a total of five works on fellow company members, including the piece 3 to 1, which was performed for the Sacramento Ballet’s annual contemporary repertoire program, Modern Masters, in 2004. Recently, after years of integrating a personal, daily yoga practice into his dance regime, Colby completed his 200 hour yoga teacher training through Sadhana Yoga School, and is a registered yoga teacher currently based out of Philadelphia, PA.

Scholarship Audition Day

Everyone join us for our Dance Scholarship Audition Day!

Date: January 17, 2015

Scholarship Awards:
Awards are competitive and vary from $500 to $5,000 renewable annually.

Audition Time:

  • 8:30 a.m. registration
  • followed by presentation and technique classes
  • solo auditions until late afternoon.

Audition Material:

  • 1. Participate in Ballet and Modern Dance Technique classes.
  • 2. Perform a solo in either Ballet, Jazz, Modern, or Tap. 90 seconds maximum.
  • 3. Interview with dance faculty.

 After submitting the Dance Scholarship Application, please follow up and send the following:

  • 1. Letter stating interest in dance.
  • 2. Résumé.
  • 3. One letter of recommendation from dance teacher.
  • 4. Recent dance photograph (includes head and body).

Mail To:
Timothy Cowart
Dance Department Scholarship Auditions
DeSales University
2755 Station Avenue
Center Valley, PA 18034

Telephone: (610) 282-1100, Ext. 1663 • Fax: (610) 282-2240

Deadline January  9, 2015

Susan Moran – December 5, 2014

Susan Moran master teacher at Power Pilates


Susan has been teaching Pilates for 25 yrs. She received her training in 1988 from Romana Kryzanowska. She was co-owner/Creator of Power Pilates for the last 20 years. During that time Susan certified over 10,000 people worldwide. She is a teacher of teachers, clients, and loves to work with children. Prior to Power Pilates Susan danced with Doug Elkins Dance Company where she won the coveted Bessie award. She toured the world with Elkins performing for 10 yrs. During that time she received her license as a massage therapist that further informed her mastery of body mechanics and alignment in her Pilates work. She is always inspired by those that she teaches, and will forever be a student of movement. Her philosophy is Movement heals and should always bring a smile to your heart and soul!

SuLu Pilates is dedicated to providing the finest Classical Pilates workouts that are fun, safe, and effective. A strong core, long lean muscles and increased flexibility are yours for the taking. All you will need for class is the desire to move and change your body. Come prepared to move, sweat, and have some fun!

BodyVox- November 21, 2014

Six is a crowd: boys meet girl. Photo: David Krebbs

Led by Emmy Award-winning choreographers Jamey Hampton and Ashley Roland, BodyVox is known for its virtual virtuously, distinctive wit and unique ability to combine dance, theater, and film into breathtaking productions rich in imagery, athleticism and humor. Since its founding in 1997, BodyVox has toured critical acclaim on stages around the world, developing 8 award-winning films, 20 original shows and 3 operas, featuring nearly 200 original dancers.

Based in Portland, Oregon, BodyVox’s movement surges from a fascination with endless possibilities of human body in motion, informed by years of cross training and layers of experience. Hampton and Roland are distinguished artists on the world stage, formed by their years working as creators and performers with innovative dance companies such as Momix, ISO Dance, and Pilobolus. BodyVox builds upon this tradition of excellence with  a unique voice that is equally influenced by its Northwest roots and world wide.

Screendance Festival 2014!

Come out and see our Screendance Festival November 21 and 22 at 8 pm!

November 21st will be a viewing of awarding-winning films by Jamey Hampton and Ashley Rolland (in collaboration with filmmaker Mitchell Rose) of the Portland, Oregon based dance company BodyVox.

November 22nd will be a viewing of the 48-hour Screendance Challenge, featuring the work our dance and TV/film majors, will also be adjudicated by BodyVox guest artist Jamey Hampton.

In Defense of the Dance Major

dooling blog pic

Shannon Dooling, a 2007 DeSales Graduate recently posted an intriguing blog post called “In Defense of the Dance Major”.  In the blog post, Shannon talks about the importance of the dance major and her personal experiences in the dance world. We are very proud of our alumni student! Go Shannon!

Click here to view the article: In Defense of the Dance Major






2013-2014 Residencies

Jeff Shade
jeff shade blog 2

This past semester, Jeff Shade came to set work on our dancers for the 2014 Dance Ensemble Concert!  His piece entitled, Cirque de Danse was a great addition to the concert and was a huge hit with audience members!  Throughout his residency, Jeff Shade also taught several master classes incorporating musical theater style and technique. The DeSales Dance Department thanks Jeff Shade for an awesome residency!

Jeff Shade’s Biography:

Mentored by Bob Fosse – – Jeff Shade has danced on Broadway in SWEET CHARITY, CHICAGO (dance captain) and TEDDY & ALICE. He has been a guest on the Rosie O’Donnell Show, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood, HBO Christmas, THE TODAY SHOW, and numerous other tv specials. He has also been featured at Radio City Music Hall!!! His choreography has received critical acclaim, including a rave in VARIETY, a New York Musical Theater Festival BEST CHOREOGRAPHY AWARD, and a recent nomination for a Carbonell Award. His choreography has been seen off-Broadway (Atlantic Theater and Chelsea Playhouse), on American and Japanese Television, and on stages around the world! He has been on the faculty of Harvard University, the Boston Conservatory, Marymount Manhattan College, Montclair State University, STEPS on BROADWAY, CAP 21, and Point Park University! He has an MA in dance therapy (psychotherapy that includes the creative arts), an MBA in marketing from Columbia University, and he is the founder of HOUSE OF THE ROSES dance- based outreach network (helping to build self-esteem and confidence in hundreds of NYC homeless children every week). He is here to make dances, train dancers, and DANCE IT FORWARD!!!

Natalie Desch

natalie desch blog

Natalie Desch was chosen specifically by senior dance majors to choreograph their senior piece which was showcased in the 2014 Dance Ensemble Concert! Throughout the residency, Natalie rehearsed with the seniors to create a piece that was both unique and personal for the cast.  Aside from working with the senior class, Natalie Desch also took the time to teach modern master classes and answer questions for students about her experiences in the dance world!

Natalie Desch’s Biography:

Natalie Desch, originally from New Castle, PA, received her BFA and the Martha Hill Prize from the Juilliard School under the direction of Benjamin Harkarvy.  From 1996 to 2001 she performed with the Limón Dance Company in an array of classic twentieth-century works, (Limón, Kylián, Maslow, McKayle, Tudor,) as well as being a collaborator in original works, (Haim, Siegenfeld, Varone.)  In 2001 she joined Doug Varone and Dancers and was part of the creation of over twenty-five works with Varone, including collaborations at the Metropolitan Opera, Opera Colorado, Minnesota Opera, Longleaf Opera, Palm Beach Opera, and the Aquila Theater Company.  She served as co-rehearsal director for the company from 2009 to 2012.  Natalie has additionally worked with choreographers Ariane Anthony, Daniel Charon, Adriane Fang, Toshiko Oiwa, and Jonathan Riedel.  She has taught at Limón and Varone summer workshops, the Bates Dance Festival, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, and at universities around the country.  A faculty member at Hunter College since 2005, Natalie also teaches at the 92nd Street Y and Dance New Amsterdam in NYC. Additionally she has staged the works of Varone, Limón and Kylián on companies and universities, domestically and abroad.  Natalie’s choreography has been presented at the Juilliard Theater, Alice Tully Hall, the Clark Studio Theater, SUNY Purchase, the Limón Dance Company Choreography Project, the Dumbo Dance Festival and at Regional Dance America festivals.

Relay For Life 2014

Dancers Fighting Cancer!

dancers fighting cancer 2014 group

This year the Dance majors took over at Relay! Check out this message from the teams captain, Cristina Siegel:

Relay for life with Dancers Fighting Cancer was a complete success!

We started out on Friday evening and made it all the way until Saturday afternoon! I am so proud of every single person on the team this year, and am happy to announce that with the support of family, friends, and professors, we raised $4,632.41, ranking us #1 out of 16 teams. We were also the biggest team ever with a roster of 36 people!

More big news! Julissa Dee, & Samantha Jones both shaved their heads,and received donations totaling about $400.00 for the cause!! Kaitlyn Maria also was recognized for her constant walking throughout the night, totaling about 30 miles! Also, congratulations to Samantha Burns ($910) Sam Jones ($405) & Jordan Fager ($400) who were our top 3 fundraisers & to Julissa DeJesus, Amanda Lee Sedor, Haley Gilbert, Sarah Rose,Andrea Miller, Kate Sloan, Katie Borrello, & Kristin Gorman for raising over $100 each!

Dancers Fighting Cancer was also recognized for raising the most money in 80 hours, having more than 15 members, having the most spirited team, & for raising the most money at DSU for the American Cancer Society.”

Congratulations to all involved in RELAY, I have been more than blessed to have been able to spend this weekend with you.

dancers fighting cancer 2014 sam

dancers fighting cancer 2014 the teamdancers fighting cancer 2014 sam ad julissa


Registration for 2014 Summer Dance Intensive!


Are you interested in broadening your dance training this summer? Join us for our 2014 Summer Dance Intensive! The Summer Dance Intensive at DeSales University offers professional dance training to students ages 14 and up. The two-week program focuses on technical training in ballet, modern, jazz, and African dance. Additional classes are offered in ballet repertory, modern repertory, pilates, yoga, contact improvisation, and body percussion! We have an awesome roster of teachers lined up this year including: the chair of DeSales Dance Department Timothy Cowart, Camile Armstrong, Janine Bryant, Lavon Patterson, Edit Ginsberg, Janet Peck, Tara Madsen Robbins, as well as Angela Sigley!  The summer intensive will also culminate with an Informal Showing showcasing what students have been working on throughout the two weeks!  Interested in attending but need financial assistance? There are a number of scholarships available for students! The Deadline for scholarship information is due June 1st! Additional information can be found in the registration form below!

2014 summer dance intensive form







2012-2013 Residencies

Christopher Morgan Residency


Christopher Morgan, accompanied by company members, will be in residence Friday, February 1 – Friday, February 8, 2013. He will be setting work on the senior dance majors, which will be premiered in the Spring Dance Ensemble Concert.  Throughout the week, Morgan and his company members will be teaching several dance masterclasses, including classes in modern movement as well as jazz movement.

Christopher Morgan’s Biography:

Christopher K. Morgan grew up in Orange County, CA, and learned the Hula and Polynesian
dances of his Hawaiian ancestors as a child. Discovering ballet, jazz and modern dance at
the age of 17, Christopher studied dance at the University of California Irvine. But after only 2
years in school he was offered a job to dance for Malashock Dance & Company in San Diego.
Thus began his extensive performing career that would have him move to Munich, Washington
DC, New York, Dublin and London. Now, he brings his diverse heritage and nearly 20 years of
experience as a professional dancer, educator, choreographer and arts facilitator to directing his
contemporary dance company Christopher K. Morgan & Artists.

Christopher’s choreography has been called “charming and poignant” by Jennifer Dunning of The
New York Times and been presented in 18 countries on 5 continents, in venues including The
Kennedy Center, La Mama, Theater Artaud, The Maly Theatre (Moscow, Russia) the Hong Kong
Cultural Center and the South Lawn of the White House. His 2010 work +1/-1, won the 2010
Dance Metro DC award for Outstanding New Work. Dance Magazine profiled him in April 2011 as
one of six breakout choreographers in the United States.

A skilled facilitator, Christopher also directs The Dance Omi International Dance Collective, an
annual three-week residency for professional, international dancer/choreographers that takes
place each August in upstate New York. From 2007-2011 Christopher served as Choreographer
in Residence and Rehearsal Director for Washington, DC based CityDance Ensemble. He is
currently the Artist in Residence at American University in Washington DC and is the recipient of
a 2011 Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award for Choreography, a 2012 and 2013
Individual Artist Grant from the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County and a 2013
Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Fellowship in Dance.

About Christopher Morgan’s Company:

Christopher K. Morgan & Artists is a professional contemporary dance company whose work
stems from a belief in the urgency of live performance in an increasingly isolating, commercial,
and digital world. Founded in July 2011, as a vehicle for Morgan’s choreographic exploration of
social and cultural issues, the Company provides a creative outlet for its artists and collaborators
through virtuosic and expressive dance performances.

With a dual residency at CityDance in North Bethesda, MD and The Alden in McLean, VA,
CKM&A demystifies contemporary dance through interactive dialogue and media, while creating
an opportunity for self-reflection for its audiences through its performances.