Brandi Coleman is the associate artistic director of Jump Rhythm Jazz Project in Chicago and has been a performing and teaching artist with the company since 2001. She received an Emmy Award for her performance in the PBS documentary “Jump Rhythm Jazz Project: Getting There” and recently performed with Jump Rhythm at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts as a part of JUBA!: Masters of Tap and Percussive Dance. Coleman has led residencies and master classes at universities across the country, teaching Jump Rhythm® Technique and re-mounting Jump Rhythm® Repertory to students from the areas of dance, musical theatre and acting. Since 2002, she has served as adjunct lecturer at Northwestern University, and in 2009, she was named to the Associated Student Government’s Faculty Honor Roll. Coleman has a B.A. in dance from Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago and is pursuing her M.F.A. in dance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Nancy Stoy is a graduate of the Canadian College of Dance in Toronto. She is a member of Royal Academy of Dance and of Imperial Society of Teachers of Dance. Her area of emphasis is in Cecchetti Method and Pedagogy. She has performed in Omaha-Dancescape and has taught in the U.S., London and Canada. Stoy teaches in the Halcyone Perlman School of Dance and at Stephens College in Columbia, Mo.
Hettie Barnhill is a Broadway entertainer, mentor and choreographer. Currently recording her debut album titled “Stories of Vy Dixon,” her single “Rock Out” is available for digital download. Barnhill was last seen performing in the production “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” on Broadway. She debuted on Broadway three years ago as an original cast member in the three-time Tony Award-winning production of “FELA!,” a musical directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones and book by Jim Lewis, based on the life and music of the late Nigerian singer Fela Kuti. Her second original cast Broadway show was the Tony Award-nominated production “Leap Of Faith,” a musical based on the 1992 movie “Leap of Faith” starring Steve Martin. The show was directed by Christopher Ashley and choreographed by Sergio Trujillo, with music by Alan Menken.
Off stage, Barnhill uses her art as therapy for people in need. She volunteers through organizations such as Broadway Serves, an organization devoted to providing opportunities for community service to Broadway and theater professionals; and Wonder Women, whose mission is to raise awareness and provide women with opportunities for professional, personal and community development. Since 2006, Barnhill has been involved with A Long Walk Home, Inc., a non-profit organization that uses art therapy and the visual and performance arts to document, to educate and to bring about social change. The organization provides safe and entertaining forums through which the public can learn about healing from and preventing gender violence. She shares with them what has been given to her—a passion for the arts, a love for dance and a listening ear.
Francisco Graciano, a native of San Antonio, Texas, began dancing and acting at an early age. He received a B.F.A. in dance from Stephens College on a male scholarship, and scholarships from the Alvin Ailey School and The Taylor School. He has been a member of Ben Munisteri Dance Company, Cortez & Co. Contemporary/Ballet, Pascal Rioult Dance Theater, as well as a founding member of TAKE Dance and Dusan Tynek Dance Theater. He also appeared in the operas “Aida and White Raven,” directed by Robert Wilson. Graciano joined the Paul Taylor 2 Dance Company in February 2004 and made his debut with the Paul Taylor Dance Company in Granada, Spain in Summer 2006. In 2009, he was listed in "Dance Magazine's 25 to Watch in 2009.” He has taught extensively throughout the nation and internationally and continues to be on the roster at the Taylor School. His own choreography has been presented in New York City and in a number of domestic colleges.
Photo credit Jordan Matters
Russell Sultzbach was a student at the American Ballet Center and The School of Joffrey Ballet. He was chosen by Robert Joffrey for his major dance company where he worked for seven years. Sultzbach performed the principal roles in Agnes DeMille’s “Rodeo,” Sir Fredrick Ashton’s “The Dream,” Kurt Jooss’ “The Green Table” and Jerome Robbins' “Interplay,” “Moves” and “New York Export Opus Jazz.” The legendary Agnes DeMille said of Sultzbach: “He is one of the best young technicians in dance today, a brilliant mime, a true comedian, and an enchanting personality.”
In 1981, Sultzbach returned to Florida to work as a ballet master and choreographer for Southern Ballet Theatre, Orlando’s professional ballet company where he remained until 1993. Now as director of Ballet South, he has choreographed an eclectic repertory for the company, which includes “All-American,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Reflections,” “Valhalla,” “Copacetic Concerto,” “The Four Seasons,” “Phoenix,” “The Nutcracker,” and most recently, the new full-length ballet, “American Carols.”
Morgan Hulen grew up in Columbia, Mo., where he began his dance training at Dancearts of Columbia and Mid-Missouri Dance Theatre. He attended North Carolina School of the Arts for two years and has also studied with the Hungarian National Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Milwaukee Ballet, Minnesota Ballet and the Broadway Theatre Project. For two seasons, he danced as a Corps de Ballet member with the Louisville Ballet and later enjoyed his role as principal dancer with multi-form dance company Tapestry in Austin Texas. Hulen quickly became a very sought after guest artist, and for three years, he performed with numerous companies across the Unites States. He re-joined the Louisville Ballet in 2007, where he enjoyed performing many soloist and principal roles, but most of all enjoyed sharing the stage and his life with his wife, Amanda. He is also gaining recognition as a choreographer and teacher, and in 2009, created Impact Dance Project, a professional Louisville-based dance performance group. In 2010, Hulen joined world-renowned MOMIX and has enjoyed performing around the world with the company.