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Cory-Jeanne Murakami Houck-Cox, BA, ABT® Affiliate Certified Teacher Levels Primary-5 ABT NTC, is a choreographer, coach, teacher and retired prima ballerina. CJ is also certified and licensed in Progressing Ballet Technique®. Currently a national Policy Board Member for NDEO, her credits as a Teaching Artist/Adjunct Faculty include: USF, Adams State, LaRoche College, CSULA, LAUSD Adopt-A-School, and Armand Hammer United World College. By invitation, she attended the Sundance Choreographer’s Lab and has had two screenplays in finals of the Sundance Screenwriters Lab. She was the first ballerina to perform at a Presidential Inaugural Gala Ball. She co-created and performed in“Winter War”& “Proud Heritage”, recipients of Irvine Foundation and National Endowment of the Arts, which were presented at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.. Due to her work with children in arts and education, CJ was named an Aspen Institute Scholar Fellow. She has been a recipient of the Virginia Governor’s School for the Arts Teacher of Excellence Award. She teaches both in Public Schools & Private Sector. Due to her deep belief in National Honor Society for Dance Arts (NHSDA), she has helped charter new chapters in private studios and conservatories. A Master Teacher for the Florida Performing Arts Assessment, she is currently a national adjudicator for dance and ballet competitions. She is a member of IADMS, Classical Dance Alliance, Dance USA, and Americans for the Arts. She is an Ambassador for Russian Pointe International. She has choreographed for ballet companies, opera, pageants, musical theater, and dance festivals. Her choreography has made the YAGP Finals in New York and numerous Overall Awards in various dance competitions. Her former students can be found on Broadway or performing and choreographing throughout the world in both classical and contemporary companies.
Alyssa Hopkins began dancing at the age of three with a local studio, Doxa Dance Studio, in Gainesville, Florida. She continued to dance at Doxa until she dual enrolled at Santa Fe College on scholarship with a focus on dance. While at Santa Fe College, Hopkins had the opportunity to work with choreographers such as Doug Gillespie, Cornelius Carter, Wes Chapman, Stephanie Batten Bland, Joffrey Ballet artistic director Davis Robertson, and Broadway director Evan Pappas. She also had the opportunity during her time in Gainesville to teach dance at Doxa Dance Studio for two years. Hopkins moved to Tampa, Florida where she recently graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in Dance Studies. She has worked with artists such as John Parks, Andee Scott, Bliss Kholmeyer, Jeanne Travers, Paula Nunez, Andrew Carroll, Michael Foley, Heidi Henderson, Cindy Hennessy, Dean Xiao, Alex Ketley, Eileen Hebron, Franco De Vita, Carmela Gallace, and Raymond Lukens. During her time at USF, she has also researched the effectiveness of mental imagery administration by dance educators as a part of the Bachelor of Arts track within the university.
Hopkins is based in Tampa after founding Revelation Art Studios and continues to teach dance classes at her studio.
Hannah Smith is a recent graduate from the University of South Florida where she studied under John Parks, Michael Foley, Andee Scott, Bliss Kohlmyer, Jeanne Travers, Paula Nunez, Osmany Montano, and Andrew Carroll. She has performed original guest works by Robert Moses, Alex Ketley, and Ulysses Dove’s "Vespers" (staged by Alfred Dove).
She has studied in various summer programs under Kevin Quinauo, Catherine Denecy, and Wanjiru Kimuyu in France, and Jennifer Archibald, Attila Joey, and Heidi Henderson in America.
Hannah is a keen choreographer whose perception of intellectual ideas in communication theory shapes her movement invention and quality. As a woman whose truest identity lies in her faith in Jesus Christ, her work in intrinsically Christian. Her belief that humans were created for community, relationship, and intimacy informs her movement and choreography. Her works have been performed in concerts and festivals in Tampa and Atlanta.
Her extensive knowledge in both communication and movement theory allows her to express the relationship between the intellectual and artistic through dance performance. Armed with a BFA in Modern Dance Performance and a BA in Communication, Hannah hopes to continue to make work that challenges the mind, body, and soul in the Tampa Bay area in her own dance company.
It all began with a mouse…. Carla first fell in love with dance after seeing her cousin perform as Minnie Mouse at the age of five. After begging to study dance for an entire year, her parents finally relented and her fate was sealed. Years later, Carla graduated from the Pinellas County Center for the Arts’ dance program before moving to New York City where she graduated from The Juilliard School with a BFA in Dance.
At Juilliard, Carla’s training included intensive study of ballet technique (Vaganova, Cecchetti and Bournonville), modern technique (Graham, Limon and Taylor) and dance composition with several highly regarded teachers in dance, including Benjamin Harkarvy, Ethel Winter, Carolyn Adams, Linda Kent, Ernesto Corvino, Hector Zaraspe, Doris Rudko and Anna Sokolow. While there, Carla performed works by Martha Graham, Paul Taylor, Jose Limon, Alwin Nikolais, Anna Sokolow, Mark Morris and Doris Humphrey, including Diversion of Angels, Esplanade, Missa Brevis, Tensile Involvement, Rooms, Beautiful Day and the role of Mother in Day on Earth.
After graduating from Juilliard, Carla toured the country for 8 years with the Avodah Dance Ensemble and Omega Dance Company as a performer and teacher of modern dance. In 2001, she returned to Florida and started her next great adventure – motherhood. Her passion for teaching dance led her to return to the dance world where become the Modern Dance Director of New Tampa Dance Theatre. From 2005 – 2019, Carla taught modern and ballet technique to hundreds of students and choreographed more than 50 original works for New Tampa Dance Theatre and Dance Theatre of Tampa.
In addition to her professional dance career, Carla has more than 25 years of experience in sales and business development, including 13 years as a professional fundraiser, and she is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE). Previously, she has been the Director of Corporate Giving and Sponsorship at the Straz Center for Performing Arts, the Associate Publisher of Stage Directions Magazine and the Operations Manager of pointe shoe manufacturer Gaynor Minden.
Carla is currently the Director of Philanthropy at Gulfside Healthcare Services where she leads a small-but-mighty development team that is responsible for securing annual, major and planned gifts, as well as producing special fundraising events, to support hospice patient care and bereavement services.
Proud to be a 6th generation Floridian, Carla is a graduate of both the Leadership Tampa and Leadership Pasco programs. She currently serves as a Board Member of the Rotary Club of Wesley Chapel Noon, where she is a Paul Harris Fellow, and as a Board Member of Leadership Pasco. In addition, Carla is a 1st degree black belt in tae kwon do and was a national champion at the US Open for Martial Arts in 2012 and the Battle of Atlanta in 2013.
Carla has been happily married to her husband Robert for nearly 18 years and she has two teenage children, Naomi and Joshua, who are her pride and joy.
Robert Kelley, company member of Moving Current Dance Collective, received his Associates of Arts in Dance Performance from Valencia College in Orlando, Florida and received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance with a concentration in Modern Dance at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida.
Mr. Kelley has had the opportunity to work with and perform the works of many renowned national and international artist including Robert Moses, Alonzo King, Ohad Naharin, Xiao Xiangrong. His international performances include dancing by invitation in the International COCO Festival in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad in 2014 and 2016, Participating in the International Creative Dance Seminar in Beijing, China in 2015, performing in Seoul, South Korea as part of the 7thAnnual Concert: The Society for East-West Music in 2017 and, performing in LEAP Dance Festival in Liverpool, United Kingdom in 2018.
Robert has presented his own choreography at various venues. Mr. Kelley has debuted works that have premiered at Valencia College, as well as work that made its debut at The University of South Florida and St. Petersburg College. Most recent works include the premiere of “Streaming (Wisps)” as part of the 2018 Korean Dance Festival (KoDaFe) in June 2018 and the premiere of “FORMULATED Freeverse”, as part of HOLDING COMMON GROUND: Pathways To Cultural Exchange in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam in April 2019. Both were collaborative works with Florida-based artist, Katrina Soricelli.
Mr. Kelley works and perform as a freelance artist in the South Florida area and is a cook at Ulele in downtown Tampa.