Fall 2021 Adult Beginning Workshops

Adult Beginning Ballet | Tuesdays, 10:00-11:30am

Provided by Tina Anderson Wallum, the class work is based on the principles of classical ballet technique, including turnout, distribution of weight, counter pull, plumb line, balance, squareness, alignment and stance, transfer of weight, lift, and counter balance. Also it is based on centering, core strength, flexor tone, extensor tone, muscle currenting, cogwheeling, coordination, and musicality. By the end of the workshop students should understand a basic level of vocabulary and be able to execute it with ease and confidence. Students are intellectually, emotionally and physically supported with validation, engagement, and a sense of belonging.

Session Two: October 26 – December 8 (6 weeks, no classes November 22-27)

Adult Beginning Modern | Wednesdays, 10:00-11:30am

This workshop with Jennifer Ilse approaches movement with a goal of balance – fluidity in strength, power in softness, centered on breath and economy of movement to teach internal and external body awareness, rhythm and phrasing, and ensemble dancing through modern dance patterns and improvisation.

Session One: September 14 – October 20 (6 weeks)
Session Two: October 26 – December 8 (6 weeks, no classes November 22-27)

Cost: $85/workshop per session

To register, please complete the registration form and make a payment below.

Workshop (please select on option) :
Sessions (please select one option below) :
Student Name:

For more information and to register, please visit MASTER CLASSES & WORKSHOPS at www.tudance.org/programs.

Please read the TU Dance Community Safety Statement (September 1, 2021).

Tina Anderson Wallum has had an extensive career both performing and teaching for over 40 years. She has performed with Minnesota Dance Theater, Ballet Arts, Ballet Minnesota, Ballet of the Dolls, Continental Ballet, The American Contemporary Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet and Savannah Ballet. She has over thirty years of teaching experience with a focus in Classical Ballet, and her work is enriched by her vast knowledge of somatics, and mind-body centering. She has been teaching at the University of Minnesota for 22 years and is currently at studios all over the Twin Cities.

Jennifer Ilse is originally from Wisconsin, Jennifer first studied dance in a professional setting in Duluth, Minnesota. She then moved to Eugene, Oregon to continue her studies at the University of  Oregon. In Eugene she also studied with the Eugene Ballet under Susan Zadoff of Ballet Russe, at Musical Feet school of tap, and performed four seasons with the Dance Theatre of Oregon. After moving to Minneapolis in 1997 she became co-artistic director of the dance/theater/visual art hybrid company Off-Leash Area, with which she has choreographed and directed over 28 full-length productions and created and managed a new venue, the Off-Leash Art Box. She was a City Pages Artist of the Year, has been featured on TPT’s MN Original, received 5 Arts Board Artist Initiative grants, and received 2 Ivey Awards. Ilse is a long time dance teaching artist, teaching ballet, tap and modern dance classes for adults and children over the past 30 years. Jennifer’s modern dance teaching draws from her eclectic movement background in classical modern and releasing styles, contemporary approaches to movement, improvisation, and extensive floorwork.

Photo credit: Tina Anderson Wallum by Abdo Sayegh Rodriguez, Jennifer Ilse by Bill Cameron.


TU Dance is a non-profit, professional contemporary dance company located in St. Paul, Minnesota. Founded in 2004, the company creates and performs choreography celebrating a diversity of styles and dance traditions. Since its founding, TU Dance has changed the Minnesota dance landscape through its performances, presenting work of “buoyant energy and amazing grace” (Dance Magazine) and through its educational programming at TU Dance Center. The Center is a hub for dance education, training and practice that has already become a valued community asset in St. Paul with ties to the national field. TU Dance is committed to building and energizing engagement with dance by interweaving dance genres, inspiring students, hiring and training artists from broadly diverse backgrounds, forming meaningful partnerships, and engaging to a broad community. TU Dance strives to provide opportunities for people of all backgrounds to experience the connective power of dance

Please click below to get more information on each position:

School Coordinator

Administrative Associate

Body Watani (body-as-homeland practice + Arabic dance) Workshop with Leila Awadallah, Aug. 2-6

Please join us for a one-week workshop process with teaching artist, Leila Awadallah. Leila’s works emerge from physicalized reflections and questions around the notion of body-as-homeland by integrating lands, ancestors, and embodied memories’ with traditional Arabic dance forms and historical / present day engagement with both political and settler colonial impacts on bodies / movement / spaces / places. Her research, artistry and activism locates in the context of indigenous Palestine as well as more broadly in Mediterranean and SWANA regions. The week will culminate in an informal studio sharing and discussion. Participants have the option to join for the workshop component only or join for optional morning technique classes.

Workshop Schedule:
Monday, 8/2 & Wednesday, 8/4 at 11:45am-1:15pm and 2:00-4:30pm
Tuesday, 8/3 & Thursday, 8/5 at 11:45am-12:45pm
Friday, 8/6 at 11:45am-1:15pm and 2:00-4:00pm

Tuition: $215

Student Name:

Optional Open Classes (9:30-11:30am):
Monday, 8/2 – Ballet with Abdo Sayegh-Rodriguez
Tuesday, 8/3 – Modern with Alia Kache (Artistic Director of Kachal Dance and former Rehearsal Director of Ailey II)
Wednesday, 8/4 – Ballet with Abdo Sayegh-Rodriguez
Thursday, 8/5 – Modern with Toni Pierce-Sands
Friday, 8/6 – African Dance with Shaylin Watson (dancer with EVIDENCE, A Dance Company)

Open Class fee: $15/class (Please pre-register via email at education@tudance.org 24-hour in advance. Payment for Open Classes will be received at the door)

Leilawa (Leila Awadallah) is a Palestinian American dancer, choreographer, and filmmaker based between Minneapolis and Beirut. In 2019 she began developing Body Watani, an emerging dance project and practice reflecting on notions of home/land through movement research and performance. Now in creative partnership with her sister Noelle Awadallah, they will premiere Body Watani’s first piece, TERRANEA at the Candy Box festival. Leila has received multiple fellowships, grants and residencies to research her practice and create original works; most notably the Jerome Hill Fellowship (2021-2023), Amalgam Residency (2021), Arab American National Museum Residency (2020), Jerome@Camargo Residency (2020), Springboard 20/20 Fellowship (2018-2019), Daring Dances Choreographic Residency & Fellowship (2019), and the Jerome Travel & Research Grant (2018). Her performances and films have been presented extensively in the Twin Cities, the broader Midwest region, and in Lebanon. She received two awards for her performances in festivals at the Lebanese National Theatre (2019). Leila’s artistry as a performer and choreographer is rooted in the formative experiences of working with Ananya Dance Theatre (2014-2019) and co-creating the Kelvin Wailey dance project, as well as her BFA in Dance from the University of Minnesota.

Welcome LaTia Childers as School & Community Engagement Coordinator

Join us as we welcome LaTia Childers as TU Dance’s new School & Community Engagement Coordinator. After working as TU Dance’s Education & Community Engagement Coordinator, bringing with her the knowledge, experience, energy and passion to continue the work that we have done in the past with our community, ​LaTia ​has taken on the new role ​and will be responsible for coordinating under TU Dance’s artistic director Toni Pierce-Sands supervision, all school related  activities. ​She worked closely with ​former ​School Coordinator Maxine Yamazaki, gaining all the necessary experience to ​continue the work. ​

LaTia’s has led the partnership with Sheridan Arts Dual Immersion School, a project supported by a Minnesota State Arts Board Arts Access grant. She will continue her work to revitalize the partnership with academic schools and other organizations while coordinating all activities related to the school.

About LaTia:
Finding interest in dance at the age of 3, LaTia continued to indulge her passion for expressionism through movement. Exposure to Graham and Horton technique, the movement LaTia most identifies with, began at F.A.I.R. school where she attended 6th-8th grade. LaTia continued her pursuit for physical expression through her college experience at the University of Minnesota (Twin Cities campus) where she graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Dance, May 2014, and Mankato State University (Edina) where she is pursuing her Master’s in K-12 Dance Education and Pedagogy. During her artist journey, she has been involved with myriad of artistic collaborations that include the Ordway (Dance To Learn), TU Dance (pre-professional intensives), ACDFA (American College Dance Festival Association) attendee and participate, participant of the 2014 Fringe Festival and many other dance endeavors. LaTia has danced professionally with Threads Dance Project located in Minneapolis, MN as well as Minnesota Dance Ensemble in Saint Cloud, MN. She has also attended Arts Advocacy Day as a student, an independent contractor, as an arts educator, and a board member of Minnesota Citizens for the Arts Advocacy Leader. LaTia plans to continue her Arts Education and Advocacy by actively serving on the MCA board, lobbying at both state and national levels to protect the 47% of the Legacy Amendment, encourage district participation in CreativeMN, and continue her pursuit in higher education/ conferences/ and workshops. LaTia has most recently been appointed to the Board of the Perpich Center for Arts Education and looks forward to sustaining and developing collaborative partnerships as the Education & Community Engagement liason at TU DANCE.


This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and culture heritage fund.


The School at TU Dance Center 2021 Spring Student Showcase VIDEO

The showcase –originally broadcasted on June 22, 2021– will include works featuring the students from the Children & Teen and Pre-Professional Programs that were filmed at the beautiful Raspberry Island in St. Paul, Minnesota. These works were choreographed by TU Dance Center Teaching Artists, and include a new work, entitled Reset, by international guest artist, Marcus Jarrell Willis who worked with the students virtually from Cardiff, Wales over the past year. Reset is a choreographic work, made for film, which reflects not only our current state of being in these challenging times, but also offers insight into the journey that lies ahead for TU Dance. We hope you enjoy this video as we recognize the beautiful work of our students and faculty, and offer a special congratulations to this year’s Pre-Professional student graduates!

Ticket Price Tiers: $10, $15 and $25 (suggested for households)

Select one option (day of the showcase) :
Select one option (in-person or virtual attendance) :
Select one option (payment) :

*Viewing link (Vimeo) will be emailed to ticket buyers within 24 hours. If you purchase more than one ticket, please email us at info@tudance.org and provide additional email address(es) to receive the viewing link. The viewing link will be available for viewing until July 8, 2021.

If you would like to make a donation in support of TU Dance’s activities, please click here.

The School at TU Dance Center 2021 Spring Student Showcase, June 22

Please join us virtually for the The School at TU Dance Center’s 2021 Spring Student Showcase Watch Party. The showcase will include works featuring the students from the Children & Teen and Pre-Professional Programs that were filmed at the beautiful Raspberry Island in St. Paul, Minnesota. These works were choreographed by TU Dance Center Teaching Artists, and include a new work, entitled Reset, by international guest artist, Marcus Jarrell Willis who worked with the students virtually from Cardiff, Wales over the past year. Reset is a choreographic work, made for film, which reflects not only our current state of being in these challenging times, but also offers insight into the journey that lies ahead for TU Dance. We hope you will join us as we recognize the beautiful work of our students and faculty, and offer a special congratulations to this year’s Pre-Professional student graduates!

Tuesday, June 22 at 5:30pm CST

Tickets will be available for purchase until one hour before showcase start time.
Ticket Price Tiers: $10, $15 and $25 (suggested for households)

*Zoom link will be emailed 30 minutes prior to the performance.

If you would like to make a donation in support of TU Dance’s activities, please click here.

In-Person Open Classes at TU Dance Center

TU Dance Center’s open classes are back! Join us for in-person dance classes for intermediate/advanced dancers. To see the schedule visit Open Class Schedule.

Cost: $15 (please pre-register a minimum of 24 hours in advance)

If using a Class Card or reserving a place as a TU Dance Center Teaching Artist, please email us at education@tudance.org with your name, class title and class date at least 24 hours in advance. Upon arrival at TU Dance Center, please present your class card to a TU Dance staff member or Teaching Artist.

Please select the class you wish to take: :
Please select a payment option: :
Student Name:

TU Dance Center is continuing to have COVID-related restrictions. A limited number of dancers will be allowed per class. Dancers must complete the TU Dance Center Health Self-Assessment  within 24 hours of class start time, and must practice social distancing and wear a mask during their visit and while taking dance classes. These classes will be provided only in person.


TU Dance Community Safety Statement 090121

Summer 2021 | Equipoise Program, July 28-August 24

In partnering with TU Dance, Equipoise will provide the unique, hybrid (online/in person), opportunity of having individualized curriculum alongside one-on-one assessment sessions and coaching that compliment and deepen professional training. (see the Equipoise TU Dance Flyer)

In addition to the TU Dance Summer Intensive classes, Equipoise will provide the following workshops and sessions:

  • Self care/Health & Wellbeing
  • Contract fluency
  • Audition coaching
  • Self advocacy
  • Personal & professional budgeting
  • Personal branding
  • Injury prevention
  • Resume preparation
  • Workers rights
  • and more

Click here to download the Summer 2021 Equipoise Program Daily Schedule.

Click here to download the 2021 Pre-Professional Summer Intensive Levels 4-5 Daily Schedule.

Equipoise’s selection process is a deliberate and intentional effort to create a diverse, inclusive community of artists. Interested students should submit the Summer 2021 | Equipoise Program Artist Application Form and a video link of an example of the applicant’s dancing by July 23, 2021. Students will be notified with registration instructions. Students must be accepted and enrolled in the TU Dance Pre-Professional Summer Intensive Levels 4-5 to apply for the Equipoise Program.

If applicants are more comfortable communicating responses verbally, please submit a video, of 3 minutes or less, in lieu of a written reply.

Scholarships and payment plans are available for qualifying students. Scholarship application deadline: July 26, 2021. Please contact TU Dance School Coordinator Maxine Yamazaki at education@tudance.org or (612) 235-7634 for more information.

Tuition: $545 (in addition to TU Dance Summer Intensive Level 4-5 tuition $1,325)

Registration Deadline Extended: July 23, 2021

Equipoise is a diverse collective of established professionals offering expertise in relevant areas of the performing arts – supporting and mentoring young dance artists and providing tools and resources to nurture the growth, development, and success of professionally oriented dancers.

The Equipoise Team

Alia Kache | Choreographer, Educator, Former Rehearsal Director of Ailey II, Current Swing for Disney’s The Lion King (Broadway & Tour).

Ruthlyn Salomons | AAADT, The White Oak Dance Project, Donald Byrd/The Group, Resident Dance Supervisor of The Lion King Broadway Company.

Dr. Carol Marie Webster | Sociocultural anthropologist and performance researcher working at intersections of Arts, Health, Healing and Activism.

Ron Vodicka | Labor Advocate, Lighting Designer. Stage Manager, Production Manager for artists and companies around the world. Currently the PSM for The Lion King on Broadway.

Nina Wurtzel | NYC Dance photographer, NY Times, Dance Magazine, Broadway World, BCEFA/DRA, top dance and theater companies. Former dancer with Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, and

Huong Hoang | Producer, Manager, Arts administrator. Currently General Manager at The Joyce Theater Foundation in NYC.

To learn more about The Equipoise Team click here.

Youth Inspiring Youth: Celebrating Amanda Gorman

Celebrating the accomplishments of the vibrant local, national and international youth with the purpose of inspiring our TU Dance Center’s youth and the community at large. This educational activity creates yet another space at TU Dance Center to elevate our youth. Students from The School at TU Dance Center will bring forward a young individual that inspires them for their work in any discipline, and answer the question: why am I inspired by [name]?. The selected youth and their journey will be shared with the community at TU Dance Center, social media channels and newsletters.

A series of Town Halls will be scheduled to spark conversation and learn about our youth being inspired by youth. Youth Inspiring Youth is a great opportunity to engage our community in a positive and uplifting way. More information coming soon!

Youth: the period between childhood and adult age. What is adult age? How do we define youth? How do YOU define youth?

To kick off this activity the staff of TU Dance has selected Amanda Gorman as the first YOUTH INSPIRING YOUTH!

Amanda Gorman
Wordsmith. Change-maker.

Gorman is an American poet and activist. Her work focuses on issues
of oppression, feminism, race, and marginalization, as well as the African diaspora. Gorman was the first person to be named National Youth Poet Laureate.

Age 22

(Read more about Amanda Gorman)

Photos: (top) Amanda Gorman by Kelia Anne for Rolling Stone magazine; (bottom) Amanda Gorman courtesy of theamandagorman.com

Dance Thrives Here | April 28, 2021

Join us, as TU Dance virtually embodies an evening of performances and celebration featuring works by renowned choreographer Ronald K. Brown. Dance lives and thrives in the bodies of the artists at TU Dance Center, bringing in the energy to move forward into the future we envision. By centering the location of this energy in the body, we are reminded that whether it be on zoom, in our homes, in the studio, or on a stage, we all continue to connect through dance.

Dance Thrives Here… will include:

  • Voices from the students, alumni, artists, parents, board and audience members
  • Three recorded works by Ronald K. Brown. Clear as Tear Water originally created for Toni Pierce-Sands and Where the Light Shines Through performed by the company, and Four Corners performed by the students of The School at TU Dance Center
  • A celebratory toast…be ready to raise your glass!
  • Post-show discussion with Toni Pierce-Sands, Ronald K. Brown Artistic Director, and Arcell Cabuag Associate Artistic Director of Evidence a Dance Company

Wednesday, April 28th at 7:00 pm (CST).

The length of the event is approximately 45 minutes. Zoom link will be emailed to those registered 24 hours in advance.

Please register for this FREE event here.

Donations are welcomed @ www.givemn.org/story/dance-thrives-here.

Photo: TU Dance Center mural designed by Lela Pierce and created in collaboration with the community. Copyrighted ©

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