Director of Choreography
Janis Brenner - Choreographic and Music Mentor, Choreography Instructor, The Juilliard School
Janis Brenner is an award-winning dancer/choreographer/singer/teacher and is Artistic Director of Janis Brenner & Dancers in NYC. Known for her “meticulous artistry" (The Village Voice), she has toured in 35 countries and is recognized as a “singular performer” with a multifaceted artistic range. Honors/grants include: NY Dance & Performance Award ("Bessie") for her performance in Meredith Monk’s The Politics of Quiet, Lester Horton Award for Choreography in L.A., NY Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, Fund for US Artists at International Festivals, U.S. State Department, Asian Cultural Council, The Trust for Mutual Understanding, UNESCO, US Embassies in Moscow, Bosnia, Jakarta and Dakar, and a commission for the interdisciplinary work, The Memory Project, from the Whitney Museum of American Art. Her work has been commissioned/restaged on more than 50 companies and colleges worldwide and she performed with Meredith Monk and Vocal Ensemble from 1990 - 2005, 2014 (recording on ECM Records). Ms. Brenner was with the Murray Louis Dance Company from 1977-84, working with Rudolf Nureyev, Placido Domingo, Dave Brubeck Quartet, Joseph Papp, Bat Sheva Dance Company, and Alwin Nikolais. Janis Brenner & Dancers has performed throughout the U.S., Asia, Russia and Europe since 1989 and has been presented by leading NY organizations. The company is known for the caliber of its dancers, its national and international guest residencies as well as its “emotionally authentic” and musically diverse work. Brenner has been on faculty at The Juilliard School since 2009. www.janisbrenner.com
Director of Operations
Gary Taylor has served as the Director of Operations for the NCI for the past four years. He is founder and Artistic Director of the Winston Salem Festival Ballet, is recognized throughout the southeast for his mastery of innovative choreography, partnering, instruction, and performance. A graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts, he has been a professional dancer, working throughout the Southeast for past two decades before retiring from performance in 2006. As an award-winning choreographer and teacher, Gary is a 2-time award winner of the Regional Dance America (RDA) National Choreographic Award, in 1999 & 2006 and in 2004, he was awarded the prestigious RDA Choreographic Commission Award. The North Carolina School of the Arts honored him as the Outstanding North Carolina Teacher in Performing Arts in 1999 and the High Point Area Arts Council presented him with the 2007 Mayor's Teacher Support of the Arts Award.
Gary has been the RDA National Choreography Intensive Director of Operations since 2010. He is currently on faculty with Festival Dance Center, the home of the Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.
Director of Music
Jerome Begin - Music Advisor, The Juilliard School
A founding member of the Left Hand Path Ensemble and freelance composer and performer in New York City. His scores for dance and theater, as well as concert works, have been performed throughout the U.S. and internationally. Commissions include works for Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Juilliard, Sacramento Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Alabama Ballet, Zephyr Dance, Santa Cruz Ballet Theater, Crash, Burn and Die Dance Company, San Jose Dance Theater, Utah Regional Ballet, Monsterless Actors, and Ohio U. Has served as a dance accompanist and teacher of music for dancers at dance festivals, universities, and dance schools throughout the U.S. and abroad. Was music director for the Regional Dance America Craft of Choreography conference for several years.
"Can you teach imagination? I don't know....you can foster it. But one thing that can be taught and learned and muscles flexed on is the craft."