Summer Intensive

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During the summer, BSD offers a two-week dance intensive in June at our studios at 22 High Street. This year’s intensive, divided into three levels, is jam-packed with classes in many different styles and techniques with guest artists and master teachers. Students will continue to take the basics, such as ballet and modern, while also being exposed to other classes such as ballroom, hip-hop, jazz, improvisation, bellydance, viral dance, and more! Featuring guest artists and teachers from around the country. Summer is the BEST time to improve as a dancer. Come sweat with us!

Participating in a dance intensive is a wonderful way for a dancer to improve quickly. Not only is the student fresh in the morning and ready for optimal learning; they will also feel a significant and satisfying difference in their strength and ability in a short period of time. Working with students every day allows the teachers to develop specific themes in depth, without having to wait a whole week to work with a student again. We highly recommend taking all available weeks of the dance intensive for maximum benefit.

Intensive Staff

We are honored and overjoyed to announce an AMAZING line-up of guest teachers this year. We are very excited to include Stephen Pier, Robert Royce, Jesse Tidquist, Gierre Godley, Maxx Passion, Carrie Towle, and Veronica Simas de Souza Rosas amongst the venerable dance masters we have as faculty this summer. Read their bios below for more details!

The Summer Dance Intensive at BSD is a fabulous opportunity for dancers aged 7 & up to experience rigorous and fun training in many styles of dance. Students travel from all over the area to train in this unique and highly respected program with some of the best teachers in the country. Dancers take at least two classes per day in hip hop, contemporary, jazz, ballroom, Dunham, ballet, pointe, Indian classical dance, and more.

Space is limited, so make sure to secure your spot before the sessions fill up!

Stephen Pier has performed throughout the world with the Royal Danish Ballet, the Hamburg Ballet, the José Limón Company, and as a guest artist. His repertoire spanned a vast range including the works of Petipa, Bournonville, Balanchine, Cranko, Kylian, Limón, and Neumeier. He created roles in original works for choreographers John Neumeier, Maurice Béjart, Kim Brandstrup, and Laura Dean. Critically acclaimed as “highly defined, a tour de force,” “a dancer of tremendous taste and insight,” and “one of the most gifted dancers on the modern dance scene today,” Stephen went on to became internationally known as a teacher and coach for both Limón work and ballet. He taught for the Royal Danish Ballet’s company and school while serving as ballet master from 1990-1996. He served on the faculty of the Juilliard School from 1996-2010, Alvin Ailey School, Martha Graham Center, Regional Dance America, New York International Ballet Competition, and for many notable companies in Europe, America, and Asia, including Alvin Ailey, American Dance Theater, Atlanta Ballet, Bat Dor, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, Introdans, Scapino Ballet, New National Theater Tokyo, and Wayne McGregor’s Random Dance. His students have danced in companies around the world, including The Royal Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Forsythe Company, Netherlands Dance Theater, Martha Graham Company, Lar Lubovitch, José Limón Dance Co., Mark Morris Dance Group, Doug Varone Dancers, Cullberg Ballet, Cedar Lake Ensemble, Alvin Ailey, and Bat Sheva.

In 2004, Stephen began PierGroupDance to explore and collaborate with dancers and artists in various art forms. He has created over 40 works for the concert stage, opera, theater, and film. His work has been presented by The Hamburg Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, Royal Danish Theater, Royal Danish Opera, Bat Dor, The New National Theater Tokyo, Juilliard Dance Ensemble, The Di Capo OperaCompany (NYC), Nilas Martins Dance Company, and the Dance on Film Festival at Lincoln Center. In 1998, he was selected to be part of the Jacob’s Pillow Choreographer’s Project. He co-founded and directed the emerging choreographer’s workshop, “Danses,” at the Royal Danish Ballet from 1990-1996

Stephen was the Artistic Director of Juilliard’s innovative Mentoring Program from 2007-2010, and in September 2008, he began a 3-year tenure as director of Visions and Voices: Altria/ABT Women’s Choreography Project at American Ballet Theater. In October 2009, he was recruited for the position of Director of the Dance Division at The Hartt School, University of Hartford.

For more information, visit Stephen’s website:

Robert Royce began his ballet training at Greensboro Ballet in Greensboro, NC at the age of ten. He continued to study at the North Carolina School of the Arts under numerous teachers including Gyula Pandi, Mellissa Hayden, and Duncan Noble. During the summers away from NCSA, Rob attended summer intensives at Pacific Northwest Ballet, Hungarian National Ballet and School of American Ballet. At the age of sixteen, he moved to New York to study under Richard Rapp and Stanley Williams at the School of American Ballet.

Rob danced professionally for Cincinnati Ballet, Dayton Ballet, Alabama Ballet, Ballet Theater of Maryland and the newly formed BalletFleming. During his career, he has performed principal and soloist roles in Nutcracker, Serenade, Dracula, Spring Waters Pas de Deux, Tommy, and many others. He has served as Ballet Master and a staff teacher for Alabama Ballet, Ballet Theatre of Maryland, BalletFleming, and Burklyn Ballet Theatre.

Rob has been training and coaching professional and student dancers for the past sixteen years and has worked on many classical ballets including Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, and Graduation Ball. He has students who are currently dancing for Suzanne Ferrell Ballet, Nashville Ballet’s second company, and Joffrey Ballet’s trainee program. As a choreographer, he has received the 2001 Viewer’s Choice Award in the Scotsman for his Cinderella at the Edinburg Fringe Festival and a four-star review for The Little Mermaid in 2011, both with Burklyn Ballet Theater.

Rob spent the past few years teaching master classes and choreographing across the East Coast as well as working with musical theater companies on numerous productions. He is currently Ballet Master for New York State Ballet and has choreographed Carmina Burana, Dracula and Marriage of Figaro for the NYSB company.

Jesse Tidquist started her ballet training at the age of four. Her love of ballet ultimately led her to The Charleston Ballet in Charleston, West Virginia, where she performed soloist roles in many ballets. She then joined Ballet Theatre of Maryland, also performing soloist roles. She moved to Philadelphia to train under Christopher Fleming and his company BalletFleming, performing in ballets such as Janis and Joe and Gaspar, a Pirate Fantasy.

Jesse has been performing and teaching at Burklyn Ballet Theatre since 2010. While at Burklyn, she has performed many principal roles in classical ballets and soloist roles in contemporary works choreographed by Robert Mills of Oklahoma City Ballet, Alun Jones of Louisville Ballet, Jared Mesa of Western Arkansas Ballet, and her husband, Robert Royce. She joined New York State Ballet in 2017, performing as Mina in Dracula, the Sugarplum Fairy in The Nutcracker, and soloist roles in Carmina BuranaMozart’s Requiem, and Romeo & Juliet. She is looking forward to her second season with the company.

Gierre J. Godley is a dancer, choreographer, and teacher currently living and working in NYC. He began his training in Arkansas under the direction of C. Michael Tidwell and Arleen Sugano, and he also had the privilege of training at the Ailey School. Gierre attended Millikin University, where he received a BS in Biology with a Dance minor, and in 2010, he received his MFA from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. As a choreographer, Gierre has created works for The Steffi Nossen Dance Company, The Ailey School, Threads Dance Projects, Dance Canvas, Sacred Heart University, Eryc Taylor Dance, Fusionworks Dance Company, NYU, Dance on the Lawn, USF at Tampa, and the Tidwell Project Dance Ensemble.

While completing his master’s degree, Gierre furthered his studies in pedagogy and was a founding instructor for the Future Dance & Dancemakers program at NYU. Since then, he has guest taught for numerous universities and companies across the US. His classes have been described as “through the roof with energy and substance!”

In 2010, Gierre created PROJECT 44, an all-male troupe dedicated to showcasing the beauty of male artistry throughout the arts. The group has been performing in various national and international venues since 2010. In 2016, Gierre was awarded the NECF Award and Echo Award. Gierre is currently on faculty at The College of Mount Saint Vincent, Suffolk County Community College, and Connecticut Dance Center, and is a performer in the NYC Bessie Award winning show, “Then She Fell.”

Carrie Towle grew up and did her early training in Vermont at the Brattleboro School of Dance. She studied with the Boston School of Ballet and the New York School of Ballet, and was a dance major at SUNY Purchase. She pursued her love for teaching while dancing with the New Mexico Ballet by teaching at the NMB School and throughout Albuquerque. Carrie has been teaching children, teens, and adults for 25 years and has honed her pedagogy through teaching extensively in Vermont and Massachusetts.  Her teaching credits include Marlboro College, the Brattleboro School of Dance, the Career Center Dance Program at BUHS, the Stoneleigh-Burnham School, Kelly’s Dance Academy, Vermont Academy, The Ballet School at Bement (where she was also the director), and Deerfield Academy. In addition to teaching, Carrie has choreographed extensively and loves to set work on her students. Carrie holds a MA in Counselor Education from the University of NM and resides in VT with her three children.

Maxx Passion is a dance artist based in NYC. She performed with Edisa Weeks/Delirious Dances and the Artichoke Dance Company, and was an artist in residence at OMI Dance International and CAMAC Center D’Art in France. She performs and co-produces dance work with UnderOneDances, which explores ways to engage an audience before, during, and after the performance; she presented a paper on this topic at the Society of Dance History Scholar’s conference in Trondheim, Norway. Her newest adventures include the medium of film, both in the narrative and dance realms; she has produced work for Seat 6 Films in the former and was an adjudicator for the 2019 Opine Film Festival in the latter. Maxx received her BFA from the University of the Arts and her MFA from the University of Michigan, where she was the recipient of the Rackham Merit Fellowship.

Veronica Simas de Souza Rosas
In great demand as a performer, choreographer, and instructor, Veronica has an innate ability to weave the subtle nuances and textures of Eastern music into movement. She has a dance background that includes studies and performances in Middle Eastern, modern, and Latin dance forms, and trained intensively in Kathak with Padma Shri Sunayana Hazarilal. As an educator, Veronica engages with diverse communities of learners at the highest levels of artistic endeavor and critical thinking.

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