2015 ACDA Northeast Conference

West Chester, Pennsylvania
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
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NOTE:  If registering prior to October 29, 2014, registration is a TWO-STEP PROCESS. 
Please read Registration Instructions before registration opens.

2015 ACDA Northeast Conference
Wednesday, March 11, 2015 - Saturday, March 14, 2015

West Chester University
Department of Theatre & Dance
2 East Rosedale Ave.
West Chester, Pennsylvania 19383
United States

Map and Directions

Registration opens at 9:00AM local time on the dates indicated

Wednesday, October 8, 2014:                                                                       
  Registration opens for in-region ACDA members.
Use regional conference invitation code

Wednesday, October 15, 2014:   Registration opens for all ACDA members
Use national member invitation code 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014:
  Registration caps per school, if any, are lifted

Wednesday, October 29, 2014:          
  Registration opens for ACDA members, Non-Members, and any schools attending a second conference.
No invitation code required 

Register only the number of participants you are committed to bringing to the conference.

There will be a $25.00 charge for every registrant cancelled prior to full payment. 
There are no refunds on paid registrations.

Payment or proof of intention to pay must be received within
two weeks of your registration to hold registration slots.
Full payment must be received no later than Friday, December 5, 2014.

An email with an invitation code will be sent to all current members the first week of October.
 If you are current ACDA member and do not receive an email with the invitation code by October 6th or if you are in the process of becoming a member, contact the Conference Coordinator immediately.


In order to accommodate more member schools, each school may register a maximum of 20 students between October 8-21.  On October 22, the cap will be lifted and member schools already registered or newly registering will be able to add or register students without a limit. 
Each school is responsible for adding registrants to its own already existing registration.


West Chester University’s Department of Theatre and Dance cordially invites faculty and students to participate in the American College Dance Association's Northeast Conference, Architectural Body, March 11-14, 2015.

The architectural body can apply to both an individual physical body which explores through movement how that body can activate and reflect everyday spaces/places, or the anatomy of creative work as it relates to the design of expression or longevity of a career. Throughout the conference, we will aim to provide opportunities to support this theme, be it through a guest workshop, a scholarly or choreography presentation, or navigating the next steps of your career. Planned are a variety of guest workshops/classes, scholarly research presentations, dance films, opportunities for student and faculty exchanges in and out of the studio, adjudication and informal concerts, feedback sessions, a Welcome Concert featuring professional dance artists from the Philadelphia area, and a Gala Concert. 


Integral to every ACDA conference is the feedback received on adjudicated choreography and performance. For these purposes, we will be joined by three charismatic and respected dance artists, Lisa Kraus, Ursula Payne and Michael Williams.


We would like to accommodate all who wish to attend our conference but space is limited and registration fills very quickly.  Please note that registration begins for all in-region institutional and individual members on Wednesday, October 8, 2014. Our maximum capacity is 400 registrants and 40 adjudicated dances.  We will register participants on a first paid-first registered basis. If spaces remain after in-region member registration, we will open up to out-of-region members. When we reach maximum capacity (probably well before the posted deadline), we will be unable to accept additional participants.


It is highly recommended that you read Registration Instructions carefully before starting to register your group. 

We will register participants on a first registered-first accepted basis. Entering participants through online registration temporarily holds slots for two weeks.  Payment or proof of intention to pay must be received within two weeks of registration in order to guarantee your registration. If payment or proof of intention to pay is not received within two weeks, your slots may be released. Full payment is due for all registrations no later than Friday, December 5, 2014. It is critical that you adhere to the above deadlines to reserve your registration spots.  Information for payment is located in the right sidebar.  Deadlines, fees, registration and membership policies, and registration instructions can be found under the Conference Details tab on this website.

Due to the rising costs of processing cancellations, as well as the negative impact on other ACDA members of holding then releasing slots, a $25.00 cancellation fee will be assessed on each individual registrant cancelled prior to full payment.  There are no refunds on paid registrations.  Register only the number of participants that you are committed to bringing.

Conferences often fill before the closing deadline and when we reach maximum capacity, we will be unable to accept additional participants.  If you are closed out of the conference, email the Conference Coordinator immediately to be put on the waitlist.  Your place on the waitlist is determined by the time and date of your email request.

You need not be an ACDA member to attend the conference, although only institutional members may participate in the adjudication process and only members may register during the member priority period.  Additionally, members pay a discounted registration fee.  If you have not yet joined ACDA, we urge you to do so to help further the important work we do for college and university dance programs and to receive the benefits of membership.

If you are interested in the adjudication process, please refer to the Adjudication Policies.  If you choose to have two pieces adjudicated, at least one piece must be choreographed by a student.  Time and space will limit the number of dances we can adjudicate to no more than 40.  Pieces will be accepted for adjudication, like registration, on a first registered-first accepted basis with payment (or proof of intention to pay) received within two weeks of registration. If payment is not received within that timeframe, slots may be lost. Please remember that you must be an ACDA institutional member in good standing to qualify for adjudication.
For those of you who will be first-time visitors to our area, West Chester University is at the center of the mid-Atlantic corridor between New York City and Washington, D.C., and located in picturesque Chester County, Pennsylvania. The beautiful suburban campus occupies 388 acres in and near the borough of West Chester, just 25 miles west of Philadelphia and 17 miles north of Wilmington, Delaware.

We look forward to seeing you at the conference.

Liz Staruch, Gretchen Studlien-Webb and Maria Urrutia
ACDA Northeast Conference Coordinators
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  Lisa Kraus

Lisa Kraus's career has included performing with Trisha Brown, choreographing and performing for her own company and as an independent, teaching at universities and arts centers, presenting the work of other artists as Coordinator of the Bryn Mawr College Performing Arts Series, and writing reviews, features and essays on dance for internet and print publication. Dancing with the Trisha Brown Dance Company from 1977-82, she continues to restage Brown's work at venues including the Paris Opera Ballet and Venice Biennale. She was on the faculty of the European Dance Development Center in the Netherlands for a decade and has received numerous fellowships and presenting opportunities for her own choreography. Her writing has been published in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Dance Magazine, Dance Research Journal and Contact Quarterly among others. She was a 2010 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Dance Criticism and in 2011 co-founded thINKingDANCE, an online dance journal and dance writers' training scheme based in Philadelphia.
     Ursula Payne

Ursula Payne is a graduate of The Ohio State University where she received her MFA in Dance with specializations in Performance and Direction from Labanotation Score. Payne received advanced training and earned certification as a Certified Movement Analyst from the Laban/Bartenieff Institute of Movement Studies in New York. Ms. Payne formed Mills and Payne dance company with Tiffany Mills and performed in various dance festivals and professional venues in New York City, Toronto-ON, Memphis-TN, Dallas-TX, and Eugene-OR. In addition to her work with Mills and Payne Dance (1995-2000), Payne performed as a dancer with Diane McIntyre in the film “The Beloved” and in McIntyre’s evening length work “Love Poems to God” which premièred at BAM. Payne was also the featured soloist in Eva Gholson’s “For the Love of One”. Since 2000 Payne has functioned as an independent artist receiving four Pennsylvania Council for the Arts choreographic fellowships and numerous commissions from universities and professional dance companies that include Project Motion Dance Company based in Memphis-TN, LABCO Dance and Dance Alloy based in Pittsburgh, Loyola Marymount University, National Taiwan University of the Arts, Mercyhurst University, Spelman University, and Middle Tennessee State University. She has traveled internationally to five continents and throughout the United States as an independent artist and teacher.

Payne’s other credits include staging from labanotation score Robert Battle’s Primate at the American Dance Festival in 2012, Anna Sokolow’s Scenes From The Music of Charles Ives at Slippery Rock University in 2004, and Donald McKayle’s Rainbow Round My Shoulder at The Ohio State University in 1995. Currently Ms. Payne is the chairperson of dance at Slippery Rock University. Other positions held include Co-Director of the Young Dancers School, Director of the Dance Professionals Workshop, Repertory and technique faculty at the American Dance Festival. As a student at ADF in the 90’s Payne was Pearl Primus’s personal assistant which led to the development of the Pearl Primus Archive Repertory Project at the American Dance Festival from 2008-2011. This project utilized primary and secondary materials from ADF’s Pearl Primus Collection as source material for the creation of original choreography. Payne continues her affiliation with ADF by teaching workshops in Motif Writing. In addition to breaking numerous athletic records and being the PA AA State Triple Jump Champion in 1987, Payne was inducted into the Lawrence County Hall of Fame in 2010 for her athletic achievements in Basketball and Track and Field.

  Michael Williams

Michael Williams, Professor of Dance, has had a rich and varied career in the arts. He has Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education and an extensive background in music providing a unique musical perspective and framework for his teaching and choreography. Michael’s early dance training was at the famed Gus Giordano Dance Center in Chicago, where he later became a faculty member in Jazz (1979-1985). He was also a principle dancer in the international touring company, Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago (1980-1984) and continued to serve as a master teacher in Jazz Dance Technique for Giordano Jazz Dance Workshops. Michael has performed in theatrical productions with such stars as Ann Reinking and Chita Rivera. He worked in Tokyo on the Japanese movie musical, Curtain Call with choreographer Michael Shawn. He danced in the PBS Emmy award-winning special, The Rehearsal and is a featured dancer in the widely-distributed instructional video The Jazz Dance Class, both Gus Giordano projects. Michael has worked as a model, dancer and choreographer with many of the countrys top fashion designers on their collection showcases for the Chicago Apparel Center and the Florida Swimwear Association. He performed as a union member of the Actors Equity Association in numerous industrial and corporate productions and in professional musical theater.

Michael’s choreography has been featured at Jazz Dance World Congress (JDWC) international festivals including Piano Man, a dance cartoon - Chicago; Muted Instrument - Nagoya, Japan; and SCAT - The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, D.C. SCAT was set on the touring company of the Amsterdam School of the Arts in Amsterdam, Holland and was performed at venues throughout the Netherlands.  SCAT was in the repertoire of Seattle’s Spectrum Dance Theater for three consecutive seasons with national and international performances. Michael’s choreographic work, POCKETS, holdin a groove!, was performed at the International Theater School Festival in Amsterdam, Holland and opened the Jazz Dance World Congress in Phoenix, AZ. Michael served as Artist in Residence for the Taiwan National Dance Festival in Taipei, Taiwan and was a featured choreographer at the Jazz Dance World Congress in Monterrey, Mexico.  He taught Master Classes in Kids Jazz Dance at the JDWC in San Jose, Costa Rica. Michael danced in The Mature Dance Project, a company of professional dancers over forty, performing Sherry Zunkers A Little Bit of Rhythm and Romance at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, Millennium Park, Chicago, 2009.

Michael’s teaching at the University of Arizona’s School of Dance includes studio work as well as academic offerings. Michael teaches all levels of Jazz Dance Technique as well as Tap Dance Technique. He team teaches two courses in the Dance Curriculum, Teaching Methods for Dance and Dance History. Michael created and continues to teach Careers in Dance, a required business course for both BFA and MFA dance students. He stages work from his own original choreographic repertoire and is committed to creating new choreography each season that incorporates jazz and/or tap for a concert dance setting. Michael enthusiastically fuses a multitude of dance genres in his new contemporary creations.

Michael is Director of the Arizona Jazz Dance Showcase, an annual jazz dance festival attracting approximately 1,000 national participants each year to The University of Arizona. He received the prestigious Charles and Irene Putnam Award for Teaching Excellence in the College of Fine Arts at The University of Arizona and the 2005 Jazz Dance World Congress award for his significant contributions to jazz dance. Michael continuously strives to stretch his creative voice in the genre of his American dance heritage, jazz dance.

Our opening night concert will feature choreographers, companies, and dancers from the Philadelphia area. Philadelphia has a very strong dance community with a variety of resources to help support dance artists. Workshops, classes, and panels with these Philadelphia artists will be included in the conference schedule as space permits. More information on these guest artists will be posted soon!         

All institutional members are invited to bring up to two dances for adjudication, while adjudication slots remain available.  Please read the Adjudication Policies carefully.  Policies are available to download and are included under the Conference Details tab on this website.
You will be able to indicate whether you are bringing one or two dances in the "Adjudication Fees" section in the online registration.  The online system will not allow you to enter a number if adjudication slots have filled.
If you are not an institutional member and would like to participate in the adjudication process, you must begin the process of becoming an Institutional Member before registering to adjudicate work.  A membership application is available on the ACDA website.
Please download ADJUDICATION POLICIES for your reference.

All groups and individuals registered for the conference are eligible to perform in the Informal Concerts.
Dances presented in the Informal Concerts are restricted to work not being adjudicated.  Works-in-progress may be shown.

In the interest of creating opportunities for many schools, only one dance per institution may be shown in the informal concerts; however, more than one piece per school will be considered if space allows.  Performance slots will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. There is a limit of 20 pieces accepted for the informal concert(s).

The maximum time for each work presented in the Informal Concert is 8 minutes.  The burden of meeting the time requirement rests with the choreographer.  ACDA recommends that the choreographer allow a time margin within the 8-minute limit for technical errors or theater peculiarities.
Please submit Informal Concert program information online by Monday, January 12, 2015.

SCHEDULE (subject to change)


At this time, we are planning for the conference to begin in the afternoon of Wednesday, March 11, 2015, and to conclude with a gala concert on the evening of Saturday, March 14. 

A detailed conference schedule will be posted as soon as the information is available.

For a full conference overview, click CONFERENCE SCHEDULE.

        Class Schedule
        Class Descriptions & Teacher Bios
        Adjudication - Schools in Each concert and Tech Rehearsal Schedule
        Informal - Schools in Each concert and Tech Rehearsal Schedule

Please read Instructions for Initial Registration Prior to Oct. 29, 2014 or Instructions for Initial Registration Oct. 29, 2014 & After carefully prior to the opening date of registration. 

If registering prior to October 29, 2014, registration will be in two steps.  In Step One the Faculty Representative will enter names (or placeholders) and contact information for all registrants.  The Faculty Rep. may also reserve spots for adjudication and the informal concert.  On October 29th, you will be asked to re-enter your existing registration to enter details for your school's participation in the conference. Refer to Updating Existing Registrations.

STEP TWO INFORMATION TO BE SUBMITTED ONLINE (under "Details" for the Faculty Rep.):
It is not necessary to submit all information at the same time.  You may return to your registration to add or update information.  Open or download Preparing to Submit Detailed Information to see a full list of information that will be requested.

In all cases, please honor  posted deadlines for information submission.
Submit Program Information for each dance you are adjudicating and/or presenting in the informal concert.  Please be thorough in your answers and accurate in your spelling.
Deadline for completed program information: Monday, January 12, 2015.
  • The Adjudication Program Information fields will be visible only to the Faculty Representative for ACDA Institutional Members and ACDA Board Members.
  • The Informal Concert Program Information fields will be visible to the Faculty Representative for ACDA Institutional Members and Non-Members, ACDA Board Members and Individual registrants.

Teachers are invited to propose classes/workshops, research presentations and panel topics to enhance diversity and the breath of class offerings.  We encourage proposals as they relate to our theme and that go beyond the usual academic dance styles or topics.
The online Teacher Information fields allow faculty members to submit up to three classes/workshops, research presentations and/or panels.  Graduate students may submit up to two different proposals. The conference may not be able to involve all who are interested, but we appreciate your response and will contact teachers as soon as possible regarding selections.  Due to budget constraints, honoraria will not be possible.
            PLEASE NOTE:
The Teacher Information fields will be visible to all faculty members registrants.
           Deadline for submission of Teacher Information: Monday, January 5, 2015.
ACDA is a national membership service organization to strengthen the educational network for students and faculty within the academic setting. Faculty (ACDA members only) who are teaching or presenting at the conference may request a written or oral peer response when registering.  Faculty interested in serving as responders will be able to offer their services when registering.

Note: Peer response/responder requests are no longer part of the online registration process.  The Call for those interested in receiving or providing a peer response will be disseminated by an ACDA Board Member.  ACDA will make every attempt to accommodate requests but cannot guarantee that all requests will be fulfilled.

We invite musicians to participate in the conference, playing for classes in exchange for conference registration and an honorarium of $40.00 per class.  Interaction among musicians will help to make very memorable master classes. Sharing good music gives us new ideas to take home to our own programs and adds vitality to classes.
Musicians should complete requested information online.  Musician fields are visible only to those registering as Musicians.
           Deadline for submission of Musician Information: Monday, January 5, 2015.



The ACDA Northeast region conference coordinators invite proposals for individual papers, panels and roundtables that address the thematic idea of the conference, Architectural Body. The questions below can be used as a point of departure. We are additionally open to proposals that address the full spectrum of dance studies in both theory and practice.

Proposals for panel or roundtable presentations may be submitted on the ACDA registration form, clearly denoting whether it is for faculty only, students only, or open to all. Panel or roundtable presentation submission deadline: Monday, January 5, 2015.

Proposals for individual papers may be submitted on the ACDA registration form, and include research presenter's name, topic/title and brief description of the research. Paper submission deadline: Monday, January 5, 2015.

  • How do artist perceive the as body architecture? How do they implement these ideas into their work?
  • Where and how do bodies and architecture intersect in space?
  • In the collaborative nature of dance how does architecture inform the language of the body in space and time?
  • In the design of architecture how do bodies influence the making of spaces?
  • Architecture and dance engage the ideas of time. Expand on how and why this relationship intersects and moves away from each other.
  • How do artists connect and foster areas of dance disciplines (ie choreography, technical, kinesthetic, design, education, performance) in order to construct a lasting career in dance? How, if at all, does this enhance or affect their artistic practice?
  • How does one uncover the roots within the collective works of a dance artist as it relates to design of expression?
Individual presentations will be allotted no more than 20min slots.


Dance and technology are two areas that are continuously weaving in order to strengthen their connection.  These practices search to challenge and extend individual artistry onto unexplored platforms. In reflection of this continual investigation, the ACDA Northeast region conference coordinators are welcoming submissions that explore dance through the lens of technology. These may include but are not limited to abstract films, experimental shorts, dance/music videos, screen adaptations of stage choreographies, narratives and documentaries.

Submissions that focus on the theme of our conference, Architectural Body, are strongly encouraged.  (This may address how the body is perceived as architecture or how the two forms meet or intersect but other possibilities exist.) We are additionally open to submissions that address the full spectrum of dance studies in both theory and practice.

Dance and Technology submission forms should be sent to ACDAinfo@wcupa.edu and include complete information of artist’s name, affiliated school, a short introduction to the work (50 word max), artist bio (100 word max), and link to view the work. If link is password protected to keep the public from viewing it, please include password in your materials.

Dance and Technology submission deadline: Monday, January 5, 2015.



Each conference participant is required to sign the Liability Waiver. In order to save paper, we are asking all registrants in a group to sign one waiver.  It is important that each registrant understands the terms of the waiver.  Faculty are strongly encouraged to review the terms with all participants.
Return the signed Liability Waiver via FAX, postal service or scanned PDF email attachment.
Each choreographer or representative of a choreographer (for a guest choreographer) of a dance to be performed in the Gala Concert must complete and return a signed Video Waiver during the conference.  Waivers will be given to Gala Concert choreographers once the selections have been determined.  Please note that videos are for archival purposed and copies will not be available.

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Contact Information

  • Coordinators: L.Staruch, G. Studlien-Webb, M.Urrutia

    Email: ACDAinfo@wcupa.edu

    Phone: (610) 436-3463

    FAX: (610) 436-2171

Payment Instructions

  • All checks should be payable to:

    Send payment to:
    Gretchen Studlien-Webb
    Department of Theatre and Dance
    E..O. Bull Center
    West Chester University
    West Chester, PA 19383

    W9 Statement

    WCU Federal ID#: 23-2490021