ADF is fortunate to have some of the most dedicated faculty in the country on its roster.  These individuals form a group of generous, inspired, and accomplished dance artists that are the foundation of the ADF community. They serve as guides and mentors, inspiring students to attain new levels of artistry and physicality. After a summer spent working side by side in the studio, seeing performances together, and dialoguing with one another, students and teachers often forge relationships that last long after the festival is over. We invite you to read about each of our faculty below.

As part of the Dance Professional Workshops, participants are invited to take classes in the Summer Dance Intensive. Check out our Summer Dance Intensive faculty here!

2019 dpw faculty to be announced!

2018 dpw faculty


Ronald K. Brown founded Evidence, A Dance Company in 1985.  He has worked with Mary Anthony Dance Theater, Jennifer Muller/The Works among many other choreographers and artists.  Brown has set works on Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Ailey II, Cleo Parker Robinson Ensemble, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Jennifer Muller/The Works, Jeune Ballet d’Afrique Noire, Ko-Thi Dance Company,  Philadanco, Muntu Dance Theater of Chicago and Ballet Hispanico. He has collaborated with such artists as composer/designer Omotayo Wunmi Olaiya, the late writer Craig G. Harris, director Ernie McClintock’s Jazz Actors Theater, choreographers Patricia Hoffbauer and Rokiya Kone, and composers Robert Een, Oliver Lake, Bernadette Speech, David Simons, and Don Meissner.

Brown choreographed Regina Taylor’s award-winning play, Crowns and won an AUDELCO Award for his work on that production. He has also won a Fred & Adele Astaire Award for Outstanding Choreography in the Tony winning The Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess, adapted by Suzan Lori Parks, arrangement by Diedre Murray & directed by Diane Paulus. In addition Brown was named Def Dance Jam Workshop Mentor of the Year in 2000 and has received the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts Choreographers Fellowship, New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, United States Artists Fellowship, and The Ailey Apex Award for teaching. Brown is a member of Stage Directors & Choreographers Society. www.evidencedance.com

Photo credit: Julieta Cervantes



Gerri Houlihan began her professional training at the Juilliard School, studying with Antony Tudor, Alfredo Corvino, and members of the Martha Graham and Jose Limon dance companies. She performed with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet and the Paul Sanasardo Dance Company and spent five years as a soloist with the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company touring extensively throughout the United States and Europe. Ms. Houlihan has taught or choreographed for such institutions as NY’s High School of the Performing Arts, the University of Wisconsin-ilwaukee, the Bates Dance Festival, the Boston Ballet, the Harvard Summer Dance Center, Meredith College, the University of South Florida, North Carolina School of the Arts, the University of Richmond, the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, and Virginia Commonwealth University. From 1984 to 1987, she directed her own school and company, the Boston Dance Project. She was one of five finalists in the Boston Ballet’s International Choreography Competition. From 1988 to 1999, Ms. Houlihan was on the faculty of New World School of the Arts in Miami, FL. During that time, she was also the artistic director of Houlihan and Dancers. The recipient of two Florida Individual Artist Fellowships in Dance/Choreography in 1991-92 and 1996-97, Houlihan and Dancers was on the touring roster for the state of Florida. She is a member of the board of directors for the Florida Dance Association and also for the American College Dance Association. Ms. Houlihan has been on the faculty of the American Dance Festival from 1981 to 1983 and from 1987 to the present. As an international representative for ADF, she has participated in eighteen international linkages, teaching in Korea, China, Brazil, Paraguay, Chile, Estonia, Poland, the Philippines, Russia, and Mongolia. She is the 2005 recipient of the Balasaraswati Joy Anne Dewey Beinecke Endowed Chair for Distinguished Teaching and a 2012 recipient of the Pearl S. Tyner Distinguished Professor in Teaching Award. She received her MFA in 2007 from the Hollins University/American Dance Festival MFA program. She is the Pearl S. Tyner Distinguished Professor in Teaching at Florida State University.

Photo credit: Sara D. Davis/ADF


Tere O’Connor is Artistic Director of Tere O’Connor Dance. He has created over 40 works for his company and toured these throughout the US, Europe, South America and Canada. He has created numerous commissioned works for other dance companies, including the Lyon Opera Ballet, White Oak Dance Project and solo works for Mikhail Baryshnikov and Jean Butler. O’Connor received a 2013 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award, is a 2009 United States Artist Rockefeller Fellow, and a 1993 Guggenheim Fellow among numerous other grants and awards. His work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, New England Foundation for the Arts/National Dance Project, The MAP Fund, and many others. He has received three “BESSIES”, New York Dance and Performance Awards. In October 2014, he was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. An articulate and provocative educator, O’Connor has taught at festivals and universities around the globe for 25 years. He is a Center for Advanced Studies Professor of Dance at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign where he lives for one semester each year. O’Connor is an active participant in the New York dance community mentoring young artists, teaching, writing, and volunteering in various capacities. BLEED, premiered at BAM’s Next Wave festival in Dec 2013 and continues on a tour in the United States with upcoming stops at On the Boards in Seattle and The Walker Arts Center in Minneapolis. The company will present a week of encore performances of BLEED at Danspace Project in New York City, Dec 18-20, 2014. They will also present two works at the American Realness Festival in Jan 2015, Sister and undersweet in NYC. tereoconnordance.org


Born and raised in Japan, Eiko Otake is a New York-based movement artist, performer, and choreographer who, after working as Eiko & Koma for more than 40 years, now works as a soloist. After studying with Kazuo Ohno and Tatsumi Hijikata in Japan and Manja Chimiel in Germany, Eiko & Koma created 46 interdisciplinary performance works, two career exhibitions, three living installations, and numerous media works. Always performing their own choreography, the pair usually designed and handcrafted all aspects of their works including sets, costumes, and sound. They presented their works in theaters, universities, museums, galleries, outdoor sites, and festivals worldwide, including many appearances at American Dance Festival and Walker Art Center and five seasons in BAM’s Next Wave Festival. From 2009 to 2012 Eiko & Koma produced and toured a multi-faceted Retrospective Project that included creating new performance works, installations, museum exhibitions, and media works; restaging old works; presenting film showings, panels, and lectures. As a part of the Retrospective Project, the Walker Art Center published a comprehensive monograph of their works, Eiko & Koma: Time is Not Even, Space is Not Empty. Eiko & Koma were honored with the first United States Artists Fellowship (2006) and Doris Duke Artist Award (2012). They are the first collaborative pair to share a MacArthur Fellowship (1996) and the first Asian choreographers to receive the Samuel H. Scripps American Dance Festival Award (2004). They also received the Dance Magazine Award (2006). In 2014, Eiko visited irradiated Fukushima, Japan with photographer and historian William Johnston. From this visit came a photograph exhibition at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and a 12-hour solo performance at the Philadelphia’s Amtrak Station in the fall of 2014, which was the start of her solo project A Body in Places. Since then, A Body in Places has toured nationally and internationally. In February and March, 2016, Eiko was the subject of Danspace Project’s 10th annual Platform titled A Body in Places, a month-long curated program in New York City that included daily solos, weekly installations, a film series, a book club, discussions, group solo shows, Talking Duets, and a 24-hour photo exhibition of A Body in Fukushima with many guest performers. Eiko received a special citation from the Bessie Awards for her Platform and also was honored with Art Matters and Anonymous was the Woman grants. In November 2017, Eiko performed all day at three Metropolitan Museum locations (Cloisters, Breuer, and the Fifth Ave) using the seven-hour video she created from her work in Fukushima. Eiko teaches a workshop titled “Delicious Movement” in communities, colleges and art schools.    www.eikoandkoma.org

Photo credit: William Johnston