Choreographers – Chronology, November 11, 2023

We are honored to present the work of 5 locally and nationally renowned female choreographers this November at Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company’s performance of Chronology at the Orem Library Hall.

Artistic Director, Jessica Heaton

Jessica Heaton founded Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company in 2010 and has worked diligently to increase professional dance in Utah County, dedicating countless hours to both the administrative and artistic demands of the company. During her years as company director, Jessica has created 34 major works of choreography, directed 20 shows, and developed the company’s educational outreach programs. Jessica’s choreography has also been commissioned by Studio C, Deseret Book, Mystery Box, and Snow College. Heaton has also volunteered her time with many arts organizations including Artist, Interrupted, Women’s Artistic Leadership Initiative, and Utah Dance Film Festival. Her work in Chronology, a dance film titled Nonlinear, is made possible by The Artists Residency hosted by the Center for Latter Day Saint Arts.

Kaley Pruitt (NY)

Kaley Pruitt is originally from Ketchum, Idaho. She received her MFA in Dance & Choreography from University of Wisconsin Milwaukee where she was awarded the Distinguished Graduate Student Fellowship. She holds her BFA in Dance from Florida State University and was a member of Dance Repertory Theatre directed by Lynda Davis. She also studied at Footlight Dance Centre, Idyllwild Arts Academy, The Boston Conservatory, José Limón Dance Foundation, and with Doug Varone & Dancers. She founded her dance company Kaley Pruitt Dance in 2014 in New York City and has created over 25 works for the stage and screen. Pruitt has been commissioned by Repertory Dance Theatre, Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company, Fem Dance Company, Simantikos Dance Chicago, Illinois Shakespeare Festival, and Illinois State University. Kaley is currently a professor of dance at SUNY Brockport.

Shani Robison

Shani Robison earned her B.A. in Dance in 1995 and her M.A. in Dance with a Performance and Choreography emphasis in 1999 from Brigham Young University. Shani is currently the Co-Artistic Director of Chrysalis Ballet and teaches and choreographs for professional dance companies and schools throughout Utah. Shani was a tenured full-time professor of ballet in the BYU Department of Dance for 19 years where she directed the BYU ballet program for 9 years, directed both ballet companies for a total of 15 years, and taught all levels of ballet technique, pointe, and variations; additionally instructing academic courses such as Dance History and Introduction to Dance. Shani is certified in Stott Pilates Reformer and Mat for all levels, American Ballet Theatre’s National Curriculum Pre-Primary through Levels 5, and Progressing Ballet Technique. Shani is currently a professional faculty at Central Utah Ballet and Lifehouse Academy of the Arts.

Hayley Stoddard

Hayley Stoddard has had a deep love for the arts since she was very young. She consistently finds fulfillment in creation. Hayley graduated with her bachelor’s degree in dance from Brigham Young University Idaho, where she also received her 200-hour yoga teacher certification. Hayley has worked very closely with fellow dancers and artists to enhance her mover and creator abilities. She enjoys invested collaboration and exploring the crossovers between dance and other art forms. Hayley is active in the local dance scene, performing with groups such as Fem Dance Company and Tiny House Dance Collective. In June 2023 Hayley Stoddard won the adjudicators’ choice award at Movers+Makers (powered by WCDC), granting her a commission with the company.

Rachel Robison

After performing with WCDC for 5 years and serving as an Associate Director from 2013-2021, Rachel now serves as WCDC’s head company teacher and a resident choreographer. Rachel received her Bachelors of Arts in Dance from Brigham Young University and was awarded the Distinguished Graduating Senior award, as well as the Outstanding Female Performer award. As a freshman, she was fortunate to be chosen as a member of The Dancers’ Company and perform in Caroline Prohosky’s film project, Onward Alone, produced by the LDS Motion Picture Studio. Rachel performed with and choreographed for both dancEnsemble and Contemporary Dance Theatre, enjoyed opportunities to travel and perform throughout Texas, New Mexico, Montana and Wyoming, and has worked with dance professionals such as Leah Cox, Carl Flink, Carley Conder, Jake Casey, Camille Spencer, Dina Smirnova, Bebe Miller, and Andrew Madsen. Rachel worked as adjunct faculty at BYU teaching beginning and intermediate level contemporary technique classes. Rachel currently fosters a love for dance in the students of SMASH Dance Academy and has set numerous works on students of all ages, including a revamped version of the studio’s Nutcracker production.