Chard Gonzalez Executive Artistic Director
Chard is a dance artist, educator and advocate. He received his BFA in Dance Performance at SUNY Purchase and his MA in Dance Studies at Laban Centre London. After a two-decade career as a professional dancer, he founded Chard Gonzalez Dance Theatre in New Orleans where he was inspired by the spontaneity and authenticity of the artist community. Since its founding in 2009, CGDT has performed throughout Louisiana and in Houston, San Francisco and New York City. Upon bringing the company to Chard’s hometown of San Diego, the company continues to create provocative experiences that enrich, enliven, and entertain audiences of all ages.
Harmony Negrin Dancer and Musician (2015-2016)
Harmony studied dance at Saint Mary’s College where she performed with the College Dance Company. Among her many talents, Harmony is a professional harpist, office administrator and financial advisor. She currently works at a successful financial advising company and freelances as a dancer.
Kristina Cobarrubia Dancer (2015)
Kristina is the Director of Flamenco Arana. She comes from a Latin background, including a great-grandfather who came from Spain (hence the Arana name). She studied ballet and jazz, but once she found flamenco, she knew it was what she had been looking for all along, and she’s been devoted to it ever since, almost 30 years. Kristina also has a B.A., Visual Arts (Media) from UCSD (Magna Cum Laude), and an essay of hers, “Madre de Baile,” was published in Mamaphonic: Balancing Motherhood and Other Creative Acts, 2004.
Ana da Costa Dancer (2015)
Ana da Costa was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and received her ballet training from Centro de Danca Rio under the supervision of Angelica Fiorani. At the age of sixteen she started her professional career by joining The Young Ballet of France in Paris, France, touring several cities in Europe and Latin America. Two years later she joined Theatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro as a corps member, and became a first soloist. Ms. da Costa’s repertoire includes leading roles in Giselle, La Bayadere, Swan Lake, Paquita, Don Quixote, Sleeping Beauty, Les Sylphides, The Nutcracker, La Bayadere and Coppelia.
Kyndall Footé Dancer (2015)
Kyndall trained at the California Ballet School from ages 3 to 16. She received Student of the year in 2007-2008. She joined California Ballet Company as an Apprentice in 2009 and became a Corps de Ballet member in 2011. One of the featured roles that she has had the opportunity of dancing was Lead Russian in the Nutcracker. Her favorite ballets from the California Ballet Repertoire are Dracula, Swan Lake, Giselle, Beauty and the Beast and Cinderella.
Elizabeth Kenyon Dancer (2015)
Elizabeth trained at the California Ballet School and Pacific Northwest Ballet School Summer Intensives. She has been a member of California Ballet Company since 2011 where her featured roles were “Dew Drop” in The Nutcracker and “The Bride” in Dracula. Elizabeth received an International Baccalaureate diploma from High School. She is attending Point Loma Nazarene University and currently studying abroad in Paris.
Lindsay Martin Dancer (2015)
Lindsay is a dancer and aerialist. She worked with Royal Caribbean Cruises where she performed in large-scale Broadway-style productions and other genres including: illusion shows, dinner theatre, Argentinean gaucho shows and aerial performances with the use of silks and halo harnesses. Linday is currently a business software training manager and a freelance performer.
Lily Morache Dancer (2015)
Lily trained at California Ballet School and danced in many performances as a Junior Company member including: Leaps & Bounds, All School Concert, ArtWalk Showcase, The Nutcracker, Dracula, Giselle, San Diego Fringe Festival and more. Lily is a student at Patrick Henry High School where she performs with the PHHS Dance Team.
NEW ORLEANS ARTISTS (2008-2014)
Daneeta Loretta Jackson Filmmaker (2008-2011)
Daneeta and her husband Patrick began collaborating with Chard upon their simultaneous arrival in New Orleans in 2008. They worked on several projects using the software program Isadora to create interactive multi-media performances. Daneeta and Patrick co-founded Elektrik Zoo, a creative partnership that produces film, video, photography and writing.
Kesha McKey Dancer/Singer (2008 and 2014)
Kesha McKey is a choreographer, educator and professional performing artist in New Orleans. Kesha is a graduate of NOCCA, has received her Bachelor of Science from Xavier University of Louisiana and her Master of Fine Arts in Dance Performance from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is the founding Artistic Director and Choreographer of KM Dance Project. She is a featured performing artist and rehearsal director for local dance companies such as Lula Elzy Dance Theatre, Kumbuka African Drum and Dance Collective, Chard Gonzalez Dance Theatre, Prophecy Dance Company, Exhibit Dance Collective, and with Ashé Cultural Arts Center.
Tara Brewer Dancer (2008)
Tara studied dance at the University of Louisiana Lafayette and the University of Southern Mississippi. She has performed with and choreographed for various theatre production companies throughout New Orleans including The National World War II Museum. Tara was also an original cast member and dance captain of “Jazz Jazz Jazz” and “Dancing in the Streets,” the signature shows at Jazzland Theme Park. Other credits include the New Orleans Saintsations and featured singer in season one of HBO’s Treme. Tara is the owner/director of The Dance Project in Slidell, Louisiana.
William Bryant Dancer (2008)
William Bryant studied musical theatre at Western Kentucky University. He performed many theatre throughout the Greater New Orleans area including: Southern Rep Theatre, Rivertown Theatres, Le Chat Noir, Westwego Performing Arts Theatre, Le Petit Theatre du Vieux Carre, Summer Lyric Theatre at Tulane University and the NOLA Project. William earned a Master of Science in Health Care Administration and management at University of New Orleans. He is currently a training analyst with Ochsner Health System.
Jason Kirkpatrick Dancer (2008)
Jason studied film, theatre and communications at University of New Orleans. As a professional actor he has performed in many theatres throughout New Orleans. His appearances on television include Treme (2010), Bonnie and Clyde (2013), True Detective (2014) and NCIS: New Orleans (2015). And has made several appearances on the big screen including: The Jack of Spades (2010), The Campaign (2012), 2 Guns (2013), 99 Homes (2014) and Trumbo (2015). Jason has directed many successful shows such as Much Ado About Nothing, The Musical Adventures of Tom Sawyer, West Side Story, Macbeth, Urinetown: The Musical, A Streetcar Named Desire and many others.
Danielle Schieb Dancer (2008)
Danielle Harrell Scheib received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola University. Her versatility as a dancer/singer has led her to perform in shows such as Oklahoma, Guys and Dolls, Carousel, La Cage Aux Folles, and Broadway’s 42nd Street in Stuttgart, Germany. Television credits include MTV’s Made, Rock and Jock, and Germany’s most popular TV show “Wetten Das”. Danielle has performed in Japan at Tokyo DisneySea’s Christmas in New York and Tokyo Disneyland’s Once Upon a Mouse, where she also appeared as Cinderella and Little Bo Peep. She has choreographed and performed in industrials for companies such as Stuart Enterprises and Little Tykes, and has taught at schools in Germany and across the U.S., including NYC’S Broadway Dance Center.
Christopher Forsyth Dancer/Assistant Choreographer (2009-2014)
Christopher Forsyth, native of Houma, LA, has restarted his performance career since becoming an educator. After receiving his BFA in Dance Education from the University of Southern Mississippi, Christopher traveled to New York City in 2002 and co-founded Pyrrhic Awakening, an acting improvisation troupe which also involved dance performances. After about four years of New York life, he traveled back to Louisiana to pursue his career in education. Christopher is currently a math teacher at South Terrebonne High in Bourg, LA and has taught creative movement classes at Stay and See Learning and Development Center in Houma, LA.
Reese Johanson Dancer (2009-2014)
Reese Johanson is a producer, visual and performing artist, writer, fundraiser for the arts, about town socialite and party girl and has been for over 20 years. She graduated from the National Shakespeare Conservatory in New York where she trained in acting, dance and theater production. In New York, she performed Off-Off Broadway in numerous plays, theatrical performances, (dance, puppetry and performance art). She was a founding member and Assistant Artistic Director for the Oronoco Theater Company creating, producing and performing original works of theater. She wrote reams of poetry and performed them at public readings around the city. She starred in several low budget films, hosted a cable TV comedy show and was featured in comedy acts on public cable television stations.
Jarina Carvalho Dancer (2009-2011)
Jarina completed her training in classical ballet on full scholarship at the School of American Ballet in New York City. She joined the Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Dancing Through Barriers Ensemble in 1998 and was promoted to the company of Dance Theatre of Harlem in 2000. While at DTH, Ms. Carvalho performed in The Four Temperaments, Apollo, Serenade, Concerto Barocco, Holberg Suite, South African Suite, “Meditation” from Thais, and Swan Lake. She later performed with New Orleans Ballet Theatre, Michele Brangwen Dance Ensemble, and Chard Gonzalez Dance Theatre. In 2009, she received a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences magna cum laude from University of New Orleans.
Peryn St Raymond Dancer (2010-2014)
Peryn began her dance training at the age of five under the instruction of Jacqueline Fry at New Orleans Dance Academy. During her years at NOCCA she attended several summer dance programs, including Hartford Ballet, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, and The United States Scholar Athlete Games. After graduating from NOCCA, Peryn began pursuing a career in business. She graduated from the University of New Orleans with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and started for an accounting firm. With her business career moving forward, Peryn eventually found new energy and inspiration that has brought her back to the stage.
Mary Carol Chenet Dancer (2010-2013)
MC began dancing with Ida Winter Clarke in Lake Charles, LA and was a member of Ballet Joyeux. While earning her Bachelors Degree in English from California State University of Long Beach, MC fell in love with modern dance and studied the techniques of Limon, Cunningham and Graham. She trained with Rebecca Wright of New York City Ballet and was a member of the Nannette Brodie Dance Theatre. She later studied with the Fort Worth City Ballet under the direction of Paul Mejia, where she was offered an apprenticeship. Since moving to New Orleans, she has performed with New Orleans Dance Collective, Barbara Hailey, Nicole Colbert, Monique Moss, Anne Burr Dance Theatre, Chard Gonzalez Dance Theatre and Eddy Villalta’s D’Project.
Jennifer Plauche Dancer (2010-2011)
Jennifer began her training in Metairie, LA where she studied various styles of dance. After high school, she continued her dance training at The University of Southern Mississippi where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in dance performance and choreography. She was a four-year performer with the Repertory Dance Company and also choreographed two pieces of her own. In addition to training with the Southern Miss faculty, Jennifer has had the privilege to attend classes and intensives with those such as Misnomer Dance Theatre, STREB, and Nikolais Louis Dance Company. She is currently teaching in studios throughout the New Orleans area.
Maritza Mercado-Narcisse Dancer (2010)
Maritza has had the privilege of performing her work on the Jacob’s Pillow Inside/Out stage, the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage and Piccolo Spoleto. She is a Louisiana Division of the Arts Fellow and has studied most recently with Susan Marshall, Doug Varone, Beppie Blankert & Milton Myers. She has been a New Orleans native since 1988 and has worked with a variety or NOLA based dance and theater artists including ArtSpot Productions, Moving Humans and Mondo Bizarro. She is “Mama” to Tyger, and Mateo; wife to J Hammons. Maritza directs her company, the Narcisse|Movement Project and teaches masterclasses at Dancing Grounds.
Shane Courville Musician/Composer (2010-2012)
Shane Courville was born and raised in South Louisiana. He began studying music in the 6th grade at Mire Elementary School. His trumpet became a passion which led him to study music at LSU then Loyola University New Orleans. Shane performed with many orchestras and bands as well as dabbled in composition. Inspired by the rich mystical tradition of Hindu and Buddhist chanting, Shane has developed a style of composition that brings about a contemplative aspect. Shane has taught music to elementary through high school students and has written many works for Chard Gonzalez Dance Theatre in New Orleans, University of Florida, and other ensembles around the South and Chicago.
Eric Thielman Dancer (2011 and 2014)
Eric trained at the Pittsburgh CLO Academy, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, the Virginia School of the Arts and University of the Arts in Philadelphia. Some teachers that have left an imprint on Eric include Maurice Curry, Lorraine Graves, Roni Koresh, Joe Lanteri, Brice Mousset, Milton Myers and Buddy Thompson. Eric performed with the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Gateway Playhouse, Pittsburgh CLO, the Manhattan Movement Arts Center and toured with Susan Stroman’s Tony Award winning Contact throughout the United States and Canada. Eric has also worked with the Joffrey Ballet School inManhattan, PBS, Sony Pictures Entertainment and the International Ballet Competition hosted in New York City.
Madison Alford Dancer (2012-2014)
Madison Alford, a cajun native of Lafayette was trained in classical ballet as a child. As a graduate of NOCCA’s Dance Department, she first discovered her love for modern and improvisational dance in Chard’s classes. After graduating, she spent 14 months doing volunteer work with French organization Heart’s Home in Lviv, Ukraine. There, she danced with a new and forming company under the direction of Olha Petryk with a concentration in Trisha Brown technique and contact improvisation. Now, back in the USA, she is studying Anthropology at University of New Orleans, as well as continuing her work in dance and theatre improvisation.
Amanda Thomas Performer (2009)
Jana Mahoney Performer (2009)
Lauren Elliot Performer (2009)
Katherine Keator Performer (2009-2010)
Dr. Kate Kokontis Dramaturg (2012)
Cory Komasa Performer (2012)
Sunshine Breland Performer (2012)
Sarah David Visual Artist (2012)
Audra Rouse Model (2012)
Jarrell Hamilton Dancer (2012)
Meliah Henry Dancer (2012)
Kabrena Robinson Dancer (2012)
William Byram Dancer (2012)
Nikki Hooker Dancer (2012)
Casey Johnson Dancer (2012)
Katie Labadie Dancer (2012 and 2014)
Lyndsey Nuebel Dancer (2012)
Jessica Orlando Dancer (2012)
Brenna Serigne Dancer (2012)
Stephanie Sommers Dancer (2012)
Andrea Torres Dancer (2012)
Jessica Smith Dancer (2012)
Caroline Korndorffer Dancer (2012)
Destiny White Dancer (2012-2013)
Allison Hellmers Dancer (2013)
Madyson Barbain Dancer (2013)
Airielle Brooks Dancer (2013)
Demi Brown Dancer (2013)
Maci Burt Dancer (2013)
Alexa Cunningham Dancer (2013)
Aubrey Daboval Dancer (2013)
Lily Donegan Dancer (2013)
Caleb Dowden Dancer (2013)
Colette Duplantier Dancer (2013)
Imani Gaudin-County Dancer (2013)
Brooke Gueho Dancer (2013)
Sarah Meunier Dancer (2013)
Michaela Morris Dancer (2013)
Regan Phelps Dancer (2013)
Joy Robert Dancer (2013)
Jourdan Waddell Dancer (2013)
Morgan Ballard Dancer (2014)
Gretchen Erickson Dancer (2014)
Ariel Troxclair Dancer (2014)
Aurora Troxclair Dancer (2014)