In addition to his ongoing community teaching, Jason has recently been Visiting Assistant Professor and Adjunct Assistant Professor in the University of Iowa Department of Dance. There he taught ballet classes at a wide range of levels, from Beginning Ballet for non-majors to Majors Ballet 1, 2, and 3. He earned his MFA in Dance from the University of Iowa in 2008, and serves as Artistic Director of the UI Youth Ballet and Community Dance School. Jason teaches concert dance technique with a pedagogical approach rooted in anatomy, sensory experience, imagination, and rhythm. His research focuses on the mechanics of movement and injury prevention and these emphases are central to the courses he designs, which have included ballet and modern for adult learners, floor barre, yoga, experiential anatomy, and most recently ballet pedagogy.
In the ten years since being promoted to its Artistic Director, Jason has directed 17 concerts and choreographed 27 pieces for the University of Iowa Youth Ballet and Community Dance School. There, in addition to teaching upper-level ballet for teens and beginning ballet for adults, he mentors UIYB teachers.
Just as importantly, Jason seeks out opportunities to connect with mentors of his own. Since shifting his focus from performing to teaching, he has sought out the teachers of his teachers. Each of the last four years Jason has studied with Finis Jhung, exploring the moving body's dynamic mechanics in his teachers workshops in New York and recently through Zoom. Philip Beamish was another mentor, whose technique Jason studied during graduate school, and with whom Jason trained in floor barre and ballet techniques at the Northwest Dance Intensive teachers workshops. Willy Burmann permitted Jason to observe his teaching regularly at Steps on Broadway. Jason has also studied curriculum and teaching methods under Marcia Dale Weary and Darla Hoover at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet teachers workshop, and completed the 40-hour pedagogy seminar on the Vaganova syllabus with John White, former Soloist and Ballet Master of Ballet Nacional de Cuba.
Jason was an Instructor in the Department of Kinesiology, Allied Health and Human Services at the University of Northern Iowa 2010-2015, where he taught modern, ballet, floor barre, choreography and dance history. Jason supervised over 100 student choreography projects at UNI for presentation both locally and at academic conferences. In Cedar Falls he directed seven fully-produced concerts and co-directed five concerts. As the Director of UNI Young People's Dance Theatre from 2011 to 2014 he led three informal children’s concerts. In addition to venues throughout Iowa, Jason has presented his choreography in regional festivals in Minnesota and Utah.
Iowa City Press-Citizen article:
The University of Iowa, 2005-2008
M.F.A., Dance, conferred 2008
(Meiji University, Graduate School of Letters), Tokyo, Japan, 2004–2005
Graduate Study Abroad
The University of Iowa, 1998-2004
M.A.T., Secondary Foreign Language Education, transferred
B.A., Asian Language and Literature: Japanese, conferred 2003
2020 Ongoing classes with Finis Jhung through Zoom, June-Present
2019 Finis Jhung Teacher Workshop, New York, August
2019 Teaching observations with Willy Burmann, New York, August
2018 Alexander Technique workshop for teachers, Robyn Avalon, Iowa City, November
2018 Finis Jhung Teacher Workshop, New York, August
2018 Teaching observation with Willy Burmann, New York, August
2017 Finis Jhung Teacher Workshop, New York, August
2015 Vaganova Syllabus Seminar with John White, author of the acclaimed Teaching Classical Ballet, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, July
2015 Northwest Dance Intensive Teachers Workshop with Philip Beamish, Olympia, Washington, June-July
2014 Northwest Dance Intensive Teachers Workshop with Philip Beamish, Olympia, Washington, July
2011 Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet Teachers Workshop with Marcia Dale Weary and Darla Hoover, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, August
Artistic Director, 2009-PRESENT
Instructor, Summer Intensive, summers 2011-2014, 2016-2017
Classes: Dance Appreciation (classroom) and Modern Dance (studio)
Assistant Instructor, 2006
Adjunct Assistant Professor, 2020
Visiting Assistant Professor, 2019
Adjunct Assistant Professor, 2017-2019
Graduate Teaching Assistant, 2007-2008
Graduate Research Assistant: Dance Marketing, 2006-2007
Assistant Instructor, 2006
Co-creator (with Monica Chavez-Silva) and Instructor, 2012-2013
Six-week summer outreach programs in dance co sponsored by Grinnell College Office of Community Enhancement & Engagement and The University of Iowa Division of Performing Arts
Weekly company classes in modern dance technique
Instructor, 2002-2004, 2006-2007
Graduate Research Assistant, 2005, Tokyo, Japan
Graduate Teaching Assistant, 2003-2004, Iowa City, Iowa
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