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Professional dancers will join students for spring recital

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Pacific Festival Ballet dancer Amanda Coleman will be one of two guest artists at Springfest to be held May 25 at West Linn High School Performing Arts Center.

Moxie Dance Theatre will present Springfest at West Linn High School Performing Arts Center at 2 p.m. May 25. The event features guest artists Amanda Coleman of Portland Festival Ballet and Briley Neugebauer of Polaris Dance Theatre, both instructors at the studio.

Coleman began dancing at Eugene Ballet Academy. She attended Regional Dance America for several years and was awarded scholarships to Joffrey Ballet School, Pacific Northwest Ballet and Ballet Austin Summer Intensive programs. She was the youngest dancer hired by Eugene Ballet and then joined the Ballet Fantastique. In 2011 she moved to Portland to dance with Portland Festival Ballet, training exclusively with John Magnus. While at PFB, she began her ballet teaching career, mentored by Kimberly Smiley. With PFB she has performed roles in multiple productions of classical, contemporary and modern works, including Sugar Plum Fairy in the annual production of “The Nutcracker.” In spring 2013 Coleman choreographed a new contemporary ballet that was performed by PFB trainee dancers.

Neugebauer is originally from Seattle and grew up studying many forms of dance including ballet, modern, jazz, tap and character with mentors like Eva Stone, the producer of “Chop Shop: Bodies of Work.” She earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from University of Arizona, graduating Summa Cum Laude from the School of Dance. While there she performed the Choleric role in George Balanchine’s “Four Temperaments,” Lead Female Daemon in “Carmina Burana” and was part of commissioned works such as Bella Lewitzky’s “Recuerdo” and Martha Graham’s “Panorama.” She toured China in 2011 with ART-IF-ACT Dance Project and upon her return was accepted as an apprentice with Spectrum Dance Theater.

Neugebauer currently dances with Polaris Dance Theatre and her choreography was recently performed at NW Dance Project’s (a)Merging showcase for up and coming choreographers.

MDT’s Artistic Director Gina Candland has choreographed solos for the two dancers. Students of all dance levels will also perform in Springfest.

Tickets are $15 general admission and $12 for seniors. Children under age 2 are admitted free of charge.

A portion of proceeds will be donated to Project Cuddle, a nonprofit organization that provides safe and legal alternatives to baby abandonment, helping pregnant girls and women pave the way to a successful future.

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