Amelia Renee Byrd Amelia Renee Byrd (Memphis, TN) earned an MFA in Dance from University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2014; she is Dance Educator and Chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department at Penn-Griffin School for the Arts in High Point, NC. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Theatre and Dance and a Bachelor of Professional Studies with a K-12 Dance Education licensure from the University of Memphis (2005 and 2007).

Isabelle Collazo is a Chicago-based dance artist and educator with a passion for dance and youth development. She holds an MFA in Choreography and K-12 Dance Licensure from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (2019), where she presented her MFA thesis “Finding Carmen: Dancing the In-Between.”

Emily Crofford is an artist and educator interested in exploring the intimate connections dance offers both performers and viewers. She was selected as one of Dance Project’s Artist in Residence for Fall 2018, and her choreography has been featured at Cleveland Dance Showcases, American College Dance Association conferences, and Tobacco Roads Dance Productions’ In Concert ’19.

Sarah Dove is a PhD Candidate and Graduate Teaching Associate in the Department of Comparative Studies, and a Graduate Administrative Associate for the Center for the Study of Religion at the Ohio State University.

Ali Duffy is a President’s Excellence in Teaching Associate Professor of Dance and Honors and the Graduate Dance Director at Texas Tech University.

Melanie Greene Melanie Greene received her MFA in Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2013. She is a 2017 Bessie Award Recipient for Outstanding Performance with Skeleton Architecture. A dance artist, writer, and organizer, Melanie is no stranger to swirling on the edge of impossible, swimming in the sea of the minority.

Billy James Hawkains, III (Detroit, MI), was first introduced to dance from the pews of his hometown Baptist church in Detroit, MI. Despite his lack of formal coaching, the fourteen-year-old, soon-to-be dancer began taking classes under Anthony Smith at Lewis Cass Technical High School where ballet was his first genre of study. Learning at fourteen years of age what others learned at four didn’t come easy, but Billy held tight to the budding passion inside of him.

Mary-Evelyn Kirkland (née Hunt) Mary-Evelyn Kirkland (née Hunt) holds a BA in Mass Communication and a Dance Minor from Georgia College. She received her MFA in Dance from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro in 2018. There, she was the recipient of the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award for the College of Visual and Performing Arts.

Nina Kossler (née Moshman) earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance with a concentration in Choreography at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2019. Nina is a choreographer, scholar, and educator.

Raina Lucas Raina Lucas (née Cephas) is a dance educator, choreographer, and creative research artist based in Washington, D.C. She received her BA in dance and psychology from Goucher College and an MFA in Dance with a concentration in choreography from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro (2015). .

Dan (Melissa) Mao Dan (Melissa) Mao is a PhD candidate and teaching assistant in choreography at Northeast Normal University. She holds a BFA from Northeast Normal University and an MFA from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro (2015).

Mandi Moore Amanda (Mandi) Moore is a choreographer, performer, educator, and collaborator. She received her Masters of Fine Arts in Dance from UNCG in 2018.

Stephany Rayburn is an artist and educator whose work celebrates collaborative processes as well as the intersection between theater and dance. Stephany earned her BA in Theatre from Wake Forest University, focusing on directing and costuming.

Jess Shell Jess Shell is a somatic based choreographer, dancer, and teacher residing in Hillsborough, North Carolina. She holds a BA in Dance from Sarah Lawrence College, and an MFA in Dance from UNCG.

Alyssa Stover (née Haney) holds an MA in Dance Theories and Practices from UNCG (2015), where she was a Graduate Teaching Assistant and co-President of the Association of Graduate Students in Dance.

Mandi Taylor received her MFA in Dance from UNCG in 2021. Her MFA thesis work, titled “We interrupt this program,” addressed interruptions in everyday life and their impact on human behavior.

Justin Tornow Justin Tornow earned an MFA in Choreography at UNC-Greensboro in 2010 and is currently a doctoral fellow in Dance at Temple University. As a movement artist, educator, and researcher, Justin’s artistic interests are collaborative and interdisciplinary experiments, conducted with a core group of partners in visual art, sound design, filmmaking, and lighting design.

Gabrielle Tull is an Assistant Professor of Dance and Coordinator for dance education at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. She received a MFA in Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2020.

Ava LaVonne Vinesett began a professional dance career as one of the founding members of the Chuck Davis African-American Dance Ensemble.  Vinesett attended UNC-G as a Patricia Roberts Harris fellow receiving her MFA in Dance (John Gamble advisor) in 1998.

Alexandra Joye Warren Alexandra Joye Warren is Assistant Professor of Performing Arts at Elon University and Founding Artistic Director of JOYEMOVEMENT. Launched in 2014, JOYEMOVEMENT is a contemporary dance company that has performed regionally and toured nationally at colleges, universities, festivals and conferences, including Opening Night of American Dance Festival in 2017 and at Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello in collaboration with activist Bree Newsome.

Courtney White Courtney White (Richmond, VA) works as an adjunct faculty member at Meredith College in Raleigh, NC; she is the lead instructor and choreographer for the Carolina Preserve Dance Company and is on the faculty at The Ballet School of Chapel Hill, NC.

Brian Winn is a dancer, choreographer, teacher, and scholar who received his MFA in Choreography from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. While in graduate school at UNCG, he investigated gender and sexuality in his choreography.

Arlynn Zachary Arlynn Zachary earned her MFA in Dance from UNCG in 2019 and she holds a BA in choreography from Goucher College.

Lingyuan (Maggie) Zhao Lingyuan (Maggie) Zhao is the Assistant Artistic Director and Rehearsal director at Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers, a professional dance company located in Philadelphia.

Distinguished Alumni

Christal Brown is the Founder of INSPIRIT, Project: BECOMING, the creator of the Liquid Strength training module for dance and the Chair of Dance at Middlebury College. Brown obtained her BFA in Dance with a minor in Business from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and her MFA in New Media Art and Performance from Long Island University.

Over the span of her career, Jan Van Dyke (1941-2015), was nationally recognized as a dancer, choreographer, and teacher, as well as a leader in the dance communities she was part of, most notably Washington, DC and Greensboro, NC. She also taught and performed throughout the United States and in various European countries, including Italy and Portugal. After receiving an M.A.

Ann Law Ann Law is an improvisational dancer, dance educator and arts activist. She is Co-Artistic Director of Contemporary Performing Arts of Chattanooga (CoPAC) and Founder of Barking Legs Theater in Chattanooga, Tennessee. For the past 24 years, through CoPAC at Barking Legs Theater, she has provided a supportive space to encourage both emerging and established artists, to grow thoughtful audiences, and to cultivate strong community art activism.

Doug Risner Dr. Doug Risner is Distinguished Faculty Fellow and Professor of Dance at Wayne State University in midtown Detroit’s cultural district, where he is Director of Graduate Studies and Program Director of the Master of Arts in Theatre & Dance Teaching Artistry, the only program of its kind in the nation. Distinguished Professor Risner received his BFA in Performance and Choreography, MFA in Dance from UNCG’s Department of Dance, and his PhD in Curriculum and Teaching.

Tiffany Rhynard Tiffany Rhynard is an artist, dancer, and filmmaker compelled to make work that examines the consequences of human behavior in an effort to spark a conversation about current social justice issues. Her dance films have screened at festivals nationwide including ScreenDance Miamiwhere she was awarded the First Prize for Invisible Queens(2015) and the jury prize for Black Stains (2018).

Kathleen Kelley Kathleen Kelley is an Associate Professor of Dance and Technology at Montclair State University and the Artistic Director of the intermedia production company Proteo Media + Performance. Her body of creative work pushes against a modernist model of authorship and instead explores collaboration, mutual support structures, and feminist modes of community.

Sue Stinson Sue Stinson, Emeritus Professor of Dance, became a full-time faculty member in the Department of Dance at UNCG in 1979, having been recruited to develop the K-12 licensure program.  She subsequently earned her EdD in Curriculum/Cultural Studies from UNCG in 1984.

For Alumni: Staying in touch

Stay Connected

As a Dance alumnus, you’re an important part of the history and legacy of our School. Your work and experiences are integral to the fabric of the School of Dance, setting the example for the students following in your footsteps today – literally and figuratively – and helping craft a legacy of artistic and technical excellence in the field of dance.

Because you’re important to us, we want to stay connected to you, no matter where you are in your life, your career, or the world. Have important news to share with your community of current and former Dance students? We want to hear about it. We’ve dedicated a section of our online home exclusively to Dance Alumni news, and we’d love to share yours. Keep us up to date with your news here. If you would like to see your bio featured on our website (above), send a 200-word bio and recent headshot to

In need of a transcript? We can help you with that. Contact UNCG Registrar.

Alumni Gifts

You know how rich, diverse and rewarding an education the School of Dance can provide. We’d love for you to consider an alumni gift to the School of Dance, to help our rising young dance talents fulfill their dreams of a life in the arts. We offer convenient, secure, tax-deductible options for one-time donations, Honorary and Memorial gifts, and ongoing scheduled pledges through our online gifting portal, or via the School of Dance office. Your donation or ongoing contribution may also be tax-deductible.

Become a Dance Partner

You might also consider becoming a UNCG Dance Partner. Dance Partners are an important part of our dance community, helping support the mission of producing high-quality performances for our community audiences and creating opportunities for our young dancers. A single membership entitles a Dance Partner to:

    • Four ticket vouchers redeemable for reserved seats in any combination to a selected season of concerts
    • Invitations to special events like pre-show receptions with guest choreographers; post-show receptions with dancers and faculty; open rehearsals to see dancers working in the studio environment
    • Recognition in concert programs

A portion of the proceed of each Dance Partner membership goes directly to the School of Dance, enhancing and enriching student experiences and learning opportunities. Each Dance Partner membership gives a dancer a chance to shine and a choreographer a chance to share. As a Dance alumnus, you know how meaningful your support can be to our School and our discipline.

Dance Partners Passes are available for $40 per 4-ticket pass. To purchase Dance Partner memberships, please contact Triad Stage at 866.579.TIXX (8499) or in-person at the box office for more information.

Stay Engaged

Of course, one of the best ways you can show your support is to attend School of Dance events. You’ve helped demonstrate our commitment to offering a full slate of diverse, engaging works – and most of all, you know the importance of an engaged audience. See our current schedule of upcoming events here and find out more about ticketing here. We’d love to welcome you back, to see the talented and dedicated artists continue the tradition of excellence you’ve helped the School of Dance create.

No matter where your journey has taken you since your time here, you’ll always be a valued member of the UNCG Dance family. Let’s stay connected, and we hope to see you again soon.