This summer, join us at COCA for our Ballet & Contemporary Dance Intensive, June 5–16. Participants (Ages 14–19) will receive advanced arts training from renowned guest artists. Meet our incredible lineup of professional teaching artists below!
Founder of Waheed Works, winner of the 2019 Princess Grace Award in Choreography, & 2021 Guggenheim Fellow
2021 Guggenheim Fellow Tommie-Waheed Evans is a queer black dance maker, born and raised in Los Angeles, California, amidst racial divide, gang warfare, and earthquakes. His work explores blackness, spirituality, queerness, and liberation. He began his formal training with Karen McDonald before receiving a fellowship at the Ailey School, and an M.F.A. in choreography from Jacksonville University. He has toured and performed nationally and internationally as a company member of Lula Washington Dance Theater, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, and Philadanco. Since 2004, he has created more than 50 original dance works that range widely in scope, length, tone, and subject matter.
Waheedworks, his Philadelphia-based dance company, is the primary vehicle for his creative research. The company’s mission is to create a radically collaborative body of work that speaks to the human condition. His work brings together urban street dance styles and contemporary dance vocabulary through bold and raw movements propelled by gospel music and polyrhythmic sounds. He has also been commissioned to create works for BalletX, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, PHILADANCO!, Verb Ballets, Ballet Memphis, The University of the Arts, Boston Conservatory at Berklee, Lula Washington Dance Theatre, Louisville Ballet, among others. He has received accolades and honors including 2020 Center of Ballet and Arts resident fellow, 2019 Princess Grace Honoraria Award in Choreography, New Music Project Grant, Howard Gilman Foundation Fellowship, Joffrey Ballet Winning Works 2019, and Ballet Memphis New American Dance Residency 2019.
Former member of the Houston Ballet & Assistant Professor of Dance at Florida State University College of Fine Arts
Caleb Mitchell was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, where he started his serious early ballet training at the age of 16 under Rose Marie Floyd. After graduating cum laude in 1998 with a B.F.A. in dance from the University of Arizona, Caleb joined the Houston Ballet under Ben Stevenson, O.B.E.-emeritus, and later Stanton Welch, Artistic Director.
During his tenure with Houston Ballet (1998–2007), Caleb performed featured roles in works by George Balanchine, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, Sir Frederick Ashton, Ben Stevenson, O.B.E., Glen Tetley, William Forsythe, Paul Taylor, Christopher Bruce, Ronald Hynd, Lila York, Natalie Weir, Julia Adams, Trey McIntyre, Stanton Welch, James Kudelka, and David Parsons. In 2007, Caleb was awarded a Chancellor’s Distinguished Fellowship (Helen Russell Scholar) at the University of California-Irvine. In June 2009, Caleb received an M.F.A. in dance and soon after became an Assistant Professor of Dance at Belhaven University in Jackson, Mississippi, where he received tenure (2009–2016).
Caleb’s choreographic, teaching, and guest panel engagements include the following institutions: Co-choreographed with late legendary choreographer and teacher Dr. Donald Mckayle on a creation for University of California, Ad Deum Dance Company, Irvine’s Etude Dance Ensemble entitled Sanctuary (2009), METdance, Ballet 5:8, The Link School of the Arts, Vivid Ballet , Ballet Hartford, Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet, Cirque du Soliel: Elvis, Brigham Young Univeristy Department of Dance, Texas Ballet Theater Professional Division, University of California Irvine’s Etude Ensemble (Dr. Donald McKayle–Artistic Director), Charlotte Ballet Summer Intensive, The Masterworks Festival, Belhaven University, University of Utah, University of Oklahoma, University of Oklahoma Summer Dance Intensive, East Carolina University School of Theater and Dance, Santa Monica College, Houston Ballet 2, Southern Methodist University, and others.
In the fall semester of 2016, he joined Santa Monica College Dance Department (Santa Monica, California) as a full-time Associate Professor of Dance. Currently, since August 2018, Caleb serves as a full-time Assistant Professor of Dance at Florida State University School of Dance.
Levi Philip Marsman
Former Member of Ailey II, Guest Teacher, & Freelance Choreographer
Levi Philip Marsman was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts. He began his training at the Boston Arts Academy, OrigiNation Cultural Arts Center, and Jeanette Neill Dance Studio as a scholarship recipient in their Boston Youth Moves Program. After graduating from the Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Levi was awarded a place in the Scholarship Program at The Ailey School. He later enrolled in the Ailey/Fordham B.F.A. Program, which lead to an invitation to join Ailey II by former director Sylvia Waters before graduation. Levi’s performance credits include the Radio City Christmas Spectacular (New York), Movements Dance Company (Jamaica), OrigiNation (Boston), Lula Washington Dance Theatre (Los Angeles), Reed Dance (Pittsburgh), and PHILADANCO! (Philadelphia).
Levi is currently an instructor at Urbanity Dance and in the Ailey Extension program at the Ailey School. He has been Artist in Residence at the Boston Arts Academy and the Boston Conservatory at Berklee, and Teacher in Residence for Urbanity Dance. The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum commissioned him to create a new work entitled Colorful in conjunction with the opening of their exhibit, Boston’s Apollo, in 2020, and he created some kind of peace to close out Richmond Ballet’s 2021 season. He was choreographer for Boston Lyric Opera’s 2021 production of Cavalleria Rusticana, Urbanity Dance premiered a trio of his in Boston as part of their 10th anniversary season, and most recently, Dallas Black Dance Theatre: Encore! commissioned a second work this spring. He has also created works for institutions such as Dallas Black Dance Theatre: Encore!, the Walnut Hill School for the Arts, Douglas Anderson School of the Arts, LaVilla School for the Arts, Sharron Miller Academy for the Performing Arts, Alexander W. Dreyfoos School for the Arts, Marygrove College, Renaissance High School, Boston Youth Moves, Dean College, Endicott College, Eastern Michigan University, Wheaton College, Georgetown University’s Black Movements Dance Theatre, the Joffrey School, Boston Conservatory at Berklee, The Ailey School, Reed Dance, the Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach, Ballet Eclectica at COCA, OrigiNation, and MOVE(NYC).
Levi’s awards include Contemporary Dance Silver Medalist of the 4th Seoul International Dance Competition, 2007 Young Professionals Awardee—Martha Hill Dance Fund, Best Performance at the 10th Annual Oakland Dance Festival in Michigan, and first recipient of the 2016 Ballet Inc. Emerging Choreographer Award. He was asked to perform an original solo in the 2018 Boston Contemporary Dance Festival and was one of two guest choreographers to create a new work for Urbanity Dance’s Urbanity NeXt Project in 2017.
He returns this year to create new works for The Ailey School and the Boston Conservatory at Berklee. He also has been commissioned to create a new ballet in Ohio for Verb Ballets in the spring 2023. He is excited to be movement choreographer for his second project with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company as they present Much Ado About Nothing for “Shakespeare in the Common” after being nominated for Outstanding Choreography by the Boston Theater Critics Association for his work on the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s 2021 production of The Tempest.
About the Intensive
This intensive is for dancers looking to refine their technique and artistry, while having fun and working toward their artistic goals. Classes include ballet technique, pointe, men’s, jazz, and contemporary dance. Each summer, the Ballet and Contemporary Intensive is headlined by world-renowned guest teaching artists and stars of the dance world. The dancers work on a variety of repertoire and variations during the two-week process as well as improvisation techniques. Participating dancers must have extensive training, with a minimum of two years of pointe work. This intensive culminates with a free, open performance for family and friends on Friday, June 16.
Contact Antonio Douthit-Boyd, Artistic Director of Dance, at firstname.lastname@example.org to submit a video audition by May 1.
Sliding Scale Tuition Program
COCA offers a sliding scale tuition program for qualifying students. Learn more