Stories are among our most potent tools. We need to unearth old stories that live in a place and begin to create new ones. We are story makers, not just storytellers. All stories are connected, new ones woven from the threads of the old. – Robin Wall Kimmerer, paraphrased
Join ARENA DANCES for our weekly Studio Stories Podcast, where each week we reminisce on Twin Cities dance history with a new special guest. This week, we sat down with Toni Pierce-Sands to learn about her journey.
Prior to co-founding TU Dance, Minnesota native Toni Pierce-Sands performed with Minnesota Dance Theatre, Tanz Forum in Germany, Rick Odums in Paris, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, where she was a featured soloist in such signature pieces as Revelations, Cry and Rainbow Round My Shoulder. Her command of the Horton Technique has led to teaching posts throughout the United States and Europe.
Toni directs programming and teaches classes at TU Dance Center in Saint Paul. She was a full-time core faculty member at the University of Minnesota for twenty years and also served as Director of University Dance Theatre. Toni has been featured in COSMOPOLITAN Germany and GQ publications, the American Express Alvin Ailey commercial, and the Lester Horton Technique instructional DVD series. She has written columns for Dance Studio Life magazine on various pedagogical approaches for modern dance. Toni was awarded a 2004 McKnight Artist Fellowship in Dance, named the Sage Awards’ 2011 Outstanding Dance Educator, and a panelist for the 2018 Dance Miami Choreographers’ Program. She currently serves as a member of the University of Minnesota’s Northrop Advisory Board.
Visit http://www.arena-dances.org to listen, or check it out wherever you get your podcasts!