Martha Graham Dance Company Director Will Lead Master Classes For SJA students

Susan Kikuchi

Former Martha Graham Dance Company (MGDC) dancer and director Susan Kikuchi will lead Master Classes for St. Johnsbury Academy Advanced Dance students Feb. 4-15.

She has also served as director of the Martha Graham Ensemble and Martha Graham School, and as the dance company's artistic program director, re-staging many Graham works, often in collaboration with Yuriko, for the MGDC, Joffrey Ballet, Boston Conservatory and many other educational institutions.

Since age 7, Kikuchi has been involved in over 20 productions of The King and I as director, performer, dancer and re-creator of the Jerome Robbins choreography, including as soloist and assistant director for the Broadway production with Yul Brynner at the Uris Theater.

She also was choreographer for the Broadway Asia touring production in China and the Far East, and staged the dance in the round at the Royal Albert Hall in London starring Daniel Dae Kim. Most recently, she directed the production starring Lou Diamond Phillips at Kansas City's Starlight Theatre.

Her Broadway credits also include Pacific Overtures, Flower Drum Song, South Pacific, and Jerome Robbins' Broadway.

"The Academy Dance program is committed to providing top-tier professional training to its students," teacher Marianne Handy Hraibi said. "We want our students to be knowledgeably disciplined in dance, and we also want them to be knowledgeable and astute audience members.

Both goals come from exposure to expert training, especially exposure to the nuances that make good dancing great," she added. "It is not enough to provide professional training. Our students need to be exposed to the fine subtleties that distinguish great performing artists."

Guest artists in dance are made possible through the generous donations to the Ned and Sarah Handy Fund for Dance at St. Johnsbury Academy.

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