Annual Summer Intensive

June 9-21, 2014

Schedule (pdf)
Brochure (pdf)

HAD’s Annual Summer Intensive workshop is a special opportunity for intermediate and advanced students who desire to dramatically advance their technical skills and improve performance confidence. Classes include ballet, pointe, jazz, musical theatre, contemporary, conditioning, and Horton.

Concentrated study with Master level guest faculty bring to the classroom the knowledge, motivation, and expectations of the professional world of dance and inspire our students to new heights of accomplishment summer after summer. Our Summer Intensive benefits those who dream to dance professionally, and those who love to dance for recreation.

2014 Intensive Faculty


Eddy Ocampo, Artistic Director of LEVELdance, has danced with some of Chicago's premiere dance companies such as the Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago and River North Chicago Dance Company. He has served as faculty member as well as School Director of the Giordano Dance Center, the Director of Giordano II Company and the Director of the Giordano Scholarship program. He danced as principal company member with Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago from 1994-2000. As a master teacher, Eddy has taught in Europe, Mexico, Canada, Turkey, the Russian Republic and throughout the U.S. As a choreographer, Mr. Ocampo's choreography can be seen on such companies as Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, Houston Metropolitan Dance Company, Odyssey Dance Theatre (Salt Lake City, UT), Kannon Dance (St. Petersburg, Russia), Lisa Clark Dancers (San Francisco, CA), Thodos Dance Chicago, Eisenhower Dance Ensemble, Inaside Chicago Dance and many regional ballet companies. Eddy received the Dance Chicago 2004 Outstanding Choreography Award as well as the Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation Choreographer of the Year Award for Dance Chicago in 2005 and 2007. Mr. Ocampo is the first in the history of the Cliff Dwellers Foundation to ever receive this honor twice. He is also the winner of the 2007 Leo’s International Choreography Competition for his choreography, “gekkoh”. Eddy has been featured in Dance Teacher Magazine as well as named one of the best jazz dance teachers in the country by Dance Spirit Magazine. In 2005 Mr. Ocampo was honored as Filipino American of the Year by the Filipino Association of America. Eddy is so excited to be coming to Houston again and is serving his 12th year on faculty at HAD's Summer Intensive!

Steve Brule began his training with Stanley Hall of the Royal Ballet and Ballet de Paris.  He was a soloist with the Frankfurt Ballet and the Houston Ballet where he toured extensively throughout the U.S., Europe, and China. In Houston, under the direction of Ben Stevenson, Mr. Brule eventually became the Assistant Principal of the Houston Ballet Academy. He considers teaching his “first love and true calling” and considers himself fortunate indeed to have learned from one of the greats – Stevenson himself. For 18 of his 20 years with HBA he directed summer choreographic workshops where choreographers such as Trey McIntyre and Dominic Walsh got their start.  He recently retired from The University of Oklahoma's School of dance where he served as Associate Professor for 10 years from 2003 to 2013. During his tenure at OU he performed character roles for Oklahoma Festival Ballet (OU's resident company), Texas Ballet Theater and Tulsa Ballet.  He wishes to thank his Director and good friend at OU, Mary Margaret Holt for encouraging him to choreograph.  He is currently living in Houston, Texas where he is freelancing.

Joel Hall, a native of Chicago’s Cabrini Green neighborhood, established and co-founded the Chicago City Theatre Company in 1974.  This unique performing arts organization includes the Chicago City Theatre Company, the Joel Hall Dancers, and a training facility, the Joel Hall Dancers & Center.  Hall is the Artistic Director and choreographer for his dance company and the Chief Dance Instructor for the training studio. He has now mentored dancers who direct Joel Hall Dancers II and Joel Hall Dancers Youth Company.  During the past 40 years, Hall has achieved an international reputation for his Dance Company and acclaims as a choreographer whose work; in his own unique dance style based in jazz, expresses a rich vocabulary embracing both the classical and modern dance idioms. Mr. Hall also served as one of Mayor Harold Washington’s international ambassadors for the arts. “Jazz dance at it’s best” says Dance Magazine.

Mr. Hall has studied both in Chicago at the Chicago Dance Center with Nana Shineflug , Kieth Allison, Warren Rude, Al Gossan, Harry Laird, Ed Parish, Denise Jefferson, Sarah Singleton, Tom Baker. In New York with Thelma Hill, Pepsi Bethel, Lynn Simonson, Nat Horn, Robert Christopher, Michelle Murray, June Lewis and Finis Jung. Since the 70’s has created more than seventy ballets for his own company and is noted in two major books on the contemporary dance arts; Black Dance by Edward Thorpe, dance critic for The London Standard and The Black Tradition in American Dance by Richard Long. Susan and Thomas D. Kuczmarski note him in the book Apples are Square: Thinking Differently About Leadership. Recently published history in Black Theater Is Black Life by Harvey Young and Queen Meccasia Zabriskie.  He has been the recipient of numerous awards including the Northeastern Illinois University Alumnus of the Year, the King/Chavez/Parks Visiting Scholar Award from Western Michigan University, guest professor at Northwestern University Theater / Dance Department, the Katherine Dunham Award / several Choreographic and two Awards of Merit from the Black Theater Alliance.

From 2001 to present, Mr. Hall has been honored by the Metropolitan YMCA of Chicago and received their Black and Hispanic Achiever of the Year Award for his contributions to the community.  The Chicago Dance and Music Alliance awarded him their prestigious Lifetime Achievement for Service to the Field award.  Mr. Hall received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Jazz Dance World Congress. His choreography for In the Shadow of Nina Simone was honored with the African American Arts Alliance Black Excellence Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance and he was the recipient of the New Business of the Year Award, from the Edgewater Chamber of Congress.  His recent work, Civil Rights Movements, was collaborated with Civil Rights Opera.  He is profiled in The History Makers and was recently commissioned to create a new work along with composer percussionist Charles Heath, to showcase at the Auditorium Theater.

Courtney D. Jones began her professional career in Miami, FL with the Freddick Bratcher and Company Contemporary Dance Theatre while attending New World School of the Arts. Named one of Dance Magazine's 25 to Watch in 2012, she is a professional dancer, guest teacher and actress is a Presidential Scholar in the Arts for Choreography. Ms. Jones is a proud graduate of SUNY Purchase with a BFA in Dance Performance and a minor in Psychology, graduating with honors. Following graduation Ms. Jones continued to work with the Kevin Wynn Collection and joined Jennifer Muller/The Works where she taught and toured internationally for four seasons. With a growing interest in theatre she joined the cast of Show Boat in 2008 accomplishing a long-standing goal to perform at Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall and went on to join Broadway's First National Tour of WICKED in 2009.
In Houston, Ms. Jones enjoyed four lovely seasons performing with Hope Stone Dance Company from 2010-2014 and continues to be seen in productions at Stages Repertory Theatre; Auntie Mame, Panto Pinocchio, In the Next Room or the Vibrator Play, Failure: A Love Story, Houston Grand Opera; Show Boat (swing), Die Fledermaus, The Passenger (Movement Director) and Theare Under The Stars; Urban Cowboy the Musical and A Chorus Line (Lois/swing). She is also a highly sought after consultant teaching company class for Hope Stone Dance, Houston Metropolitan Dance Company, SUCHU Dance, Rice University Rice Dance Theatre and Urban Souls Dance Company where she also served as a guest choreographer for their 2012 season. Ms. Jones is an Adjunct Faculty member at the School of Theatre and Dance at the University of Houston teaching modern dance, she is a consultant in modern dance, musical theatre dance, composition and repertory at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and is the Assistant Director of Hope Stone Dance II (h.s.d. II) while guest teaching at numerous universities, workshops and intensives and developing work as a freelance choreographer under her own CDJ Project. 

Frances Manzo, a native Houstonian, has worked on some of the most well known films, TV shows, commercials, tours and music videos of her generation. She is more than a triple threat; she is a dancer, teacher, actress, writer and singer. She has toured with such acts as Britney Spears, Destiny’s Child, Miley Cyrus, Solange Knowles, and The Fresh Beat Band. She also starred alongside Harry Shum, of “Glee,” in Jon Chu’s short film, The LXD: Matched. Frances has danced on “Glee,” the MTV VMA’s, “Mobbed,” “Victorious,” “Hannah Montana,” “iCarly,” Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, and many more. She can be spotted dancing for Beyonce in Beyonce: Life is But a Dream and “Run the World (Girls).” Not only can she dance, but Frances can also write. She co-wrote a song featured on “CSI: NY” in 2013. She also wrote the film, Redlight Kate, which is currently in development. She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Biology, and she is currently working on her Master of Science in Criminal Justice.

Carol Pakri began her dance training at the David Taylor Dance Theatre in Littleton, Colorado, where she studied with Lynelle Mossholder, Milton Myers and James Clouser. She went on to receive a BFA in Ballet Performance at the University of Oklahoma where she studied under Mary Margaret Holt, Donn Edwards, Allan Kinzie, Denise Vale and Dennis Marshall. In 2000, she graduated with honors. While dancing with Oklahoma Festival Ballet she danced the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, the White Cat in The Sleeping Beauty, a soloist role in George Balanchine’s Serenade and toured to Nice & Cannes, France.
Upon graduation, Carol returned to Colorado, where she danced with Colorado Ballet and David Taylor Dance Theatre. She performed in Swan Lake, Balanchine’s Stars and Stripes, Donald McKayle’s Jam Nation and Martin Fredmann’s Cinderella & The Nutcracker.
Carol has been teaching since 1995. During that time, she held the positions of Director for the Youth Ballet Company at Spotlight Performing Arts Academy and School Principal & Principal Teacher at the Academy of Colorado Ballet South. In 2006, she joined the staff at The Royal Ballet School in London, England, where she taught for 7 years. During her time there, she graduated from The Royal Ballet School Professional Dancers Teachers Course with Distinction. In August 2014, Carol relocated to Houston where she is currently on staff at the Houston Ballet Academy.

DesireeRobbinsDesiree RobbinsDesiree has a passion for teaching and devotes much of her time training the dancers that you see in front of the camera. Her real expertise is taking dancers and fine-tuning their technique, style, and movement to create a more refined, professional product. Desiree has well over 20 years of experience in the field. Many new and exciting things have been happening this year.  Desiree is beyond thrilled to be one of the many amazing faculty members on the hottest new convention iHollywood Dance Convention where she is Artistic Director of "The Company" at iHollywood Dance Convention. This amazing new company has been called "The newest and most motivating program to hit the dance scene..." Last fall she also became a faculty member on ASH Dance Convention. In 2011, Desiree traveled to more than 40 cities. She taught at the Dance Teachers Summit in New York last summer, Doug & Friends in Los Angeles, and most recently traveled to work in Costa Rica and Austria. She works with individuals and groups to help improve their training and performance. Most recently Desiree has been hosting a weekly dance podcast entitled, Nick and Desiree’s Infinite Dance Cast, which is available for downloading on iTunes.  The show features interviews with top industry professionals and has quickly become popular worldwide. 

Derrick YenfordDerrick Yanford began his formal training in a local studio of his hometown Southwick, Massachusetts where he studied ballet, jazz, tap, and acrobatics with his teacher Brenda Barna. After years of training Derrick went on to win many major national dance titles and competitions including Mr. Dance of Connecticut, America's Male Dancer of the Year, and most honorably Mr. Dance of America 1995. After furthering his dance education at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, Derrick began his professional career and has had the pleasure of performing with Ballet Hispanico of New York, The Joffrey Concert Dancers, Northern Connecticut Ballet, Walt Disney World, and Radio City Music Hall's Christmas Spectacular. Additional performance credits include the First National Tour of   Footloose, the European Tours of Evita and West Side Story as well as the World Premiere of the Opera Le Cid, starring Placido Domingo. Derrick has also gained recognition as a choreographer and has had his work commissioned by ABC Television for the Boscov's Thanksgiving Day Parade, Rittenhouse Row Arts Festival and the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Millennium Kick-Off to name a few. While currently residing in Philadelphia, Derrick freelances as a choreographer and serves on faculty for the Rock School of the Pennsylvania Ballet. Derrick has been a member of Koresh for two seasons.  He continues dancing professionally and teaching.  He was selected as the choreographer for the American Dance Awards Titles Competition in Summer 2002.

MariaAyyatMaria Mendoza Ayyat enjoys sharing movement, fitness and fun with her clients in a variety of disciplines. Along with 11 years combined experience in fitness instruction and dance performance, Maria is a Certified GYROTONIC® Pre-Trainer and a Certified Instructor in GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS ® methodologies. She is also a comprehensively certified instructor through Peak Pilates®. Maria has danced professionally for Candente, Planet Funk, and the Houston Rockets Power Dancers. She is a Pilates Alumni Ambassador for Lululemon Athletica and a member of the Pilates Method Alliance. Maria served as Guardian Ad Litem for Child Advocates and worked with dance outreach programs such as MECA and the Children's Prison Arts Project. She graduated in 1997 from the University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in journalism with a public relations emphasis, along with minor studies in theater, dance, Spanish and English. Maria resides in Houston, Texas with her husband, Ash. When she is not taking flight in an aerial class; spiraling on GYROTONIC® equipment; or scooping in a Pilates workout, Maria enjoys reading fiction, taking yoga classes and spending time with family and friends.