BAXco Share

Friday, February 28 @ 8pm

BAXco, BAX’s youth dance company comprised of 7 teen dancers, will showcase their repertory works in a shared evening of performance. BAXco’s 2013-2014 works are by guest artists: Monstah Black, Sara Procopio and Penelope McCourty, prominent working professionals in the field of dance. The night will also feature guest works by the visiting Paul Taylor Teen Ensemble. The evening will include an opening movement installation with all the showcase’s performers, directed by Donna Costello and Gina Kohler, BAXco’s Co-Directors.


Score developed by Donna Costello & Gina Kohler

Performance by BAXco and the Paul Taylor Youth Ensemble

Music by Pandora App and Michael Wall




Choreography by Penelope McCourty

Performance by Julianne Carino, Justine Farhi, Odessa Jacobson, Sophie Walker, Leah Woodbridge and Eleanor Rothwell

Music by Café at the Gates of Salvation



Choreography by Paul Taylor

Performance by Evelyn Gallagher, Aviya Hernstadt, Sofia Kezevadze, Tali Laurence, Cecilia Montanaro, Sezlyn Petersen, Caroline Quon, Nina Svirsky

Music by Johann Sebastian Bach

Costumes Adapted from design by John Rawlings




Choreography by Monstah Black

Performance by Julianne Carino, Justine Farhi, Odessa Jacobson, Isabel Mascuch, Leah Woodbridge, Eleanor Rothwell

Music by Rise Em by Bandshell



Choreography by Paul Taylor

Performance by Evelyn Gallagher, Aviya Hernstadt, Sofia Kezevadze, Tali Laurence, Cecilia Montanaro, Sezlyn Petersen, Caroline Quon, Nina Svirsky

Music by Francis Poulenc

Costumes Adapted from design by Gene Moore



Choreography by Sara Procopio

Performance by Julianne Carino, Justine Farhi, Odessa Jacobson, Isabel Mascuch, Sophie Walker, Leah Woodbridge, Eleanor Rothwell

Music : Mir by Murcof


BAXco YOUTH DANCE COMPANY is Co-Directed by Donna Costello and Gina Kohler. BAxco performs work by vibrant choreographers who are active in the dance world. Dancers are invited to join a company of sophisticated performing artists. These young dancers are exposed to many styles of modern dance through workshops, classes, and performances, and enjoy a multi-dimensional experience of the NYC dance scene. The company’s 3-hour weekly rehearsal process combines technical training, learning BAXco repertory, and engaging in highly collaborative processes with guest choreographers. Company members are ambassadors for BAX programs who perform at a professional level on stages throughout NYC and beyond including: Kumble Theater (Brooklyn, NY), WOW Café (New York, NY) and Dance and Co. (Harrisonburg, VA). The company also enjoys a more in-depth exploration of the administrative work of a dance company by supporting the fundraising, marketing and promotion of their work.

SARA PROCOPIO, BAXco Guest Choreographer, is a founding member and former Artistic Associate of Shen Wei Dance Arts. From 2000-2012 her work with Shen Wei included originating roles in 10 works while performing and teaching at renowned venues and festivals throughout North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Australia and Asia. Currently, Sara performs as a guest artist with Shen Wei Dance Arts and also with choreographer and media artist Jonah Bokaer. She has been a member of the faculty at the American Dance Festival faculty since 2008 and has served as adjunct faculty at The University of the Arts since 2011. As an independent teaching artist, Sara has taught at Hollins University, the National High School Dance Festival, Dance New Amsterdam, Peridance and internationally at the Korea International Dance Festival in Seoul and the Paolo Grassi School of Milan. She has also created choreographic work for young artists at Greenville Fine Arts Center and The University of the Arts. In addition to working as a free-lance arts administrator, she was a 2012-13 Arts Management Fellow through a program of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the Kennedy Center in conjunction with the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Professional Development Program. Sara earned both her undergraduate and master’s degrees from Hollins University.

MONSTAH BLACK, BAXco Guest Choreographer, is a multidisciplinary performing artist a.k.a Reginald Ellis Crump. He studied choreography/performance at Virginia Commonwealth University and holds an M.F.A. in New Media Art and Performance from Long Island University. He has choreographed for nightclubs, art galleries, black box theaters, warehouses and has toured internationally with his work as well as with The Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, Maida Withers Dance Construction, Court Dance Theater of Philadelphia, Muse Dance Theater of New York City, Grisha Coleman’s Echo::System and Nicholas Leichter Dance of New York City. He has worked collaboratively with Superfront Architects Gallery in Brooklyn creating a show/installation entitled Suspended Gardens. He’s currently a Fellow at Bric Media Arts in Brooklyn, NY. He is a member of the artist collective HOWDOYOUSAYYAMINAFRICAN as well as a member of The House Of Bando. He’s performed internationally from Art Basil, Miami to the New Media Performance Festival in Moscow. Most recently he was a visiting guest artist in residence at Tulane University in New Orleans where he created a new work entitled “Sand Castles of The Golden Clutch and The Secrets of Sugar (A Truncated Glimpse into the Evolution of Fierceness.

PENELOPE MCCOURTY, BAXco Guest Choreographer, is a movement-based arts educator and performing artist living in Brooklyn, NY. She has worked with several locally and nationally known performance companies and community arts organizations. As a performer and teacher she was a member of Marlies Yearby’s Movin’ Spirits Dance Theater (1995-1999), Liz Lerman Dance Exchange (1999-2002), and Reggie Wilson/Fist and Heel Performance Group (2002-2006.) As director and choreographer, her work has been presented at St. Mark’s Church, Joyce Soho, Chicago’s Links Hall, Towson University and San Francisco State University. She has assisted, directed, choreographed:The Oedipus Plays-The Shakespeare Theatre Company (DC); Countdown-Off World Theatre (NY); Love (and other related) Songs-BAX/Brooklyn Arts Exchange (NY). As an educator, Penelope has created and facilitated dance and theater curriculums in numerous schools, senior centers and universities within the New York City area and beyond for the past 15 years. From 2004-2009, she was the Education Director at BAX/Brooklyn Arts Exchange and has served on its board. She was also the Performance Director of Elders Share the Arts creating/directing Continuum Dance Collective-a cross-generational performance and teaching collaborative from 2001-2003. Penelope currently is the middle and upper school dance teacher at The Berkeley Carroll School in Park Slope and teaches residencies and professional development workshops through New Victory Theater and Park Avenue Armory’s Artist Corps.

DONNA COSTELLO, BAXco Co-Director, is a project-based dance artist immersed in process rich work that blurry the lines of dance, theater, performance and the conventions that surround these art forms. Ms Costello has built rich relationships dancing and creating for a multitude of artists including: Vicky Shick, jill sigman / thinkdance, Shannon Hummel/Cora Dance (founding member), Carrie Ahern, Jimena Paz and Vagabond Inventions. Additional projects that have shaped her as an artist include works by Mollie O’Brien, Stephan Koplowitz, Juliette Mapp, Naomi Goldberg Haas, Pele Bauch, Kelly Bartnik, Barbara Mahler, the human company and collaborating with composer Anne Hege. She received a 2013 BAX Passing It On Award from Barbara Mahler who received a BAX Art and Artist Award in Education. Donna has studied Klein Techniquetm with Barbara for over a decade. Her artistry, practice and passion for dance are forever deepening with the constant exchange so has as a performer, creator and educator in the field. In 2010, she taught and performed throughout Germany with the program Dancing to Connect for Aviva Geismar’s Drastic Action alongside Battery Dance Company. She has taught as a guest artist for Dance New Amsterdam, the Liz Gerring Company during their 09-10 Season and acted as rehearsal assistant for Rebecca Davis Projects and Pele Bauch Performance. Her own work has been presented in New York by Movement Research at Judson Church, Dance Conversations at the flea theater, Green Space, Wow Café, Dixon Place, DanceNow/NYC, Brooklyn Arts Exchange, SWEAT dance series and at Performatica in Mexico. She received a BAX Space Grant in 2011. As a teaching artist, she teaches in the NYC Public Schools for Lincoln Center Education, The Park Avenue Armory and Brooklyn Arts Exchange. At BAX she is the Director of Youthworks and Dance Performance Workshop Level 1. She Co-Directs BAXco, the youth dance company, and is BAX’s Education Consultant and Professional Development Specialist.

GINA KOHLER, BAXco Co-Director, is a Brooklyn based performance artist and teacher. She holds a BFA in Dance from Kent State University (2001) and an MFA in Dance, from Hollins University/American Dance Festival (2009). Gina is currently on faculty at BAX and teaches the Young Women’s Project, Modern III and as is a Co-Director for the Brooklyn Arts Exchange Youth Dance Company, BAXco. Kohler teaches Hatha Yoga throughout New York City and completed her Teaching Certification through the White Lotus Foundation. In addition, she works for MoveThisWorld as a Senior Peace Mover in the New York City public school system. Kohler is thrilled to be working alongside Wideman/Davis Dance as a creative advisor and grant writer, where together, they received a MAP Fund Grant (2013). Kohler has taught as a guest artist at University of Michigan, Dance New Amsterdam, Kent State University, Holy Cross, Salem State College, Frostburg State University, Duke University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and TanzTag Coop (Austria). Gina has organized many shows during her career and has worked as the Thesis Coordinator for the Hollins University/ADF MFA program (2012) and as an Assistant to the Director for the Hollins University/ADF MFA program. As a dancer, Gina has had the pleasure of working with the following many choreographers throughout NYC including: Kelly Bartnik, Thomas DeFrantz/SLIPPAGE, David Dorfman (Underground) and Apprentice, GK1 Productions, Lyndsey Karr, Dahlia Nayar, Jennifer Nugent, Shen Wei Dance Arts to name a few. Kohler continues to present her work internationally and throughout New York City. Kohler’s current project dream [factories] has been performed 23 times to date in the United States and Austria. dream [factories] is in development both a live art event and a book in the making. Gina is thrilled to announce that an excerpt of her book dream [factories] published in the Society of Dance History Scholars Publication 2012,Visual Culture and Performing Arts – an Academic Discipline.

THE PAUL TAYLOR TEEN ENSEMBLE, directed by Raegan Wood, offers teenagers an opportunity to learn more about Mr. Taylor’s work through the performance of excerpts of his diverse repertory. By audition only, the Ensemble seeks to expand the student’s experience of Mr. Taylor”s movement style, while developing his/her technical prowess. The Ensemble commitment is for one year and includes technique classes as well as rehearsals. The Ensemble performs within the tri-state area at K-12 public and private schools as well as at larger NYC performance venues such as Symphony Space, Peridance Capezio Center, and SUNY Purchase.

RAEGAN WOOD, Director of Paul Taylor Teen Ensemble, grew up in Berkeley, California where she trained in modern dance with her parents David and Marni Wood, former members of the Martha Graham Dance Company. For seven years, she was a dancer with the Paul Taylor Dance Company. She has also performed with, among many, Dave Parsons, Chris Gillis, and her sister’s company, Ellis Wood Dance. She holds a B.F.A. in Dance from Montclair State University and an Ed. M. in Dance from Temple University. For over twenty-five years, Ms. Wood has been directing programs and teaching dance in the tri-state area and nationally in private studios, K-12 public and private schools, preparatory and community centers, as well as at arts education institutions such as City Center, New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and Peridance Capezio Center. In higher education she has taught at numerous colleges and universities including Barnard, Juilliard, and Rutgers, where she was on faculty for fifteen years. Ms. Wood is currently the Director of the Taylor School, as well as the Taylor Teen Ensemble, and as an experienced curriculum designer, she is in the process of designing K-12 curriculum for the Paul Taylor Outreach Program.

BAXco 2013-2014 Members

Isabel Mascuch is an 8th grader at MS51. Isabel has been dancing since she was six years old and has studied all different styles of dance including modern, ballet, jazz, hip hop and African. She has taken modern I, II, III and IV at BAX, and is now currently in Teen Ballet. At MS 51 she is a dance major and there she is in the advanced dance class and in the intermediate company. She hopes to be a professional dancer or do anything that is fun and energetic. She enjoys writing, baking, choreographing, and spending time with family and friends. This is her first year in BAXCO.

Justine Farhi has been dancing at BAX for 6 years. She is a freshman at Brooklyn High School of the Arts and is majoring in dance. She trains in classical ballet, African, modern and contemporary. She attended the Mark Morris summer dance camp in 2012 and aspires to attend the Bates Dance Festival this coming summer. This is her second year in BAXco and her first year in BAX’s Dance Performance Workshop Level III. Her passion is to pursue dance professionally in a traveling ballet-based modern dance company.

Julianne Carino is a pre-professional dancer and creative artist. She attends Urban Academy as a sophomore. Julianne has trained in classical ballet, modern, African, Improvisation and contemporary. She has been infatuated with free movement and contact improvisation. She attended Bates Dance Festival in 2013 and plans on attending next summer. Julianne has learned from artists that include Bill T. Jones, Kendra Porteir, Doug Varone, Shen Wei and Nejla Yatkin. Her passion and desire is to pursue dance in a professional setting. This is Julianne’s 3rd year in BAXco.

Sophie Walker has been dancing since the 3rd Grade and choreographing since 5th Grade. She is now at Sophomore at E.R. Murrow High School and is in Dance Performance Workshop Level III at BAX. Sophie is currently studying astronomy and costume design. She likes to write, cook Italian food, listen to strand music and have odd dreams. She is a feminist and argues strongly for equality and rights. Sophie loves to express herself through dance and throw herself into movement as much as possible. This is her first year in BAXco.

Leah Woodbridge has been dancing at BAX for 11 years. Her background is primarily in modern dance, but she also has training in ballet and African. She has received additional training as a member of her middle school’s dance company and at the Mark Morris Dance Center. She currently attends Stuyvesant High School in the 10th grade and she is always sure to put her homework aside in order to dance more. This is her first year in BAXco and her second year in BAX’s Dance Performance Workshop Level III. . In addition to dance, she is also interested in education policy, quantum mechanics and environmental science.

Eleanor Rothwell is 15 years old and goes to E.R. Murrow High School. In middle school, she danced for three years in the MS 51 dance program and company. Before that she studied ballet at the School of American Ballet for 2 years and during that time she performed with the school in the Nutcracker, Circus Polka and Sleeping Beauty. She loved it and has continued to dance. She has two cats and is interested in environmental sciences. This is her first year in BAXco.

Odessa Jacobson is a Junior at the Beacon School in New York. She had been taking dance at BAX for 14 years. She has also taken Ballet, Contemporary, African and more at other locations including Peridance and the Bates Summer Dance Festival. This is her 3rd year in BAXco and 3rd year in BAX’s Dance Performance Workshop Level III. Odessa has grown up around and with dance all her life. She has performed in the works of many, such as: Pamela Pietro, Kelly Bartnik, Penelope McCourty and Monstah Black. Odessa is very interested in East Asian Culture and desire to make dance a major part of her career in addition to writing.

Paul Taylor Teen Ensemble Dancers

Evelyn Gallagher, a freshman at Communications High School (New Jersey), trained in ballet and modern for eight years at Spring Lake School of Dance. She is currently in her second year at the Asbury Park Technical Academy of Dance, taking drop-in classes at Broadway Dance Center, and modern with the Paul Taylor Teen Ensemble.

Aviya Hernstadt has danced works by Ellen Robbins, Mark Morris, Rebecca Kelly, and Paul Taylor. She is a senior in high school at the Packer Collegiate Institute.

Sofia Kezevadze has been dancing from an early age. She received most of her training from LaGuardia Arts High School, with summer intensives at Ailey and Paul Taylor. She is currently attending Hunter College and performing with choreographer Janice Rosario.

Tali Laurence has been dancing seriously for 9 years and counting. She has trained at The School at Steps and Alvin Ailey with support of her school, The Professional Children’s School.

Cecelia Montanaro is currently a junior dance major at LaGuardia High School. She had previously studied at Alvin Ailey and the Tisch School.

Sezlyn Petersen has been dancing for over 10 years. She has trained with Mark Morris Dance Center and Pure Elements, and is currently a senior at Frank Sinatra School of The Arts.

Caroline Quon has been dancing for ten years and has performed in pieces with the Westchester Ballet Company, Shaun Parry, and Naganuma Dance. Caroline is currently a student at Fordham University.

Nina Svirsky moved to New York City eight years ago and began her dance training at Abrons Arts Center. She has been learning and developing her Taylor technique at the Taylor School for three years and has performed across the city with the Taylor Teen Ensemble.

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