Arts Faculty at National Conferences – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Arts Faculty at National Conferences

Professor and Chair of the Dance Department Donna Davenport, Associate Professor of Dance Cadence Whittier, Professor of Dance Cynthia Williams and Assistant Professor of Music Mark Olivieri will present at national conferences this month. 

At the National Dance Education Organization conference in Minnesota, Davenport will perform as a soloist in Dr. Larry Lavender’s presentation, “Command Performance,” which postulates a form of choreography called sociography. Davenport will present a workshop with Mark Olivieri, assistant professor of music, titled “A New Composition Pedagogy: Music for Dance and Dance for Music.” 

On Saturday at the same conference, Whittier presents a workshop titled “Students as Collaborators in the Learning Process.” 

Meanwhile, Williams will travel to North Carolina to present “Applications of Body-Mind Centering Principles to Modern Dance Technique Classes” at the 26th annual Body-Mind Centering Association conference.

Davenport has taught dance at Hobart and William Smith Colleges since 1990. She received her B.A. in psychology and her B.F.A. in dance at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, her M.Ed. and Ed.D. at Temple University, and pursued post-doctoral study in dance science, composition, and technique at the American Dance Festival for three summers. Prior to her tenure at the Colleges she taught modern dance, ballet, and jazz dance technique at Temple University.

Davenport has written for several journals, including Education, Journal of Dance Education (JODE), and Impulse. She has conducted conference workshops on interdisciplinary teaching and on composition at several conferences, and served for five years as book review editor for JODE. She also sat on the JODE editorial board and served on the board of directors of the American College Dance Festival Association. She recently served as the Associate Dean of Faculty in the HWS Provost’s Office.

Joining HWS in 2010, Olivieri teaches courses in music theory, music in American culture, and conducts the Colleges Woodwind Ensemble. Prior to arriving at the Colleges, he served as composer-in-residence in the Department of Dance at The College at Brockport. He has played and composed for luminaries like the Jose Limon, Sean Curran, Doug Varone, and Shapiro and Smith Dance Companies. His ongoing collaborations as both pianist and composer with dance icon Bill Evans have led to numerous performances of new works. Olivieri served as assistant director for the Heidelberg University New Music Festival. Olivieri is artistic director of the Vision of Sound New Music and Dance Festival, assistant director of the Musselman Arts Triathlon, and co-founded the improvisation ensemble Be Here Now. He has received numerous commissions from various performers and ensembles throughout the U.S. and abroad.

Whittier joined the faculty in 2000. She has taught dance to fifth graders in Geneva, N.Y., and Salt Lake City, Utah, and at the college/adult level at the Ballet West Conservatory and the University of Utah. Additionally, she has guest taught at the Interlochen School of the Arts, and the American College Dance Festival American Dance Center in Overland Park, Kansas.

She earned her B.F.A. in Ballet: Teaching and Performance from the University of Utah, as well as her M.F.A. in Ballet: Teaching and Choreography. Whittier also holds a Certification in Laban/Bartenieff Movement Analysis, Integrated Movement Studies. She has written for the Journal of Dance Education and has had papers published in the conference proceedings of the National Dance Education Organization Conference and the Laban International Conference. She currently serves as the director of the Fisher Center for the Study of Women and Men at HWS.

Williams earned her B.F.A. in dance and her B.S. in psychology from the University of Utah and her M.F.A. in dance from Connecticut College. She has been a member of the HWS faculty since 1986 and maintains an active practice as choreographer and lighting designer. She routinely teaches courses in ballet and modern dance technique, choreography, dance history and improvisation and has published numerous dance reviews in World Dance Reviews. Williams has also written a number of book reviews.

The photo above features Professor Donna Davenport at a faculty dance concert.