Why movement and dance?
Movement and dance is a great form of exercise for children and adults with or without disabilities. Regardless of your abilities or what shape you are in, you will love moving and dancing!
But it is much more. It opens up a new world for people who are differently-abled ~~ from improving flexibility, muscle tone and body coordination/motor skills to creating a sense of accomplishment, improving confidence, making new friends and expressing yourself in a safe and relaxed environment.
With experienced instruction and a gentle, patient approach, people of all ages will enjoy participating.
Kristin Brown—Dance Instructor
Kristin began her study of dance at the age of three. She had the opportunity to study at dance schools in California and Utah where she learned a variety of dance styles including; ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, and contemporary. She furthered her training in college and received her BA in Dance from Brigham Young University (BYU). While at BYU she was able to perform on the touring company, Contemporary Dance Theatre, and travel with them to India and Colorado.
Kristin had the opportunity to work with renowned choreographers Donald McKayle, Diavolo dancers Jenn and Omar Olivas, Jennifer Backhaus, and others. Kristin received further training at summer intensives including San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, Paul Taylor, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet. She most recently danced on the Utah-based company, SALT Contemporary Dance under the direction of Michelle Nielsen. It was there she was able to work with dancers from North West Dance Project and broaden her artistic abilities.
Currently she is a member of Avocado Dance Theatre and is entering her fourth season. Kristin has a passion for teaching dance and loves to choreograph. She is happy to be an instructor with Inclusive Movement and Dance.
María Tomillo—Dance Instructor
María graduated from the University of Valladolid with a B.S. in Art History and a Magna Cum Laude in Master’s in Dance of the XV and XVI Centuries. Her dancing career stared early at the Dance School of Valladolid, where she was a direct disciple of Mariemma. Mariemma was one of the most famous and prestigious Spanish Dance dancers of the 20th Century (www.escueladanzavalladolid.es).
María is from Valladolid, Spain and has recently moved permanently to the Temecula Valley area. While in Spain, she was the founder, creative director, choreographer and teacher of DyD, “Dance and Diversity”, a group of 25 dancers of all ages focused on the development an artistic growth of students with diversity abilities from pre-school to young adults (www.companiadyd.blosgpot.com.es). María started with the idea to open dance classes to persons with special needs and the project evolved and became a non-profit Dance Company, now celebrating 18 years of dance. The dance company performs regularly in the city of Valladolid and has also performed in Madrid and as far away as Portugal.
María was on the dance faculty of the Dance School of Valladolid, where in addition to the DyD program, she taught ballet, body conditioning, ancient dance and all four types of Spanish Dance: Bolera School, Folklore, Flamenco and Stylize Style.
Always curious to know about other dance projects for people with diversity abilities, several years ago María met those who began the Inclusive Movement and Dance project during her summer visits to the United States and joined the company when she relocated.
Amanda Ankele—Dance Assistant
Amanda is a special needs dancer who loves to perform contemporary improvisational dance and ballet. She currently studies with Kristin Brown of Avocado Dance Theater. She has performed in many venues including dance recitals, churches, retirement/care facilities, at danceXchange in Temecula, and with a nationally known concert singer.
She is a member of Inclusive Movement and Dance and has performed in "A Story of Gifts", "An Evening In Art”, “The Carnival of the Animals" and "A Very Special Nutcracker". Amanda has been featured in articles in the Press enterprise describing the various challenges she faces and how dance has made a positive impact in her life and she was part of a Temecula Valley Museum exhibit about special needs families in Temecula Valley.
Renee Ferguson—Dance Assistant/Volunteer
Renee is a native of Southern California and started dancing at an early age. She and her two brothers were well known throughout Southern California as “The 3 Belongies”—singing, dancing and playing the piano as well as being featured on local television. Renee was also involved in local Community Theater productions playing roles such as Brigitta in “The Sound of Music”. As a teenager, she was a competitive ice skater and later spent four years touring the United States and Canada as a professional ice skater with the Ice Capades. Following Ice Capades, her skating career continued in Barry Ashton’s “American Circus on Ice” in Atami, Japan.
After hanging up her skates, Renee returned to dance and was the director/choreographer of the Psalm 9:14 Dancers, a Christian worship dance team, dancing locally and on Christian television. Renee was an original member of Avocado Dance Theatre, a modern dance company in Temecula, performing for four seasons. She continues to take dance classes. Her passion for the last seven years has been Crossfit. Renee has been married for 24 years and lives in Temecula with her husband Mickey, teenage son Andrew, and dog Got Rod. She loves being a part of Inclusive Movement and Dance.
Tessa Jansen—Tech Helper
Tessa is a speech and language therapist who enjoys helping others. When not performing her day job, she can be found taking pictures or video, building websites, and managing Facebook pages.
Barbara Ankele—Business Manager
Barbara is a founder of Inclusive Movement and Dance and has been its business manager since inception. She also serves as President of Creative Arts Alliance of Southern California, a 501(c)(3) non profit corporation supporting the arts in the special needs community. She has been teaching piano for over 25 years to typical and special needs children and adults. She is an accompanist and was the children’s choir director at her church. Barbara has extensive business experience and holds a Master of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Finance from San Diego State University. She is actively involved in the community, serving on various committees for the City of Murrieta.