2024 Guest Faculty

Meet Our Summer Intensive 2024 Guest Faculty

Stephanie Martinez

Photo: Todd Rosenberg

Chicago-based choreographer Stephanie Martinez moves her audiences along a journey guided by the kinetic momentum of her award-winning works spanning over 12 years.

With original creations for Joffrey Ballet, Ballet Hispanico, Luna Negra Dance Theater, Charlotte Ballet, Sacramento Ballet, Bruce Wood Dance, Nashville Ballet, Tulsa Ballet, Kansas City Ballet, BalletX, and Milwaukee Ballet, among others. 

Theatre credits include Chicago Shakespeare Theatre and the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Martinez’s versatility expands the boundaries of contemporary ballet movement.

Martinez has created over 70 ballets on companies and collegiate programs across the country. Martinez has received numerous grants for her work and is continually recognized for her work as a female artist of color. Dubbed “a chameleon” of choreography by the Chicago Tribune, Martinez’s psychologically revelatory works challenge the viewer’s notion of what’s possible.

Martinez is the founder and artistic director of PARA.MAR Dance Theatre in Chicago, IL established in July 2020.

Kristopher Estes-Brown

Kristopher Estes-Brown is an American choreographer, composer, director, and educator. 

As a choreographer, he is best known for his athletic, expressive movement style, unique musicality, and eye-catching theatricality. 

Estes-Brown has created over 95 original dance works ranging from 8 full-length story ballets to a multitude of contemporary dance pieces. In 2023, he had the unique honor of being selected as a choreographer for the National Choreographers Initiative. His stage works have been performed all across the United States by numerous dance companies with great acclaim. His choreography can also be found in the Sundance Short Film, Crude Oil. Estes-Brown is the current Resident Choreographer for Mareck Dance (formerly Missouri Contemporary Ballet) and an adjudicator for Regional Dance America.

As a composer, Estes-Brown’s music melds a big cinematic sound with dance theater aesthetics. He has been commissioned by notable choreographers and theater producers nationwide to create original scores for new productions, and his musical compositions can be found in many short films and digital media offerings.

Born in a rural town in the Midwest, Estes-Brown moved to Kansas City, Missouri as a child where he studied classical dance and music. Eventually he would go on to dance professionally in many ballet companies across the United States including Milwaukee Ballet, Sacramento Ballet, Oakland Ballet, and Eugene Ballet.

From there, Estes-Brown developed his own choreographic lexicon that is the intersection of movement, music, and story-telling.

Estes-Brown is the Founder and Artistic Director of Concept Zero, a contemporary music and dance company. Concept Zero serves as the ground floor for Estes-Brown’s multimedia productions which blend original music, dance, video, and stagecraft.

Chloé-Grant Abel

Chloé-Grant Abel, a native of Kansas City, honed her dance knowledge through twelve years of intensive training at the Kansas City Ballet School under a full scholarship. Her journey continued with studies at the Ailey School in New York as a Fellowship recipient. She later graduated with a BFA in Dance, Magna Cum Laude, from the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music and Dance. 

Chloé’s professional career includes performances with Quixotic Performance Fusion, the Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey, the Owen/Cox Dance Group, Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company, an apprenticeship with the Kansas City Ballet and most recently, 12-years as an Ensemble member with the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble (CPRDE) as well as the Ensemble Rehearsal Director from 2017-2023.  During her 12-year tenure with CPRDE, Ms. Abel graced the stage in lead roles by  Donald McKayle and Cleo Parker Robinson as well as various works by acclaimed choreographers, including Rennie Harris, Eleo Pomare, Gary Abbott, Garfield Lemonius, Millicent Johnnie, Robert Moses, Milton Myers, and Christopher Huggins.

Chloé is currently the Senior Ensemble Manager for the Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble.

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