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Terrell Dance Faculty

2023-2024

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Christen Reyes

Founder & Director

Horton (Modern 2-4), Dance Composition, Senior Capstone, and Performance and Ensemble

Christen Ashley is a BFA recipient from Howard University, and a proud legacy of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She has had the opportunity to work with Camille A. Brown, Hope Boykin, Ray Mercer, Kim Bears-Bailey, and a host of many others. She has also had the privilege to perform works choreographed by Pearl Primus and Ronald K. Brown. Christen has performed with Alfre Woodard at the Lincoln Memorial for Constitution Day, and was grateful for the opportunity to perform at two Inaugural Celebration’s for the re-election of President Barack Obama. Christen has also performed with Anthony Hamilton on TV1's A Christmas Special. Mrs. Reyes served as a dancer with Dallas Black Dance Theatre: Encore! for 3 seasons, simultaneously serving as the rehearsal assistant for 2 of those seasons. After the completion of dancing for 3 seasons, Christen then served in the position of Artistic Assistant for DBDT: Encore! Mrs. Reyes was a principal dancer with the Dallas Opera, and experienced national and international tours with DBDT: Encore! Christen was a featured choreographer for Deeply Rooted Dance Theatre’s Emerging Choreographer’s program during the summer of 2017. She served as the Director of the Junior Performing Ensemble within the Dallas Black Dance Academy from 2017-2020, and is currently the Founder and Director of Dance at I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA. She is a certified Horton Technique teacher, and enjoys her time teaching and coaching this next generation of dancers!

Claudia Orcasitas

Assistant Director

Ballet 1-4, Principles of Dance, and Contemporary Modern

Claudia P Orcasitas is a Peruvian dance artist, educator and psychologist. She is deeply invested in practicing ballet, modern dance and contemporary dance. Claudia was a long-time company member of the San Marcos Ballet, directed by Vera Stastny (Peru) and of the Contemporary Dance /Fort Worth Company directed by Kerry Kreiman (Texas). She received a dual bachelor’s degree in education and psychology from Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos (Peru) and recently completed her Master of Fine Arts in dance at Texas Woman’s University where she earned the Dr. Linda Caldwell Excellence in Writing award, the Experiential Student Scholars Award and the Mary Cartwright Brown Merrick & Hellen Baldwin Bauer Smith Scholarship for her outstanding academic performance and research practice. In 2016, she participated as an artist in residency in the First Residencia de Investigación y Creación en Danza (RED) with the Ministry of Culture of Peru and Danzon Nuclear, conducting a movement research project titled Abject Bodies. Utilizing both western and non-western forms, her most recent creative work explores body, space and cultural identity. As a dancer and educator with over 12 years of teaching experience, she is currently working as adjunct professor at University of Texas at Arlington and University of North Texas, where she provides dance instruction and continues honing her dance research skills.

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Alexa Hubenak

Hip Hop Instructor

For over 27 years dance has been a main character in the life of Alexa Hubenak. A Fort Worth, Texas native, Alexa grew up in the competitive dance world training in all styles of the art. She travelled all over the country with Tremaine Dance Conventions and Competitions as apart of the apprentice program for 3 years assisting and working with some of the biggest names in the dance industry including Joe Tremaine, Desiree Robbins, Doug Caldwell, Laurie Johnson and many more. Growing up, she spent most of her summers in Los Angeles, California training in all styles of dance at Edge PAC, Millennium Dance Complex and PAC. Amongst these accolades, she has also participated and learned from numerous intensives, conventions and master classes all over the country including SoulEscape, Soul2Sole Tapestry, DancerPalooza, University of Arizona Jazz Dance Festival and more. She has now dedicated her career to thriving and growing as a teacher to over 200 weekly students, an award winning choreographer of over 100 works for both dance studios and local drill teams as well as a nationally recognized costume designer and creator. Her students have gone on to prestigious colleges and obtained careers in dance of their own. In addition to dancing and choreographing, Alexa is also heavily involved in the world of pageantry. She judges at State, National and International levels for the National American Miss system where she was recently named the 2023 Georgia E. Stewart Judge of the Year. Dance and pageantry are her passions and she thrives off of sharing her love and knowledge with the next generation!

Melinda Cantu

Jazz Instructor

Melinda Cantu was born and raised in Fort Worth, Texas where she trained primarily at Dance Concept. Following high school Melinda continued her training at the University of Central Oklahoma. After receiving her B.F.A in Dance Melinda moved to Los Angeles in 2010, where she signed with Clear Talent Agency to pursue her professional career. She has worked with artists such as Beyoncé, Afro Jack, The Cataracs, Shwayze, Twista, Victoria Justice and Trace Adkins to name a few. She went on a 2 year World Wide Tour dancing for Sky Blu, from the Grammy Nominated Duo LMFAO. Melinda has worked with many celebrities including, David Arquette, Wilmer Valderrama, George Lopez, Metta World Peace, Jay Leno, was also a featured dancer in Tru TV’s Full Throttle Saloon and has worked on the hit television show, Dance Moms. She is an adjudicator for various dance competitions and is thrilled to be able to spread her dance knowledge and passion by teaching.  In 2018 she moved back to her home state to continue her career in teaching and choreography. She has taught at multiple high schools in the Fort Worth area and continues to teach and train dancers at Dance Concept. Melinda continues to thrive in the professional dance industry and hopes that her love and passion for dance will inspire others to pursue their dreams as well.

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