Liberal Studies students at Cal Poly, SLO, CA.  They are learning the importance of bringing Dance to the K-12 classroom!

Liberal Studies students at Cal Poly, SLO, CA. They are learning the importance of bringing Dance to the K-12 classroom!


Ashley A. Friend: Teaching & Education


Friend received her BFA in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, 2001.  She graduated with her MFA in Dance and Technology from The Ohio State University with a minor in Film and Video, 2005.  2010-2015 she taught modern dance technique, theatrical dance, and choreography classes at LaGuardia Community College/CUNY in Queens.   Friend has guest taught at Kenyon College, Wesleyan University, and The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Connecticut.  She was a Guest Assistant Professor in Performing Arts Education at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA from 2013-15.  Friend was a Guest Artist, full-time Assistant Professor, at The College at Brockport/SUNY from 2016-17.

She earned a certification for Pilates reformer and mat classes from Infinite Dynamics in San Luis Obispo, 2001.  Friend taught Pilates classes in Columbus, Ohio (2002-2005).  She continues to teach group mat classes and individual reformer instructions, plus Barré classes in NYC and San Luis Obispo, CA. She is CPR Certified.


She studies with ballet mistress Janet Panetta in NYC (2012-current).  She has also studied ballet with Kitty Daniels in Seattle, plus Gilbert and Sydna Reed (retired from Ballet Russe) in California.  Plus, numerous national and international workshops with contemporary choreographers including: K.J. Holmes, Karen Barnard, Tere O’Connor, RoseAnne Spradlin, Keith Hennessy, Neil Greenburg, Dean Moss, Yvonne Meier, Ishmael Huston Jones, Jonathon Burrows, Irene Dowd, Miguel Gutierrez, and John Jasperse. 

Class & Workshop Description:


I am fascinated by physical choices, subconscious movements, and purposefully limited motion.  These three concepts have different modes of physicality and in my research of what I call “the scary body” I have explored how they interact and inform one body. 

In class we study how physical compromises caused by emotional, psychological, and repetitive habits can develop the most spellbinding and interesting personalized movement vocabulary.  We will question: How do we begin with one set of circumstances and modify our environment to suit our needs?  Or how do we change our needs to suit our environment? 

We will use movement improvisation, writing, speaking, music, props, video, and observation to explore and honor your personalized and individual movement.  I believe that principles of limitation and study of physical habits can be utilized as an expansion and proclamation of individuality with an excelled byproduct of personal revelry. 

This class is an adult class; open to professional dancers and anyone in the community who is interested in observing and embracing their movement vocabulary and individual choreographic voice.