Vanessa W. Edwards
Lasley Centre Classes: Jazz, Hip-Hop, Modern
Vanessa W. Edwards returns to Washington, D.C. after many adventures with her active-duty military husband Brigadier General Trenton Edwards; among them, a successful season as choreographer for the 2006 U.S. Air Force expeditionary performance team Tops In Blue world tour; a 2015 U.S.A.F. event, honoring surviving Tuskegee Airmen at Joint Base San Antonio—Randolph, Texas; and training with the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company II and at the Dayton Ballet School in Ohio.
In Washington, D.C., Ms. Edwards was Joy of Motion faculty for nine years, teaching hip-hop and contemporary jazz. She performed for CityDance Ensemble, Tony Powell/Music & Movement, Gesel Mason, Karen Reedy, and Dupont Alley Dance.
As Artistic Director of Jam Crew from 1998 to 2005, Ms. Edwards directed performances in Chicago and New York City—-and in Washington, D.C., at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Art Center’s Theater Lab and Millenium stage, as well as regularly sold-out company concerts. Ms. Edwards’s choreography, often a blend of modern and hip hop, has been performed by CityDance Ensemble; Black Movement at Georgetown; and the Georgetown University Dance Company, where she enjoyed five consecutive seasons as guest artist. The Washington Post has called her modern work “suspenseful,” her hip-hop “crowd-pleasing”---an explosion of “exuberant syncopation.” She has coached dancers for Head of State, starring Chris Rock; and led master classes in the area, including at James Madison University and the Kirov Academy.
Before studying dance and earning a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of New Hampshire, she was an internationally competitive gymnast and the 1984 New England triple jump champion, experiences she brings to her athletic choreography. She joins the Lasley Centre faculty as a Jazz/Hip Hop instructor and choreographer.