Updated: May 25
I’m excited to share that this June, VLA DANCE will present two new solos with Jay Breen
and Theophile Victoria at Goundbeat an event celebrating Juneteenth at the Boston Hatch Memorial Shell produced by AfroDesiaCity. The evening will be filled with performances, dancing, food, and games. Reserve your free tickets HERE.
Meet the performers!
Jay Breen - Soloist
I am Jay Breen (she/her), 24 years old, from the New England region. I have danced my whole life, exploring all styles from Ballet to Ballroom, Contemporary to Krump. At age 16, I was given scholarship money to Pace University and went on to be accepted to The Ailey Certificate Program, Point Park University, and Marymount Manhattan College where I would attend for one year. After my freshman year, I moved back home, due to a severe injury and began teaching and choreographing throughout my home state. I have choreographed two music videos for a Boston based artist and performed in several local shows and showcases. In 2021-2022, I attended the inaugural year of CLI Conservatory in Western Massachusetts where I had the opportunity to connect and work with many respected industry choreographers such as, Brian Nicholson, Robert Green, Marty Kudelka, Chris Scott, Mike Tyus, Joy Brown, Noelle Marsh, Dana Wilson, Megan Lawson, Jillian Meyers, Kathryn McCormick, and many more. I have been given opportunities to assist a handful of these choreographers, both at the conservatory and elsewhere. I’ve gained significant experience working on both, the camera and stage. Recently, I was in the opera, “Omar” which ran for a weekend in Boston. Moving forward, my goal is to continue to broaden and diversify my work experience, between camera and stage.
Theophile Victoria - Soloist
Theo is a dancer with VLA DANCE. He has performed all over Massachusetts and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Dance from Salem State University. Outside of performing, Theo is an avid gamer, and enjoys playing chess.
Aliza Franz - Rehearsal Director
Aliza Franz (they/she) is a Boston-based dancer, collaborator, and arts manager. She graduated from Skidmore College, where she earned a double major in Dance: Performance and Choreography and Psychology, with a minor in Gender Studies. While in school, Aliza had the pleasure of working with artists such as Sidra Bell, Erika Pujic, and Stephen Petronio. Since they began freelancing in Boston, Aliza has had the pleasure of dancing with various artists and organizations including Boston Lyric Opera, Ilya Vidrin, and Lorraine Chapman the Company. Aliza is currently in residence with Jessi Stegall, a part of the next installment of Rachel Linsky’s Zachor, and dancing with Chavi Bansal. Aliza is also a company member and the rehearsal director of VLA DANCE. In addition to doing freelance work, Aliza is a passionate dance teacher, working with students ranging in age from 5-18 in a variety of styles. Outside of dance, Aliza is the Creative Director of Zamana Art, a company that provides team building and professional development through the lens of art and creativity. Aliza continues to explore their identity through movement and advocate for diversity in creative spaces.
Victoria Awkward - Choreographer
Recently awarded 1 of 15 Artists of Color making an impact in Boston by WBUR, Victoria is the Director of VLA DANCE. She aims to celebrate the talents and artistries of Boston through contemporary dance. Originally from Massachusetts Victoria L. Awkward trained at Impulse Dance Center by LuAnn Pagella and worked with Boston-based artists such as Karen Krolak. She graduated from Goucher College with honors in Dance, Visual Art and Education. Victoria is also a freelance artist, who most recently choreographed Bluebeard’s Castle with Boston Lyric Opera in addition to Romeo and Juliet with Boston Lyric Opera & Commonwealth Shakespeare Company. She has performed with Shura Baryshnikov, Levi Marsman, Ashani Dances, Attn: Dance, The Davis Sisters, Heather Stewart, Jenna Pollack and Ruckus Dance. An educator, she has been a guest teacher at Urbanity Dance, Salem State University, the Head Dance Coach at Middlesex School in Concord and the Visual Arts Coordinator at the West End House. She continually deepens her teaching practices through her work as a mentee with Cambridge-based Midday Movement Series.
We hope to see you there!
Victoria L Awkward
VLA DANCE Director