School of Music, Theatre
and Dance

Varner Hall, Room 207
371 Varner Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4485
(location map)
Academic Office: (248) 370-2030
Box Office: (248) 370-3013
Fax: (248) 370-2041

Artists in Residence and Guests

Catherine Coury - Guest Artist
Catherine CouryCathrine Coury is a native of Detroit and graduate of the  University of Michigan . Since 2010, Catherine’s dance career included extensive international touring, as well as the creation and performance of new works with New York City’s  Shen Wei Dance  Arts Shannon Gillen Gallim Dance and  LoudHoundMovement . In 2015 Catherine relocated to Tel Aviv, Israel where she became a certified  Gaga Teacher,  practitioner of the  Ilan Lev Method, and a co-founder of MARCAT DANCE alongside Spanish choreographer Mario Bermudez Gil. A s a dance administrator, Catherine played an integral role in the development of The Playground NYC and Gallim Dance.

Mario Bermudez Gil - Guest Artist
Mario Bermudez Mario Bermudez Gil is a native of Jaen, Spain and discovered dance at the age of 20.  He studied from 2008-2010 at the  Centro Andaluz de Danzain Sevilla, and relocated to New York City in 2010 where he danced with  Jennifer Muller/The Works and Andrea Miller’s  Gallim Dance. From 2012-2016, Mario lived in Tel Aviv, Israel dancing with  Batsheva Dance Company and performing work by Ohad Naharin, Sharon Eyal, Hofesh Shechter, and Roy Assaf. His own choreography has been presented in New York, Spain, Japan, Korea, Denmark, and Tel Aviv, and has been featured in the New York Times.   In 2016 Mario received   2nd prize in Choreography from the Copenhagen International Choreography Competition and a  Production Award from the National Comapany of Wales for his work "BUSCANDO".  Mario now creates work under the umbrella name of  MARCAT DANCE alongside collaborator Catherine Coury.

Eisenhower Dance - Company in Residence

Eisenhower Dance is a nationally touring professional dance company directed by OU Professor Emerita of Dance Laurie Eisenhower. OU students have the unique opportunity to mentor with the professional dancers of Eisenhower Dance and are given numerous opportunities to perform with the Company. The OU Repertory Dance Company often collaborates with Eisenhower Dance on large-scale choreographic productions. Senior dancers have the opportunity to audition for apprenticeships with the Company, a unique and valuable professional training opportunity. Many OU alumni have eventually been hired by Eisenhower Dance as full company members. The Oakland University Dance Program is the only program in the State of Michigan that has a professional dance company in residence.

Take Root - Company in Residence

Calling Rochester, Michigan their home, Take Root resides at Oakland University under the direction of its founders and fellow company members, OU Assistant Professor of Dance Ali Woerner and Associate Professor of Dance Thayer Jonutz. Appreciating the many facets of art, the company thrives on collaboration and untraditional spaces. Take Root’s multi-disciplinary approach to concepts and movement allows for their accessibility to all ages and backgrounds. They investigate the process of human connections, allowing their unique voice to directly reach audiences. Since it’s inception, Take Root has been commissioned to perform at the New Dance for Asia International Festival in Seoul, South Korea, Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival, Art X Detroit at the Detroit Institute of Art, performed at the National Theater of Costa Rica, Uferstudios in Berlin, Germany, The Red Bull House of Art in Eastern Market Detroit, The Detroit Dance City Festival, set their work on Eastern Michigan University and Oakland University, presented for the National Dance Education Organization, Ohio Dance Festival, The University of Costa Rica and the American College Dance Festival, and received grant funding from OU’s University Research College. The company’s mission is to “connect” through movement with as many individuals in as many diverse circles as possible. Take Root teaches master classes throughout Michigan to all ages promoting the need for connection to the arts and arts education. Take Root teaches an annual movement session at Walk the Line to SCI Recovery’s Field Day to those with spinal cord injuries and brain injuries. Currently, Take Root, lead by Co-Artistic Director and Co-Founder Ali Woerner, hosts a free Dance for Parkinson’s Disease class once a month. This specific class has taken off, reaffirming the need for “connection” within all circles of the community.