2017 FAF Instructor Bios
In 2008, Allie Cooper began learning the fundamentals of Corde Lisse in Santa Cruz under the direction of Kevin O’Connor, and since then has continued to explore and utilize momentum as a source of inspiration in her work. Known for her innovative transitions and refreshing application of vertical theory, she is constantly searching for new ways to move in the air, on the ground, and in the space between. Ms. Cooper is the co-owner of the Radical Movement Factory in Santa Cruz and Artistic Director of Aeraflux aerial arts company, and has coached many aerialists who have gone on to perform across the globe.
A multi-faceted artist who's worked with Aerial Dance Chicago, the Joffrey Ballet, the Colorado Ballet, and Frequent Flyers® Productions, Danielle Garrison is an MFA Candidate in Dance with an emphasis in Aerial Dance and Somatics at the University of Colorado Boulder. Performance credits include the Frequent Flyers® Aerial Dance Festival, the Santa Barbara Floor to Air Festival, Aerial Ever After in the Olympic Stadium in Athens, Greece, Les Rencontres de Danse Aérienne in France, and The Paloma Project for the San Francisco Aerial Dance Festival. She is a 2017/18 Resident Artist at La Grainerie in Toulouse, and the recipient of the Beverly Sears Named Grant, CYE Award, UGGS Travel Grant, Eaton Travel Grant, and a Semi-finalist for Fulbright France.
For over 25 years, Ninette Paloma’s feet have been dangling over the edges of dusty stages the world over, combining her training in contemporary dance, physical theatre, gymnastics, and aerial dance to develop a highly detailed movement language in the art of contemporary flight. In 2006, she founded the Santa Barbara Centre for Aerial Dance, a year-round conservatory specializing in the floor to air® pedagogy. To date, Ms. Paloma has choreographed eight evening-length stage works debuting in California, New York, Illinois, Arizona, and France. She is a freelance dance writer for the Santa Barbara Independent, and the 2017 recipient of the Apogee Awards for excellence in Dance Education.
Elizabeth Stich is a lifelong lover and investigator of movement based in Salt Lake City, Utah. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in Modern Dance from the University of Utah, and a Certificate in Laban Movement Analysis/Bartenieff Fundamentals through Integrated Movement Studies. Ms. Stich has been a featured aerialist for Cirque de la Mer and All Wheel Sports Extreme, in addition to presenting her own work at the Aerial Acrobatic Arts Festival in Denver and the Santa Barbara Floor to Air Festival. Elizabeth is a passionate educator offering courses in contemporary dance technique and aerial arts across the country, and is an instructor for Aerial Arts of Utah.
Helen Wicks is a performer and educator based in San Francisco. She holds a BA in dance and psychology from Bard College, where she had the opportunity to perform works by Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and Merce Cunningham. Ms. Wicks has danced for Laura Bernasconi, Cielo Vertical Arts, Leah Cox, El Circo Dia, and Zaccho Dance Theatre, among others. She currently teaches dance and acrobatics in ODCs Young Creative Program, Zaccho Center for Dance and Aerial Arts, and at various elementary schools around the Bay Area while performing her own choreography at SAFEhouse Arts and ODC.