O’Connor has been with Colorado Ballet for six years and serves as Director of the Education Department, which now encompasses both Colorado Ballet’s community outreach initiatives and Academies. O’Connor is a certified Colorado educator with her BA in Secondary Education and Literature. Under O’Connor’s direction, Colorado Ballet’s community outreach has expanded to serving over 60,000 students, teachers, families, and people with special needs each year through afterschool programming, in-school classes, workshops and performances, lectures and professional development opportunities, and the Student Matinee series. New programs include Colorado Ballet and the Global Down Syndrome Foundation’s partnership, weekly movement classes for adults with Parkinson’s disease through the Parkinson’s Foundation of the Rockies and Mark Morris’ Dance for Parkinson’s teacher training program, and integrative art partnerships with the Denver Art Museum, Denver Public Library, and more.
O’Connor has been selected to present twice at the National Dance Education Organization’s annual conference, and recently joined NDEO’s Performing Arts Organization Advocacy workgroup with her counterparts at San Francisco Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet, etc. The Colorado Department of Education selected O’Connor to serve on its Standards Review Subcommittee, and continues as a selected member of the Content Collaboratives assessment review committee for Dance, creating K-12 evaluations for dance in public schools. Anne co-chairs the Denver Public School’s Arts Resource Council, serves on the Advisory Committee to the Scientific and Cultural Collaborative (SCFD), has served on the implementation taskforce for House Bill 1273: Arts Education and Workforce Development, served as Vice President of the Colorado Dance Alliance Board of Directors and currently serves on the Board of the Friends of the Carson Brierly Dance Library, contributing to a dance enrichment series with the University of Denver. She is a graduate of the Colorado Business Committee on the Arts’ Leadership Arts program.
Strang received her BFA in Dance with an emphasis in education from Arizona State University, where she also obtained her secondary teaching certificate. Strang’s research on dance education has been presented at the National Dance Education Organization conference and published in Dance Magazine and academic dance education journals. She is a regular presenter for Denver Public School’s Professional Development programs, implementing curriculum that incorporates the State dance standards. She is also an alumna of the dance programming office at the Kennedy Center for the Arts in Washington, D.C., where she helped produce performances for dance professionals from around the world. Most recently, she joined the Board of Dance and the Child International (DaCI).
Strang is a co-founder and artistic director of Elevation Dance, a Boulder-based children’s dance company, where she provides intensive dance training, unique performance opportunities, and original choreography. Strang has also been commissioned to set work on Anne Green Gilbert’s Kaleidoscope dance company and the dancers of Colorado Ballet. She has also produced or performed in numerous professional dance shows in Colorado, California, and Arizona.
Muñoz’ professional dancing career began in 1972 at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater (PBT), where he worked with several ballet masters. He later danced with Ballet Internacional de Caracas and Hartford Ballet. In 1980, the Venezuelan government appointed Muñoz as the Artistic Director of Ballet del Zulia, where he led the school and the company for two seasons. After returning to the U.S., Muñoz continued his teaching career in the Dance Department of Point Park College (now University) as the Director of the Conservatory of Dance and Music. A faculty member at Point Park College for 13 years, Muñoz taught all levels of ballet technique, character dance and male ballet technique. Additionally, he created two very successful programs: the Pre-professional Division and the International Summer Dance Program. During that time, he also served as part-time faculty at the PBT school and company. Muñoz served as a full-time faculty member at the Baltimore School for the Performing Arts from 1995 to 1997. In 1997, Muñoz became Ballet Master for the PBT and in 2004, the Pittsburgh Ballet Theater School appointed him director. He continued his work as Ballet Master for the company and worked as a principal character dancer for the company. Following his tenure at PBT, Muñoz became Executive Director of The Gulfshore Ballet, in Fort Myers, FL. He and wife also founded and directed two summer dance intensives: Saratoga Springs Dance Intensive (SSDI) in Saratoga Springs, NY and Vail Valley Dance Intensive (VVDI) in Vail CO.
Outreach, Teacher, Student Showcase Costumes, and Passport to Dance coordination
Koltiska received her BFA Degree in Dance from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Washington. While attending Cornish she had the opportunity to work and perform with choreographers: Donald Byrd, David Dorfman, Michel Foley, Amii LeGendre, and Wade Madsen. In 2004, Koltiska joined the modern dance company Motion Lab in San Francisco. Two years later she was asked to join the company "Robert Moses Kin" to perform a solo role in the world premiere of “Draft.”
Koltiska completed her Master of Fine Art studies, with an emphasis on Performance and Pedagogy, from Purchase College in New York. She was asked to join the Purchase College faculty for the remainder of her stay in New York as a resident Modern Technique Instructor. During her time in NYC she was given the opportunity to work and perform with world renowned choreographers such as: Ms. Carmen de Lavallade, Regina Larkin, Riedel Dance Theatre, Lauren Grant from Mark Morris Dance, Lisa Race, and Nicole Wolcott from Larry Keigwin and Company. Koltiska joined Kim Robards Dance Company, followed by the Apex Contemporary Dance Company.
Coleman graduated with a BFA in Digital Animation with an emphasis in medical animation and Minor in Leadership Studies. In 2009, she presented her Cystic Fibrosis particle and dynamic simulation work at SIGGRAPH, an international computer graphics and interactive technique conference in New Orleans. Coleman was honored at the 9News Leader of the Year reception to receive the 2009 title of the Colorado Leadership Alliance’s Leader of the Year award presented by The Boettcher Foundation and the Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation. In 2012, Coleman was recognized by the State of Colorado in honor of her dedicated service and contributions to Serve Colorado – Governor’s Commission on Community Service and the 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service.
Coleman was part of the Denver Art Museum’s Native Arts Department to work on the American Indian art galleries renovation project. Currently, Coleman sits on the Board of Directors for the Alumni Association at University of Colorado Denver. Coleman has also danced pre-professionally with Colorado Ballet, Boston Ballet, and the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
Gallardo is currently a B.A. candidate in Psychology, with a minor in Biology from the University of Colorado at Denver. She plans to pursue higher education and become a Clinical Psychologist emphasizing in childhood and adolescence. She is incredibly passionate about the education and nurturing of children everywhere and has applied that passion as a volunteer for numerous nonprofits and community centers such as the Denver Children’s Advocacy Center, Warren Village and Porter Adventist Hospital.
Gallardo had the privilege of participating in exciting fields with the University of Colorado Denver - Business School and the State of Colorado under the Lieutenant Governor’s Offices of Early Childhood and Community Service.
Ms. Gallardo joined Colorado Ballet in June 2011 and she is grateful to have the opportunity of interacting with children of all ages and assisting in their continuing dance education. Ms. Gallardo’s interest in dance began when she participated in an Independent Competitive Winterguard Team from the years of 2008-2010 where she travelled nationally to compete during those years. Ms. Gallardo is bi-lingual in English and Spanish.