The Joel Hall Dancers & Center Alumni Board
The Joel Hall Dancers & Center Alumni Board is a diverse group of alumni from the school, the Company and Joel Hall Dancers audience, who act as ambassadors and provide philanthropic support to JHDC. They are a diverse group of individuals who share a love of dance and JHDC, as they work together toward one common goal, which is the sustainability of the Joel Hall Dancers. If you have any interest in becoming a board member, working on specific projects, or volunteering your time in other ways, please call us at 773-293-0900 or e-mail your information to JHDCalumniboard@joelhall.org.
Matthew Metro hails from Chicago where he has been a company member and principal with Gus Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, The Jump Rhythm Jazz Project, The Joel Hall Dancers, and The Cerqua Rivera Dance Theater. His theater credits include RENT, Chicago, The Full Monty, Cats, The Lion King, 42nd Street, Big River, Funny Girl and Little Shop of Horrors, and was even a featured dancer in All His Jazz, an evening with John Kander. After moving to Lancaster, PA, Matthew worked to bring his talents to a new generation as Ballet Master and Rehearsal Director for the Ballet Theater of Lancaster. Matthew currently calls New York City his home and is beginning his third year on faculty at the Viktor Yeliohin International Ballet Academy.
Amanda Jane is an alumna of JHDC and Company. She lives in LA and owns a Pilates, Gyrotonic, yoga and rehabilitation studio in the Santa Monica/Brentwood area. She's owned her business for eight years and has been teaching for fifteen years.
Amanda Jane moved to Chicago to dance and teach the movement modalities she so loves. She danced for Joel Hall Dance Center, the Black Orchid, Van Collins Movement Project, Dance Chicago and the Chicago Bulls Luvabulls dance team. It was in this city where she had the opportunity to apprentice under Juergen Bamberger in a Gyrotonic and Gyrokinesis training program.
Upon returning to Los Angeles, Amanda Jane went back to Nannette Brodie Dance Theatre as a company member and soloist. Amanda Jane received her certification in Hatha Yoga at White Lotus in the Santa Ynez mountains in 2003. She also opened Mala Motion, an Integrated Fitness Studio in 2003 where she currently sees clients. Amanda Jane earned her certification in Yoga Therapy under the direction of Larry Payne at Loyola Marymount University in 2007 where she gained more knowledge for those clients needing modifications to their sessions and rehabilitation methods. Amanda Jane invites people of all disciplines and levels of athleticism to explore Pilates, Gyrotonic, Gyrokinesis, Yoga and dance.
Bill Janisse, from Detroit, MI, trained with The Joel Hall Dance Center and The Joffrey Ballet School-American Ballet Center of New York under full scholarship. Bill has had the pleasure of working with The Joel Hall Dancers, Joel Hall 2, Donn Arden’s Jubilee!, Royal Caribbean International Productions, Fivestar Boogie Productions, Dick Foster Productions, GI Alliance Dancers, Ascensions: The Kirby Reed Project, The Michigan Ballet Theatre, M&M American Dance Theatre, and Detroit Dance Collective, to name a few.
Bill is the Head Choreographer for Q Productions Las Vegas, Inc. and is the Executive Director and faculty member of Tara Foy’s Elite Ballet Summer Intensive. Bill is on the faculty of The Institute of Music and Dance at Marygrove College, and was the Company Ballet Master for Donn Arden’s Jubilee! at Bally’s Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Bill choreographed and performed in the Japanese tour of Las Vegas Nights by Q Productions and most recently choreographed an updated version of Dirk Arthur’s Xtreme Magic at the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas. Bill has a true love and passion for dance and enjoys sharing, creating, and developing movement with others.
Here is Bill’s Joel Hall story:
I started training with The Joel Hall Dance Center in Chicago in the fall of 2002. I had just moved from Detroit, MI to the big city to pursue a career in dance. I knew that I wanted to dance for the Joel Hall Dancers one day, and when I came to the studio, I was pleased to learn that the very next day they were holding scholarship auditions. I thought I didn’t even have a chance, but somehow I built up enough confidence to get there early the next morning. It was my first audition in any professional situation. However, Joel and his creative team luckily saw some potential in me and offered me one of the scholarships.
Little did I know at the time how intense and hard the work was going to be, but with that hard work and long hours in the studio came amazing rewards at the end of the day. I look back on my time at the JHDC as one of my most fond memories of my dance career. I learned so much from all of the amazing people associated with that organization. One of the best things about the JHDC and company is that when you are there, you are part of a family. There is so much support, guidance, and love… sometimes tough love when needed. After a while I was promoted to Joel Hall II, the second company. From there I went on to apprentice with the company and finally made my debut with The Joel Hall Dancers during their 30th Anniversary Season.
The knowledge, training, love and experience I gained from Joel himself as well as the company and school have helped bring me all over the world with my dancing. Even now, years later I still know that I am a part of the Joel Hall family. It is something very near to my heart and I have so many wonderful memories and friendships from the time I spent there.
Dancer/Choreographer Jarrett Rashad is a native of Chicago who has danced with JHD, Deeply Rooted Dance Theater and Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, and has choreographed for Dance Crash Chicago, JHD, and Framework Dance Chicago. He has performed in the Joffrey Ballet’s Nutcracker, the 2006 Chicago Gay Games, Radio City’s Christmas Spectacular, The Damnation of Faust at the Lyric Opera, and Drury Lane’s Aida.
In June of 2011, Jarrett joined the Las Vegas cast of Lion King the Broadway Musical. While in Vegas, Jarrett has worked with such names as Blair Farrington of Farrington Entertainment, Tyrell Rolle, Kellen Stancil, & Saleemah Knight. He was a featured choreographer/ performer for the Golden Rainbow’s Beaux Arts Ball at MGM’s Studio 54 as well as the City Moves benefit Concert; & recently finished his Modern Dance Artist in Residency at the University of Las Vegas Nevada. Jarrett is currently an ensemble member with the cast of Cirque Du Soleil’s Viva Elvis & will soon be joining the cast of Cirque Du Soleil’s Beatles “Love”.
Here is Jarrett’s Joel Hall story:
My time at Joel Hall has prepared me to become the Man/Performer I am today. There is just something about JHDC that excites me. Maybe the house music blasting out of Joel’s class or maybe the familiar faces I have seen over the years that have had unwavering faith in me, but just being in that building does something great for my soul.
I began training at JHDC when I was 11 years of age with an adult scholarship, deceiving Joel & administration by telling them I was 13 years of age…the requirements of the adult scholarship; but due to the demands of the adult program as a full time grammar school student I pulled double duty between the adult and youth program. I worked my way up through the youth program; 1511 under the direction of Nancy Teinowitz; JHD2 under Duwane Pendarvis; and finally JHD under Joel Hall.
I have worked with amazing artists who have always taught me that artistry is everything. Something that I continue to improve on as well as something that has gotten me this far at my age. Joel Hall will forever be home… I am very thankful for the many friends & mentors I have had over the years.
Proudly Canadian yet based in New York, Lisa’s credits include both NYC and North American touring casts of STOMP. where she is a full time cast member in the international hit show STOMP. Her platforms have ranged from the Beijing International Dance Festival as a dancer, choreographer and American media spokesperson, and was recently Co-Director and host of Chicago Human Rhythm Project’s “Spotlight on Canada” where she proudly stood as a leader in representing Canadian’s talent and legacy at one of the world’s most renowned International tap festivals. Her credits have also extended in working with “ACGI” and “Charlie’s Angels” with Emmy Award winning choreographer Jason Samuels Smith, recently presented at The Joyce in New York. She has also worked with Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards performing at Harlem’s Legendary Cotton Club and with her latest project “Blood on the Dance floor” in tribute to Michael Jackson. Other companies Lisa works with also include Max Pollak’s “Rumba Tap” (currently launching their debut album), “Barbara Duffy and Co.”, and also The Cab Calloway Foundation Inc. Internationally Lisa has taught and performed in Brazil, China, Germany, the UK, Switzerland, Canada, and across the US. She currently teaches at Steps on Broadway and the American Tap Dance Foundation in NYC and works on her own projects with her group “Tap Phonics”
Here is Lisa’s Joel Hall story:
In 2006 I was awakened by the pure passionate spirit of DANCE upon my discovery of Joel Hall and the Joel Hall Dance Center. Joel himself has a bird’s eye view of a dancer’s personal best that far surpasses what he or she can see in themselves. That being said, I walked in that classroom for the first time just thinking that I was going to get a good work out, and instead was shaken by the drive to discover a growth in my dancing I never knew existed. Regardless that my professional background was mostly as a tap dancer from Canada working in Chicago with The Chicago Human Rhythm Project and M.A.D.D. Rhythms, Joel gave me confidence to know I can do it all and that my versatility is what is going to get me ahead and more refined as my career develops. After a few years of training and then going on to be blessed to apprentice momentarily with the Joel Hall Dancers company, I have moved on to further my career basing myself in New York City. Some of my highlights have included being a cast member in the Off-Broadway and National Touring casts of STOMP, performing weekly at Harlem’s legendary Cotton Cotton, guest teaching at both Steps On Broadway. Broadway Dance Center and the American Tap Dance Foundation and teaching and performing internationally at dance festivals including countries such as, Brazil, China, Germany, Turkey, Switzerland, the UK and across Canada to name a few. With mentors such as Joel Hall, it’s instilled in me always that the sky is the limit. I can confidently say The Joel Hall Dance Center will turn a dancer OUT!