DanceTheYard directors


ALISON MANNING is Executive Director and Co-Producer of The Yard and Co-Ar-tistic Director of DanceTheYard.  Hailing from the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont, Alison moved to New York City to attend Marymount Manhattan College where she received a BFA in Dance with a minor in Art History.  After studying with the great Milton Myers at the School at Jacob’s Pillow and discovering her love of the Horton Technique, she continued training with Myers, Kristina Berger, Karen Gayle, and oth-ers.  She now teaches Horton on faculty at The Yard, as a guest teacher at Peridance Capezio Center and STEPS on Broadway, and has taught and lectured on the tech-nique at New York University’s Steinhardt School of Education, Wesleyan University, and Ohio University, as well as at various local studios and student intensives. She currently performs and tours with The Bang Group, The Peggy Spina Tap Company, and DanceTheYard.  In years past, she has toured and performed with Xodus Dance Collective, Boston- based Kindodance Company, Naomi Goldberg Haas’ Dances for a Variable Population, and The Next Stage Project, among others.  Her own choreo-graphic work, with collaborator Jesse Keller, continues to be presented each year as part of The Yard’s performance series, was chosen for the 2016 Inside/Out Festival at Jacob’s Pillow, and has been set on students at Ohio University, and was present-ed at Women in Motion salon series at NY Theater Lab 2013 and Triskelion Arts in Brooklyn in 2014.  She is currently in her 10th season with The Yard.


From Ashland, Ohio, JESSE KELLER graduated from Ohio University with a BFA in Performance and Choreography.  She started performing professionally with Ste-fanieBatten Bland (SBB) in Paris, France and remains a part of the troupe.  With SBB, she has performed internationally at Festival Onze Bouge, Ris Orangis, Les Petites Scenes Ouvertes, and Cornell University’s Cultural Residency, along with nationally at The Baryshnikov Arts Center, Symphony Space, The Brooklyn Museum, Saratoga ArtsFest, Dogtown Dance Theater, Jacob’s Pillow’s Inside/Out, and Ringling Interna-tional Arts Festival.  She is a year-round island resident on Martha’s Vineyard where she serves as Director of Island Programs and Education and Co-Producer at The Yard, as well as Co-Artistic Director of DanceTheYard (DTY), The Yard’s resident dance collective.  Since forming, DTY has presented work at The Yard, MV Hebrew Center, The MV Film Festival, NACHMO Boston, ACDFA East Central, Ohio Universi-ty, Triskelion Arts, and the Women in Motion Festival.  At The Yard she has played an instrumental role in developing and implementing MAKING IT, a creative dance-mak-ing curriculum and creativity initiative now active in all Martha’s Vineyard Public and Charter schools, as well as at the YMCA, in afterschool programs, libraries, senior centers, and elsewhere around island.  In 2014 she was named ‘Woman of the Year’ by Women Empowered for her work in dance education.