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Joanna Patterson


Joanna is owner/director/teacher at The Moving Company Dance Studio, and is a dancer and choreographer with L Street Dance Theatre. She has recently been a Teaching Artist in the Theater and Dance Department at Colby College, as well as adjunct faculty at the University of New England. She is a member of the National Dance Education Organization, and is certified in Progressing Ballet Technique.

Joanna discovered her love of dance at age 10, thanks to the National Dance Institute program (created by New York City Ballet principal dancer Jacques d’Amboise) , an arts-in-education program for public school children which “uses dance and music to instill in students a love of the arts, a passion for learning, and a desire to strive for their personal best.”  Inspired to continue, she received her early formal dance training in ballet, modern and tap dance at Granite State Ballet in New Hampshire, as well as the summer programs of Burklyn Ballet Theatre in Vermont, and American Theater Dance Workshop at Hofstra University.

In 1999 Joanna earned her Bachelor of Arts in Dance, Magna Cum Laude, from Desales University in Pennsylvania, where she was awarded a four year talent scholarship and studied modern, ballet, pointe, tap, dance composition, dance history, kinesiology, theatrical lighting and costume construction.  She performed as a featured dancer in numerous faculty and student works, as well as dance roles in The Music Man and Evita, and acting roles in student-directed plays.  She was a member of Desales’ pre-professional touring company, which brought dance performances and workshops to elementary and middle schools throughout the greater Lehigh Valley.  As a choreographer, Joanna’s work was selected for presentation in student and faculty shows as well as for the 1999 American College Dance Festival, where her senior thesis "Rowing", a dance/text work based on the poetry of Anne Sexton, was awarded a place in the Mid-Atlantic region Gala Performance.

Joanna moved to Maine in 2000 to apprentice with Ram Island Dance under the artistic direction of Sara Whale.  In 2003 she joined Debi Irons’ Art Moves Dance Company as a dancer, choreographer and teacher, and with them she performed at countless concerts, workshops and special events all over Maine, from Portland to Presque Isle.  She has danced in and presented her choreography at Portland Dances!, a yearly new-works showcase, as well as the Franco-American/Bates Winter Dance Showcase, and concerts by L Street Dance Theatre.  In 2016 her comedic dance theater piece "The Valentine Sisters" was selected for presentation in Portland Ballet's "Gallery: The Choreographer's Work". She has performed in works by numerous choreographers, including Niles Ford, Debi Irons, Peter Kalivas of Sean Curran Company, Kennet Oberly, Christine Philion-Dufour, Nell Shipman, and with Portland Ballet in their Victorian Nutcracker and the Capriccio Festival. Joanna currently choreographs and performs with her co-creators in L Street Dance Theatre, a collaborative dance experience.